Author Topic: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia  (Read 8507 times)

Metro Jacksonville

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San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« on: June 02, 2016, 03:00:03 AM »
San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia



What is now recognized as the neighborhood of San Jose, 4.5 miles south of Jacksonville, was originally envisioned to be a grand master-planned development.

Read More: http://www.metrojacksonville.com/article/2016-jun-san-jose-mature-1920s-jacksonville-suburbia

toi

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Re: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2016, 08:39:53 AM »
Thanks Ennis.  I live in San Jose, on a block with a 1920s home, numerous mid-century homes, and 1980s homes across the street.  The history and development of this area is a great story and helps lend perspective to discussions concerning new master planned communities on what is today's urban fringe. I also appreciate that it has a range of housing choices, from affordable to unaffordable, single family and multifamily. 

Ocklawaha

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Re: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2016, 09:25:57 AM »
The concept was automobile focused but during the 'teens' the Jacksonville - St. Augustine Interurban Railway project headed south from the Ferry Landing in South Jacksonville to San Jose via what is todays Hendricks and Old San Jose Blvd's. The project stalled and the work sat unfinished until 1924 when the City of South Jacksonville built the South Jacksonville Municipal Railways and the residents of San Jose begged for the streetcar line to come south. As there was quite a surplus of cash after the initial MUNI tracks were laid, the city agreed and the line was finally built.

The community also pioneered what we'd probably call BRT or Express Bus service. A dedicated non-stop bus line operated from the Union Bus Terminal directly into San Jose Village during the 1920's.

coredumped

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Re: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2016, 02:07:25 PM »
San Jose came after Arlington, correct?

I always considered Arlington the first Jax suburb.
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thelakelander

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Re: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2016, 05:21:51 PM »
San Jose came before. Jax's earliest suburbs (ex. Springfield, LaVilla, etc.) were established in the 19th century. San Jose was initially developed in the mid-1920s. Arlington took off after the opening of the Mathews Bridge, a few years after the end of WWII.
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coredumped

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Re: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2016, 07:00:01 PM »
Funny, I don't consider Springfield etc the suburbs.

So San Jose was really an infill between Mandarin and downtown. Although there wasn't much in Mandarin at the time, there must have been something down there given the history.
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thelakelander

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Re: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2016, 09:40:11 PM »
Time, a change in travel patterns and population density have turned Jax's initial suburbs into being considered core city neighborhoods. Some of the early suburbs are even considered to be a part of downtown. I have a 19th century map of Jacksonville and its suburbs. It's amazing how this place has changed over the course of a century.

I'm not sure I'd qualify San Jose as infill in the way that we think of it. Mandarin was incorporated in 1841, but was a lot smaller than the area we call Mandarin today. It was still miles away and had nothing to with the development of San Jose.
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coredumped

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Re: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2016, 08:32:00 AM »
Great info lake. You would know much better than me, but Mandarin was basically all citrus farms, a general store and a post office back then, correct?
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Houseboat Mike

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Re: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2016, 09:22:39 AM »
Great info lake. You would know much better than me, but Mandarin was basically all citrus farms, a general store and a post office back then, correct?

Correct. And a LOT of people don't realize that at the corner of Sunbeam and San Jose used to be a landfill (apartments were built over it), and there is a retired landfill halfway down Sunbeam Road that is not at capacity- it was closed due to the smell complaints back in the 80's. Although we call that Mandarin today, Old Mandarin is really Mandarin Road, Orange Picker Road, etc.

Tacachale

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Re: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2016, 09:49:51 AM »
^Right. There were quite a few formerly independent communities that have been enveloped by post-World War II suburban growth, and in some cases before. Arlington, New Berlin, Mandarin, Orange Park are all examples. There are also various riverfront areas that were originally just some rich peoples' homes that are now part of the surrounding suburban neighborhood.

San Jose was a bit different in that it was designed to be a separate community several miles from the city, meaning it was basically going to be a separate master planned town built from scratch. However, it was still essentially a bedroom community for people working in Jacksonville. In that way it prefigured the bedroom suburbs that grew up after the war. It was a bit too early to really be successful - unlike other, closer 1920s-era neighborhoods like Avondale, San Marco, and Panama Park, but as we can see the land, if not the plan, became hot in the era of post-war sprawl that also gave us various other Southside neighborhoods, Arlington, and others.
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Re: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« Reply #10 on: June 03, 2016, 10:52:51 AM »
Most of San Jose area was a gift from Z. Kingsley... yes that family.  This map shows the land owners at the turn of the century...

http://www.loc.gov/resource/g3933d.la000075/
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Re: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2016, 12:01:55 AM »
I grew up in Ortega Forest and loved driving through the San Jose area. Now I know why I love it so much. It was designed by John Nolen, who also designed Venice, FL, where I moved to in 1994. Residents of San Jose and Venice should visit each other's communities.

finehoe

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Re: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2016, 09:58:07 AM »

thelakelander

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Re: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« Reply #13 on: June 09, 2016, 10:45:51 AM »
There's a similar sketch of the original San Jose master plan in the main library's special collections department.  I'll try to remember to stop by at lunch to grab a quick picture to post here.
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thelakelander

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Re: San Jose: Mature 1920s Jacksonville suburbia
« Reply #14 on: June 11, 2016, 08:06:45 PM »


Nolan's plan for San Jose. Image courtesy of Dr. Wayne Wood's Jacksonville's Architectural Heritage book.


"A man who views the world the same at 50 as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.” - Muhammad Ali