Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

vicupstate

Blueprint for Prosperity

Recommended Posts


Vic: This is a big problem. We need to raise the average wages here. I am not sure what yet another committee will do though (Peyton seems great at forming these). I think the proper response is to reduce regulations and taxes to entice business and actively seek out higher paying employers. Go out there and find another Fidelity that is unhappy where it is, for example.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Vic:  This is a big problem.  We need to raise the average wages here.  I am not sure what yet another committee will do though (Peyton seems great at forming these).  I think the proper response is to reduce regulations and taxes to entice business and actively seek out higher paying employers.  Go out there and find another Fidelity that is unhappy where it is, for example.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I agree about the committee thing. This guy seems to need a committee to use the restroom. Whatever happened to the concept of having a competent staff (or one guy named Sam Mousa)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looking at high wage areas, the most common factor appears to be education. Not only grade school, but higher education. Improve this, and the high paying jobs will come here without giving away lots of tax $$.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looking at high wage areas, the most common factor appears to be education.  Not only grade school, but higher education.  Improve this, and the high paying jobs will come here without giving away lots of tax $$.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I agree with you completely. Although there are some partnerships with the City of Jacksonville and UNF, I'd like for the existing ones to be strengthened and new ones formed. The average salary of a Coggin College of Business professor is in excess of $100,00 and I think is closer to $120,000, according to a spring issue of the UNF newspaper. My college, the Computing, Engineering and Construction one, boasts an even higher salary.

One of my friends graduated last semester as is now employed by Fidelity. Others have left the city because there simply weren't many opportunities. It's too bad that was the compelling reason, because the majority of those who left would have preferred to stay. Does anyone have any suggestions?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

First: This is what happens when a city with Jacksonville's population encourages lopsided, segregationist development the way we have. It isn't that the potential for income is decreased; in certain areas, the potential is great. We do; however, continue to see economic decline in almost the whole of the Northwest quadrant and, to a lesser extent, in the Southwest quadrant. The poor are getting poorer (or increasing in numbers) faster than the rich are getting richer.

Secondly: St. John's and Clay counties have been extremely competitive with housing development but at great environmental cost. Many people are working in Jacksonville but commuting from one of these other two counties; not because Jacksonville is too expensive for living but because St. John's and Clay are the hot places to live right now and convenient to where they're working on the Southside. Jacksonville's development deep into the Southside has done nothing but encourage this kind of migration. The office park I work in on the Southside is slightly closer to Clay and St. John's as it is to my home in Springfield. The majority of the squat, shoebox buildings that litter the area could have been replaced with one tall building Downtown but where are the workers going to live? What attractive and convenient new subdivision is as close to Downtown as Clay or St. John's county is to Southside? Answer: none.

Finally: To cure this, we need to pull development back in toward the core. Control the sprawl, once and for all. Invest in infrastructure improvements and redevelopment of existing developed areas (let's hire an urban planner from Portland, Oregon to help us visualize this). Thanks to the magnet program, the best elementary and secondary schools in all of Northeast Florida are within the urban core. Jacksonville University is on the bank of the river in West Arlington, overlooking the docks at Tallyrand -- none of this has addressed the economic depression in these areas.

An educated populous is highly important but education does nothing to keep people from moving to where home and work are more accessible to one another. Jacksonville has made it too convenient for educated, higher-wage-earners to live out of town.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

An educated populous is highly important but education does nothing to keep people from moving to where home and work are more accessible to one another. Jacksonville has made it too convenient for educated, higher-wage-earners to live out of town.

You are right about this. It's as if we have two CBDs (the other one being Southpoint/Deerwood) and I think it's improbable that will change in the near future. Citibank's new site is roughly half the size of The Avenues and is close to the Duval-St. Johns border. More buildings are under construction and proposed on the large secluded campus, but judging by traffic volumes, it will be just a short while before it's no longer perceived as a remote location.

I considered moving to a new apartment in Bartram Park to avoid the morning traffic and also to provide a route to UNF that bypasses I-95 and JTB (or "the JTB" as was referenced in a thread from months ago). A friend of mine lives in a new home in Middleburg and commutes to Gate Parkway. Even though her drive is anywhere from 45 minutes-1 hour, she prefers that to a job Downtown, where it could easily take an hour and 15 minutes to reach her place of employment.

My direct manager lives in Ortega, but other upper-level managers live in Ponte Vedra, St. Johns and Clay counties. Not only are housing prices within their reach, the commutes are shorter and less harrowing than going Downtown. I wish the Urban Planning and Development Fairy could come in, consolidate Downtown's CBD with the mess that exists on the Southside and move the houses in surrounding counties to that area.

Aside from incentives, is there anything in the works to encourage businesses to operate north and west of the river? If there was, it probably wouldn't do too much because of the stigma associated with living in those areas. I viewed the list of the 2004 murders posted on Jacksonville.com and the majority of them occurred in the Northwest Quadrant. What solutions can you think of? :blink:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My solution would be attempting to establish commuter rail along FEC's tracks, from downtown to St. Augustine and lines on CSX's tracks from downtown into other areas of the region, such as the Westside, Northside and Orange Park. A line along FEC's tracks could have convenient stops all the major intersections along Phillips Highway (ex. CR 210, University Blvd, Baymeadows, St. Augustine Rd, Race Track Rd, etc.) It wouldn't solve all of our traffic congestion problems, but it would give residents in far out places like Bartram Springs or Orange Park the option of parking their vehicles in a Park & Ride lot and taking a train into town, that doesn't have to stop in rush our traffic congestion.

It would also be a lot cheaper and quicker to establish. For example, its estimated to cost $700 million alone, to expand the Matthews Bridge. Since we only have $20 million set aside for it, it will take at least 20 -30 years before construction ever takes place. By comparison, many other metros, such as Nashville, Orlando and Austin are looking to establish region wide commuter rail systems for as low as $100 million, in some cases.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Will the new Matthews bridge be needed to have the height clearance it does now? It seems like all the shipping has moved out of the downtown area.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Its being designed to have a similar height clearance for the ships coming into Commodore Point (between the Matthews & Hart Bridges) and the occassional cruise ships docking in front of the Hyatt Hotel.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Its being designed to have a similar height clearance for the ships coming into Commodore Point (between the Matthews & Hart Bridges) and the occassional cruise ships docking in front of the Hyatt Hotel.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

^ I checked the property records, and the Commodore Point land holdings are "only" valued at about 30-40 million dollars. But more importantly - as Russel indicated - they are the ONLY properties left that might actually need a higher bridge clearance. The occassional cruise ships and historical "tall ships" aren't enough justification alone for higher clearance.

The DOT needs to do a cost savings analysis of constructing a new bridge with only the Acosta's clearance height. Then compare that against buying up the Commodore Point land (which could be sold to condo developers to minimize costs anyway). It seems like they could be saving tens of tens of millions of dollars.

But anyway, I doubt they have that kind of vision. It's all play money for the bureaucrats. What's a few hundred million dollars to them anyway ... as long as they can follow the path of least resistance ...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here's a novel idea: Bring the cruise ships to Commodore Point or Tallyrand and encourage freight shipping growth in the Blount Island area. Give cruise passengers a little taste of Downtown and a St. John's River cruise on their way to points more exotic while keeping the massive ocean freighters closer to the ocean. It's worked for Tampa (look at Channelside and Ybor today compared to ten years ago).

With all of the tourist dollars that flow through the rest of Florida, I'm amazed that we work at steering people away from the heart of our city. Did Flagler really beat us that badly?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

^ Unfortunately, larger modern cruise ships don't easily fit under the Dames Point bridge. Therefore it's apparently not economical to build a full scale cruise terminal south of Dames Point. Although, the superbowl proved that small sized cruise ships can dock at the Hyatt on the riverwalk.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

^ Unfortunately, larger modern cruise ships don't easily fit under the Dames Point bridge. Therefore it's apparently not economical to build a full scale cruise terminal south of Dames Point. Although, the superbowl proved that small sized cruise ships can dock at the Hyatt on the riverwalk.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Isn't the Dames Point bridge east of the current cruise terminal though?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Isn't the Dames Point bridge east of the current cruise terminal though?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Yes, which led to tremendous controversy over its long term financial viability. That site is still only a "temporary" terminal, to the best of my knowledge.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, which led to tremendous controversy over its long term financial viability. That site is still only a "temporary" terminal, to the best of my knowledge.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

If it is only temporary then it is even more reasonable to move it to downtown. Jacksonville doesn't have to get the biggest cruise ships possible. Putting a medium size cruise ship downtown would do more for the economy then a big cruise ship east of dames point (if it is going to be west of Dames Point it should be downtown) in my opinion.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree. Its still not a given that we'll ever see the biggest cruise ships on the market come to town. It would do much more for the local economy to focus on smaller/medium sized ships, such as the one that docked in front of the Hyatt, instead of a terminal near the Mayport Ferry.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes, which led to tremendous controversy over its long term financial viability. That site is still only a "temporary" terminal, to the best of my knowledge.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Cruise Terminal

^ here is an article that talks about what you were referring to.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Port Authority has abandoned their plans to take, what I believe, they call Pine Island. Its located, just south of Hecksher Drive, about half way between Blount Island and the Ferry.

From looking at Google Earth, unless they're going to build a cruise ship terminal at Fort Caroline or Hugenot or fill in some land, there are no more undeveloped parcel of land along the river, east of the Dames Point to build a cruise ship terminal.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.