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bobliocatt

Jacksonville: San Marco

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The neighborhood of San Marco is my next stop on the tour of Jacksonville. During the mid 1920's, real estate developer Telfair Stockton proposed an 80-acre sudivision with a triangular shaped commercial district "San Marco Square" designed and named after the famous St. Mark's Square in Venice, a mile south of downtown on the east bank of the St. John's River. Today, San Marco lives on as a trendy entertainment, shopping, & arts district.

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San Marco Square

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looking at Riverside/Avondale on the other side of the river

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This old established suburb oozes character.The sort of place to slowly drive around and have a geek!.Interesting. :huh:

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Looks like an interesting neighborhood. There seems to be a good mix of architecture - old and new. There appears to be some nice restaurants & stores too.

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What are "The Lofts"? Where is that brick building, cause I haven't seen it. And what was that box-like plywood building? I agree, San Marco really adds alot of character to the city! Great Pics!

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thanks for the comments!

Urban Legend,

The 88 year old former South Jackosnville Elementary School on Cedar St. (between Flager and Belmonte Avenues) is being converted into a 38 unit loft complex called the Lofts of San Marco. The box-like structures will be a block long row of two story townhouses along Belmonte Avenue. The townhouses are being built on the school's former playground area.

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Renovating a school into lofts is a great idea! If only Detroit could pull something like that off.

Detroit is trading the 1922 Cass Tech High School

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For the new Cass Tech High School, which will open in the fall

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And of course, in typical Detroit fashion, the old Cass Tech High School will be demolished for what else? Yes, you guessed it...a parking lot! You'd think they could at least sell the old school and sell it to a developer to renovate into lofts or something. But I guess not. So take one last look, because soon it'll be gomne forever. Another Detroit architectural gem demolished for nothing. :(

Ok, back to discussing San Marco....

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^why demolish Cass Tech? That's a beautiful building. Is there a need for a large parking lot in that area? Your city council is slowly destroying the character of Detroit. When are elections?

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Actually this one can't be blamed on city council, but rather on the Detroit Public Schools. DPS seems to think that they need to make parking for the new school. What I don't understand, is why can they not use the parking they currently use?

It seems that this project is practically designed to destroy the urban fabric that remains of the neighborhood. I understand that the old Cass Tech High is VERY costly to maintain, and the infrastructure of the building is falling apart. The building is just not modernized to meet today's standards. In fact, I support the new school, because it is in the best interest of the students who will attend it. However, I do not understand why the old building must be razed to make way for a parking lot. Part of the decision lies in the fact that DPS is a failing school district that is always strapped for cash, and is run by the state of Michigan. The district simply cannot afford to keep properties like this for any reason. My school district's oldest building is from 1922 also (it is MUCH smaller than Cass Tech) & the renovations to our building are going to cost $20-25 Million. To renovate Cass Tech to modern standards could easily take $150 Million, and possibly even more than that. Plus, the maintenance costs on such a building are very high. What I still don't understand is why they cannot sell it to a developer to convert into lofts or apartments of some kind. That would get the property out of DPS' hands, and create more tax revenue for the city.

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Neo, if your coming to visit St. Augustine, a brief stop for lunch or a stroll, or at least a quick drive thru, around San Marco (just south of I-95 & downtown) is a must.

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