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bobliocatt

Laura Street Trio Rendering

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I stumbled upon a document with this rendering of the proposed Laura Street Trio project on it at work today. It looks like they plan to construct some type of glass tower, elevator shaft or atrium to connect the Florida Life and Bisbee Buildings. Hopefully something will be built in the vacant lots surrounding the buildings too.

lauratrio1gf.jpg

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^It very well may be. KBJ was recently named the architect and this is the first time, that I've seen this rendering and its very different from what the previous group proposed.

It will be interesting to see what the new portion looks like from Adams Street and what the breakdown of uses will be.

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I'm intigues by the glass portion, and how it might serve to bridge the gap between the historical and the futuristic (the latter of which I'd like to see more and more, given Jax's plentiful stock of older buildings).

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KBJ is the architect for the site now. They have been over there frequently measuring and photographing the existing conditions.

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^Why do you say for now? Do you think these buildings are beyond repair? The Florida Life worries me, but the Bisbee looks pretty solid. I know there was a lake in the basement of the Marble Bank, but from peaking through the windows, this past weekend, the interior of that place is beautiful. There must be a way to save it.

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The Bisbee Building -- It was build in 1909 by famed Jacksonville architect Henry J. Klutho, McEachin said.

"It represents one of the earliest skyscrapers in Jacksonville," he said.

Skyscrapers were made possible when engineers devised internal structures instead of traditional load-bearing walls to support weight, he said. In the case of the Bisbee Building, reinforced concrete was used to support the structure, which represents the Chicago school of high-rise architecture. The building's top is very characteristic of the style, he said.

The Florida Life Building -- It was built in 1911, also by Klutho. The building also is one of the city's first high-rise structures and represents the Chicago style made famous by Louis Sullivan and Frank Lloyd Wright. The building is distinguished by its used of terra cotta accents and fired clay with a glaze that creates a multicolored effect, McEachin said.

The Florida National Bank -- The building, commonly called "the marble bank," is of the neo-classical style, which reflects Grecian and Roman architecture. It was built in 1916

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here it comes: why don't we call this what it really is ... major renovation and window replacement. if there ever was a non-project, this is it! the buildings are so far gone that trying to bring them back seems like trying to make mountain out of a molehill? i know that everyone on the forum is after "historic preservation", and i think that of any of the buildings the Marble Bank is the one most suited for preservation. second would be the Bisbee... but the Florida bank just needs to come down>>> as for the rendering??? um, all i see are the same buildings with new windows and some hidden glass core sticking out of the top of the buildings??? um, nice design??? i think i saw that in my first day of architecture school! in one of the emptiest blocks in the city center>> there needs to be some concentration on what is going on in the empty/parking lots around these!!...

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This is going to be a huge job. All of the work, however, will be on the insides of these buildings from the basements to the roof. There is a large amount of structural renovations and upgrades necessary to bring these building up to par.

A job like this will most likely also be a money loser for KBJ as well as their subs. My firm competed with another architect to win the bid and, quite frankly, from a profit standpoint were lucky not to get the job. A historical renovation, especially one of this magnitude, is most certainly a MUCH more complicated project than that of a new construction project of the same size.

I personally think KBJ's design is well suited. It restores the current buildings to thier previous grandure and adds a bit of modern flare with the glass atrium connecting the two. As said before, the main concern will once again be the parking. These guys really have their work cut out for them.

I'm waiting to see more information on their proposal, also more renderings of the other sides of the buildings.

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there needs to be some concentration on what is going on in the empty/parking lots around these!!...

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I agree. I think that what is done with the surrounding vacant lots is nearly just as important to the heart of downtown, as restoring the buildings themselves. This project is going to cost a ton of money and will ultimately be a failure without the city's help. That's not a good thing considering the large number of projects waiting in line. Lets just hope the Fund can save and restore as much as possible, on that site.

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here it comes:  why don't we call this what it really is ...  major renovation and window replacement.  if there ever was a non-project, this is it!  the buildings are so far gone that trying to bring them back seems like trying to make mountain out of a molehill?  i know that everyone on the forum is after "historic preservation", and i think that of any of the buildings the Marble Bank is the one most suited for preservation.  second would be the Bisbee...  but the Florida bank just needs to come down>>>  as for the rendering???  um, all i see are the same buildings with new windows and some hidden glass core sticking out of the top of the buildings???  um, nice design???  i think i saw that in my first day of architecture school! in one of the emptiest blocks in the city center>>  there needs to be some concentration on what is going on in the empty/parking lots around these!!...

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Preservation means you PRESERVE and RESTORE the original appearance. Who ever said it wasn't going to be a renovation? The windows have to be replaced because they are gone. Mr. Klutho has already completed the exterior design. KBJ is restoring that, and doing a new interior. The glass core is likely to hold elevators and stairwells to meet the newer codes. The city should spend whatever is necessary to restore all three of these buildings, because it allowed the deteriation. If I let my property deteriorate to the point that it is unsafe, they would fine me and compel me to do repairs. What's the difference?

Undoubtedly the Fund realizes that parking is going to have to be acquired somewhere. They own the garage at Main and Monroe. They may reserve spots in it for the future renters/owners. Or they may "swap" those spaces for ones in a closer garage. Besides, the original plan had a garage facing Adams, maybe the Fund got that land in the deal.

I want to know if these will be apartments or condos.

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I agree Vic. These buildings are very important historically to Jacksonville. Klutho's designs are very impressive and are very historical. Why should we tear down a building that is so important to our city? Do we want to wind up like Detroit? I don't think so. If the Fund wants to restore them, I am sure that they will find the money to make it a success. As said before, it is imperative that the city gets involved in this project in order to make it a success.

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I totally agree with the preservation of all these buildings. I am saddened by the wholesale destruction of our downtown that has occured over the last 30 years and we should at least save a few examples of early 20th century downtown Jacksonville after all that has been lost.

I suppose Cuban would go into London or Paris or Havana (not that Jacksonville is exactly like one of these cities) and level all the historic buildings there b/c he does not approve of their style. What is so bad about some preservation? Why do you hate history and why do you want to divorce the present from the past? If you want to build modernist crap (IMO), then build it on vacant lots. As we can see by the library, these modern-art-disguised-as-buildings dont wear well and are not loved by the general populace. Either way, let's save these buildings and move on to new developments too.

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We still have a long way to go, but check this out from the "In the Pipeline" section in the Times-Union:

Partial interior demolition and hazardous waste abatement for historic renovation into business and residential use, 115 N. Laura St. near Main Street, 22,706 square feet, $250,000; agent is John Keane, administrator; owner is Police and Fire Pension Fund; architect is KBJ Architects.

Partial interior demolition and hazardous waste abatement for historic renovation into business and residential use, 54 W. Forsyth St. between Laura and Main streets, two stories totaling 15,600 square feet, $250,000; agent is John Keane, administrator; owner is Police and Fire Pension Fund; architect is KBJ Architects.

Partial interior demolition and hazardous waste abatement for historic renovation into business and residential use, 51 W. Forsyth Street between Laura and Main streets, 10 stories totaling 44,000 square feet, $250,000; agent is John Keane, administrator; owner is Police and Fire Pension Fund; architect is KBJ Architects.

It's About Time!

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I know you guys are going to think I am crazy, and I haven't heard anyone in this particular forum state that this could be the case, but could it be possible that the glass addition, drawn into the depiction/artist rendering in the back of the "3" is a separate building/skyscraper being added? Yes it could be an addition to the "3," but it also could be a separate scraper connecting to the other 3 on the groundfloor level.

Just a thought. :blush:

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I haven't read much about KBJ's new design in the papers, but the old plan included a new 10 story structure, next to the Bisbee Building. At the very least, I'm sure the glass structure will serve as a circulation corridor. It would be great, if its an actually building that lines Adams. I guess we'll have to wait and see.

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I am jsut ready to see some kind of real action with this guy. We keep hearing about how they are going to do something... all the while, the smell of wood rot permiates the area...

But, we maybe on our way finally with it.

Cheers

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I haven't read much about KBJ's new design in the papers, but the old plan included a new 10 story structure, next to the Bisbee Building.  At the very least, I'm sure the glass structure will serve as a circulation corridor.  It would be great, if its an actually building that lines Adams.  I guess we'll have to wait and see.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Thanks Lake for your "all knowing" skyscraper wisdom! :)

I'm a happy camper now, though I wish they (contracters, developers, architects, etc.) wouldn't make us wait so long for final renditions and plans for projects!

FLORIDA SKYRISE ORDER

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By the way Lake...

Where in the H--- do you get all your info....

I mean I drool over the internet for this stuff, but man, you find it before it hits anywhere...

Who do you know man...

Cheers

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From a variety of sources, but mostly the local papers, local architects and rumors that fly in from my clients. I found the Laura Trio rendering on one of my co-workers desk a couple of months ago.

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