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<snip

Let's not forget though that gas taxes haven't risen at the federal level since shortly after Jacksonville's toll bridges were abolished. Sure, Florida has increased them to keep pace with inflation, but that doesn't do a lot of good when fuel economy has increased to the point that a gallon of gas gets you twice as far in 2019 than it did in 1987.

The roads aren't going to pay for themselves.

<snip>


This is why some states are experimenting with usage taxes based on miles driven.
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I heard from a friend who works at FDOT, and was told that no SunPass transponder is needed to use the I-295 Express Lanes during the off-peak hours, when tolls are not currently charged.  But, there was a caution, that it would be best to have the SunPass, in case you find yourself in the Express Lane during the toll times. For example, if the clock in your car is fast, and you think it is 10:05 (free time), but it is really 9:50 (tolls in effect). Then, you would face the toll plus a penalty.

Oh, and - for the time being - the toll is a flat 50 cents, no higher charge when congestion is worse.  But, that will change, eventually.
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My initial understanding was that this earmark would use monies from the general revenue fund. Given the local political establishment's will to get behind this appropriation (given the powerful presence John Rood holds over local politics), I thought that this was a shoe-in.

When I later learned that they were directing Sadowski Fund monies outside of the normal appropriation process... my thought process drastically changed.

During my time on the Times Union Editorial Board, I was very pleased to have the paper publish a position to ensure that Sadowski Fund monies are used for their original intent- ensuring that working families in Florida continue to have access to workforce housing. For years, the legislature had raided Sadowski Fund revenue and diverted them to all sorts of special interest projects that had absolutely nothing to do with housing:

https://www.jacksonville.com/opinion/20190611/tuesday-editorial-desantis-should-approve-affordable-housing-bill

Governor DeSantis deserves a ton of credit for not only protecting the Sadowski Fund, but ensuring that the process to access those funds are not corrupted by political whims.

To Vestcor's credit, they have been very successful at submitting successful bids for affordable housing tax credits in Jacksonville's urban core over the last 5 years. For a very long time, Jacksonville's pre-consolidated city limits (the urban core) had gotten the shaft and did not receive our fair share of those dollars.

For those interested in learning about the process for financing affordable housing projects using low-income housing tax credits, a portion of this article gives a good explanation/chart:

https://www.thejaxsonmag.com/article/affordable-housing-development-proposed-in-brooklyn-page-2/

When The Lofts at Brooklyn break ground later this year, that will be Vestcor's sixth affordable housing project to go up in the urban core
and the fourth within DIA's boundaries, to have been constructed since 2014.
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Downtown / Re: Mixed-Use Infill Proposed For Cathedral District
« Last post by fieldafm on Today at 10:38:09 AM »
I'm more curious if this is actually a viable product. They've already had to go back to DIA once to renew expired vesting rights on this property over the last 2+ years.


Generally try to reserve judgement on aesthetics. On one hand, these renderings seem to go back to my first concern. It looks like they've value engineered this thing to be constructed as cheap as possible. On the other hand, the idea behind the concept reminds me of something we wrote about in Chattanooga several years ago:

https://www.moderncities.com/article/2016-mar-the-best-weekly-markets-in-the-southeast-page-3

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Downtown / Re: Mixed-Use Infill Proposed For Cathedral District
« Last post by Tacachale on Today at 10:32:48 AM »
From these two slides and looking at Google Earth, it includes the row on Duval and one property on Washington:

https://www.google.com/maps/@30.3281281,-81.6501828,101m/data=!3m1!1e3





Lol, so it's completely missing the part of the block that's a lot and taking out a bunch of extant buildings.
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Downtown / Re: Mixed-Use Infill Proposed For Cathedral District
« Last post by thelakelander on Today at 10:07:56 AM »
From these two slides and looking at Google Earth, it includes the row on Duval and one property on Washington:

https://www.google.com/maps/@30.3281281,-81.6501828,101m/data=!3m1!1e3



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Downtown / Re: Mixed-Use Infill Proposed For Cathedral District
« Last post by Charles Hunter on Today at 10:01:54 AM »
Without a site plan showing the project's relation to the block, it is impossible to tell if the project involves just the row of houses on Duval, or if it also includes the vacant parcels on the north and east sides of the block. I suppose it probably does, given the apparent size, but can't say for sure.  The block to the south (between Duval and Monroe) seems to have fewer existing houses, that may not even be 'in the way'.
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Downtown / Re: Mixed-Use Infill Proposed For Cathedral District
« Last post by Tacachale on Today at 09:46:10 AM »
While this looks like a decent (albeit ugly as hell) project, why knock down some of the few remaining buildings to build it when we have so much vacant land?  Seems a shame to knock down these houses instead of building somewhere else.

It's hard to tell here, but much of that block is vacant. There aren't many in the Cathedral District that wouldn't involve demolishing at least some buildings. And even fewer that have vacant lots that aren't actively used for parking.
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Downtown / Re: Mixed-Use Infill Proposed For Cathedral District
« Last post by Charles Hunter on Today at 09:42:13 AM »
^ This.
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Downtown / Re: Mixed-Use Infill Proposed For Cathedral District
« Last post by Lostwave on Today at 09:38:29 AM »
While this looks like a decent (albeit ugly as hell) project, why knock down some of the few remaining buildings to build it when we have so much vacant land?  Seems a shame to knock down these houses instead of building somewhere else.
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