The Jaxson

Jacksonville by Neighborhood => Urban Neighborhoods => Topic started by: Metro Jacksonville on December 07, 2015, 11:00:02 PM

Title: The Sports District: Life Before Everbank Field
Post by: Metro Jacksonville on December 07, 2015, 11:00:02 PM
The Sports District: Life Before Everbank Field

(http://photos.metrojacksonville.com/Neighborhoods/Downtown-Working-Waterfront/i-vqJRVT3/0/L/Train-900x1000.jpg)

While the Jacksonville City Council is poised to pass a bill this week to add an amphitheater and indoor football facility at Everbank Field, Metro Jacksonville takes a look at what was in the Sports District before football.

Read More: http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2014-dec-the-sports-district-life-before-everbank-field
Title: Re: The Sports District: Life Before Everbank Field
Post by: tufsu1 on December 08, 2015, 07:34:45 AM
Awesome look back Ennis!
Title: Re: The Sports District: Life Before Everbank Field
Post by: Noone on December 08, 2015, 07:59:27 AM
Great tour.
Title: Re: The Sports District: Life Before Everbank Field
Post by: Jason on December 08, 2015, 08:50:47 AM
Another fantastic article!

The rich history of this city still amazes me
Title: Re: The Sports District: Life Before Everbank Field
Post by: Wacca Pilatka on December 08, 2015, 10:17:35 AM
I've always wondered who occupies that St. Johns River Shipbuilding office building.  Is it in use?
Title: Re: The Sports District: Life Before Everbank Field
Post by: mbwright on December 08, 2015, 10:22:58 AM
Very cool.  I had always wondered about the long white building with the green roof next to the baseball grounds.
Title: Re: The Sports District: Life Before Everbank Field
Post by: jaxlongtimer on December 09, 2015, 01:55:13 AM
Lake, great article but no mention of the Benjamin Moore paint plant or large oil tank farm that bordered the old Gator Bowl?  No mention of the old Coliseum or Wolfson Park?  That's what I recall as the most visible part of "life before Everbank Field" that was essentially transformed to make the area more appealing to today's sports fans! My family always wondered allowed about the consequences if, God forbid, one of those oil tanks blew during a packed house at the Gator Bowl.

Quote
Published Friday, June 14, 2002
Per Jacksonville.com at http://jacksonville.com/tu-online/stories/061402/bus_paint.html#.VmfPAL9SR8E (http://jacksonville.com/tu-online/stories/061402/bus_paint.html#.VmfPAL9SR8E):
Paint company to move to Orlando

By From staff reports

Benjamin Moore & Co. is moving its Westside distribution center to Orlando next year, affecting 28 employees, the company confirmed Friday.

The move from the Westside Industrial Park off Pritchard Road is scheduled for February or March, company spokeswoman Eileen McComb said. All of the employees will be offered jobs in Orlando and another company plant in Alabama, she said.

New Jersey-based Benjamin Moore first opened a factory in Jacksonville in the mid-1950s. In 1995, the paint company moved its factory from next to Alltel Stadium to make way for Jacksonville Jaguars' practice fields.

The Westside plant was a manufacturing facility until 2000, when it was converted into a distribution center. The company plans to maintain a regional sales office in Jacksonville with 10 to 15 employees, McComb said.

Note, as I recall, the practice fields were originally south of the stadium were the Pepsi zone eventually was established and where Kahn now wants to put the practice facility and amphitheater.

Pictures below show some pieces of these facilities.

(https://www.floridamemory.com/fpc/rfisher/RF00193.jpg)
Above per Florida State Archives at https://www.floridamemory.com/items/show/166859 (https://www.floridamemory.com/items/show/166859)

(https://www.floridamemory.com/fpc/prints/pr05327.jpg)
Above per Florida State Archives at https://www.floridamemory.com/items/show/4649 (https://www.floridamemory.com/items/show/4649)

(http://scottymoore.net/images/wolfsonpark/Sports%2520Complex-1965-1477.jpg)
Above per Jacksonville Historical Society via http://scottymoore.net/wolfson.html (http://scottymoore.net/wolfson.html)

(https://www.floridamemory.com/fpc/prints/pr05315.jpg)
Above per Florida State Archives at https://www.floridamemory.com/items/show/4642 (https://www.floridamemory.com/items/show/4642).

(https://www.floridamemory.com/fpc/rfisher/RF00192.jpg)
Above per Florida State Archives at https://www.floridamemory.com/items/show/166858 (https://www.floridamemory.com/items/show/166858)

Going back even further, this is how the area looked:

(https://www.floridamemory.com/fpc/rfisher/RF00094b.jpg)
Above per Florida State Archives at https://www.floridamemory.com/items/show/166754 (https://www.floridamemory.com/items/show/166754)
Title: Re: The Sports District: Life Before Everbank Field
Post by: thelakelander on December 09, 2015, 06:46:03 AM
Lake, great article but no mention of the Benjamin Moore paint plant or large oil tank farm that bordered the old Gator Bowl?

Yes. On page 4, it speaks to the redevelopment of the St. Johns River Shipbuilding Company. Both the paint plant and oil tank farm (Sinclair) were various businesses at the Duval Terminal Company. I didn't mention every business that took up space at the old shipyard but I did include Sinclair.

"After the war, the property was taken over by the Duval Terminal Company and utilized for a variety of industrial uses.  Businesses once operating at this site, which went north to Adams Street, included Sinclair Refining Company, Southern Industries Company, W.F.G.A. TV Studio, Merrill-Stevens St. Johns Division and the Mid-States Steel & Wire Company. This heavy industry resulted in the Hart Bridge Expressway's Northbank path being constructed as a viaduct between Commodore Point and Liberty Street. The expansion of the Gator Bowl for the Jacksonville Jaguars in the 1990s converted most of this property into parking lots and Gator Bowl Boulevard, south of what is now EverBank Field."

http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2014-dec-the-sports-district-life-before-everbank-field/page/2

Quote
No mention of the old Coliseum or Wolfson Park?  That's what I recall as the most visible part of "life before Everbank Field" that was essentially transformed to make the area more appealing to today's sports fans!

For this story, I attempted to focus on the interesting history of the area's waterfront, or essentially everything south of Adams and east of Talleyrand, from the Jacksonville Shipyards up to the old Ford plant. The images were taken during a tour I gave to a SCAD student interested in doing her thesis on the redevelopment of older waterfront industrial areas. Excluding Florida Avenue (now A. Philip Randolph Boulevard) north of Adams was primarily residential until the creation of the Coliseum, Wolfson and the continued expansions of EverBank (old Jacksonville Municipal Stadium and Gator Bowl) and parking lots associated with them.  What's now EverBank, pretty much ate up the old Fairfield Park between the 1920s and 1960s or so. Another park at Adams and Georgia was taken out for parking associated with the Coliseum. The current baseball park is on top of it.