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bobliocatt

Downtown Jacksonville

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Hopefully, the entire core of downtown will be traveled by visitors, giving the beautiful Hemming Plaza area some spotlight.

BTW, Are we going to stick this thread at the top as well?

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Yes. Hello, the beaches area! The beaches will be prime spots for the Super Bowl as well as downtown and will draw in big crowds.

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London Bridge's facade getting $97,000 facelift

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The facade work at London Bridge will likely include new window glass, new doors, stucco replacement and exterior signage. DAVE CONE/The Times-Union

Downtown restaurant and pub London Bridge is set to get a $97,000 makeover thanks in part to a city grant approved by the Jacksonville Economic Development Commission.

Although the London Bridge building is not located in the Bay Street Town Center, a redevelopment project that stretches along Bay Street from the Jacksonville Landing to Berkman Plaza, the commission linked London Bridge's facade funding to the project.

"While it's not on the primary corridor where our emphasis has been focused, we think it will help with entire Bay Street area," Battle said.

This story can be found on Jacksonville.com at http://www.jacksonville.com/tu-online/stor..._17626220.shtml.

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Hopefully the Fund will be able to get this completed quickly. Something definately needs to be done with those buildings.

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Quickly is the key. We don't want an eyesore there for the Super Bowl crowd. Time to crank it up on all aspects of Super Bowl prep.

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Forum for the Future of the Southbank......

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I'd love to attend this, but I am very involved with the Super Boel Host Committee, and our Pep Rally (All 9,300 Volunteers) is Saturday (all morning to mid-afternoon).

If there is any thought of rescheduling (I know, wishful thinking), please post the time.

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By the way...

The Project Identity Sign has been posted for Berkman Plaza's Phase II (Second Tower). It is being developed by the Harbor Companies (David Berkman/Alan Travis, the developers of Phase I), and is being marketed as Apartments, not Condominiums.

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City, LandMar reach preliminary deal

By MARY KELLI PALKA

The Times-Union

Jacksonville Mayor John Peyton and a local company have come up with a preliminary deal for the development of The Shipyards, a large piece of property downtown near the Sports Complex.

LandMar Group LLC would put in $22.5 million of its own money to pay for public improvements on the property, and the city would put in $3.5 million for those same improvements, under a draft agreement between the city and LandMar.

The $26 million combined, in addition to about $14 million already spent by former developer TriLegacy Group LLC, would then equal the $40 million the city originally issued in tax-exempt bonds intended to pay for the improvement. The city said about $26 million was improperly used by TriLegacy, and LandMar is offering to put in the money.

"We see that as our first obligation to meet, to make sure the citizens and community as a whole are made whole," said Ed Burr, LandMar's chief executive officer.

Burr said he thinks $22.5 million is a reasonable investment to make.

"We just think The Shipyards site offers a tremendous opportunity," Burr said.

But Burr and Peyton's chief of staff, Steve Diebenow, said the two sides need more time to work on the deal. Diebenow on Tuesday asked the City Council to extend the deadline, currently set for the end of the month, until April 30.

Council President Elaine Brown said she wouldn't want to wait longer than April 30 to finalize negotiations, but Councilman Reggie Fullwood said he wasn't in favor of waiting anymore.

"Either this new developer is going to step up or we move on and do what we have to do," Fullwood said.

Under the draft agreement with the city, LandMar would split the public improvement work up in two phases. The $26 million would pay for the first phase, with the city's $3.5 million portion not being paid until phase one is complete, according to the draft agreement. The $3.5 million is the remainder of the original $40 million in bond money that would have been given to TriLegacy when the public projects were complete.

To pay for the second phase of public improvements, LandMar would front $10 million, with the city paying that money back later with property tax revenue. The details of the public improvements hasn't been determined. Diebenow said the additional $10 million is needed for public improvements, in part, because of rising construction costs and the delay in the project.

Burr said he's still working on his plans for the rest of the property, but he said he does want to offer residential space for people of various income levels.

When TriLegacy was developing The Shipyards, it was touted in 2001 as a $860 million project that would include condos, shops, office space, a hotel, boat slips and $40 million for a public park, Riverwalk expansion and road improvements.

TriLegacy's role in The Shipyards property came to an end last year when the city questioned how the $36.5 million had been spent. TriLegacy maintains it followed its contract with the city when it spent money on private portions of the property. City attorneys said the money should have only been spent on the public portions but said only about $14 million went toward the public portions of the project.

A Duval County grand jury has been reviewing The Shipyards project since November.

The first $3.1 million repayment on the tax-exempt bonds is due this year. The plan had been for bonds to be paid back with property tax revenue. Burr said under the draft agreement with the city, LandMar would begin repaying the bonds, but would be paid back over time with property tax revenue.

A redevelopment agreement between the city and LandMar will need approval from the Jacksonville Economic Development Commission and the City Council.

mary.palkajacksonville.com, (904) 359-4104

This story can be found on Jacksonville.com at http://www.jacksonville.com/tu-online/stor..._17665909.shtml.

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^^That's good news about Berkman and the Shipyards!

...but he said he does want to offer residential space for people of various income levels...

^That's good to hear! Not all luxury condos.

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By the way...

The Project Identity Sign has been posted for Berkman Plaza's Phase II (Second Tower).  It is being developed by the Harbor Companies (David Berkman/Alan Travis, the developers of Phase I), and is being marketed as Apartments, not Condominiums.

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Does the sign have a rendering? If so, is it identical to the phase I building?

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Good news about the Shipyards. That is the first good news that I have heard about it in a while. I hoe that it gets back on its feet and going again.

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Council to consider Shipyards extension

The City Council did not vote on extending the deadline for a developer to take over the troubled Shipyards project, but will probably vote on the issue in two weeks. City officials and LandMar Group LLC sought the extension Tuesday night from the City Council to try to work out an agreement concerning the Shipyards project Downtown.

LandMar was asked in August to take over the Shipyards project from TriLegacy Group LLC and has until the end of January to make a decision. The City and TriLegacy have disputed how TriLegacy spent $36.5 million in incentives for the project.

LandMar now wants until April 30 to evaluate the project, and the City and the developer have a draft agreement it presented to the City Council as part of its request for an extension.

Under the draft agreement, LandMar would spend $22.5 million on public improvements at the 45-acre property, including extending the Northbank Riverwalk and building a park. The City would kick in $3.5 million that was earmarked for the project but never spent. Those funds, combined with improvements already made by TriLegacy, would bring to $40 million the amount of public improvements made at the site.

The draft agreement further states that LandMar would start the first phase of the mixed-use project within two years of closing the deal and finish that phase within three years of starting. The second phase of the project would start within five year of closing and be finished within three years of its start.

Though a definitive agreement has not been reached, a LandMar spokesman said the developer is interested in the property.

"LandMar is actively pursuing the acquisition," said Jim Doyle, LandMar's vice president of marketing.

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Council to consider Shipyards extension

The City Council did not vote on extending the deadline for a developer to take over the troubled Shipyards project, but will probably vote on the issue in two weeks. City officials and LandMar Group LLC sought the extension Tuesday night from the City Council to try to work out an agreement concerning the Shipyards project Downtown.

 

LandMar was asked in August to take over the Shipyards project from TriLegacy Group LLC and has until the end of January to make a decision. The City and TriLegacy have disputed how TriLegacy spent $36.5 million in incentives for the project.

LandMar now wants until April 30 to evaluate the project, and the City and the developer have a draft agreement it presented to the City Council as part of its request for an extension.

Under the draft agreement, LandMar would spend $22.5 million on public improvements at the 45-acre property, including extending the Northbank Riverwalk and building a park. The City would kick in $3.5 million that was earmarked for the project but never spent. Those funds, combined with improvements already made by TriLegacy, would bring to $40 million the amount of public improvements made at the site.

The draft agreement further states that LandMar would start the first phase of the mixed-use project within two years of closing the deal and finish that phase within three years of starting. The second phase of the project would start within five year of closing and be finished within three years of its start.

Though a definitive agreement has not been reached, a LandMar spokesman said the developer is interested in the property.

"LandMar is actively pursuing the acquisition," said Jim Doyle, LandMar's vice president of marketing.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

who is the source for this?

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Wait, so it would be a full 5 years before anything is completed on the site?

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It COULD be five years, that is the ceiling, not the floor. I'm sure that Landmar would want to start more or less as soon as they can. Time is money, so once they have invested money in it, they will want to see a return. These clauses are probably more to assure the city that they will keep the project on the front burner.

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BTW, There's no rendering on the Berkman phase II sign. It just says that its coming soon and that it will be a 22 story apartment tower with 200 units. Hopefully, this one will, at least offer retail space, along Bay Street.

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BTW, There's no rendering on the Berkman phase II sign.  It just says that its coming soon and that it will be a 22 story apartment tower with 200 units.  Hopefully, this one will, at least offer retail space, along Bay Street.

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I think it's fair to suppose that this 22 story 200 unit phase two will be a virtual clone of phase one. but short of finding the developer's telephone number and offering to design them a better tower for free, I really don't think there's much chance at street level retail. I hope I'm wrong though.

While the developers are certainly at fault for this, especially after witnessing the poor street interaction of phase one, I find it hard to blame them too much. After all, they are across the street from that horrid police building. If I were the developer of that site, I'd probably have a strong desire to turn my back to that thing too. Mr Morgan (the modernist architect responsible for the police building) did so much damage to "the street" with his design, that I don't think anything could improve bay street more than its demolition. It is possibly one of the only situations I can imagine where a surface parking lot or a big-box store might actually improve the urbanity of a site! (can you tell that I hate "modernism"?)

I'm not exactly excusing berkman's designers ... but I guess I can somewhat sympathize with the choice they had to make.

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I think it's fair to suppose that this 22 story 200 unit phase two will be a virtual clone of phase one. but short of finding the developer's telephone number and offering to design them a better tower for free, I really don't think there's much chance at street level retail. I hope I'm wrong though.

While the developers are certainly at fault for this, especially after witnessing the poor street interaction of phase one, I find it hard to blame them too much. After all, they are across the street from that horrid police building. If I were the developer of that site, I'd probably have a strong desire to turn my back to that thing too. Mr Morgan (the modernist architect responsible for the police building) did so much damage to "the street" with his design, that I don't think anything could improve bay street more than its demolition. It is possibly one of the only situations I can imagine where a surface parking lot or a big-box store might actually improve the urbanity of a site! (can you tell that I hate "modernism"?)

I'm not exactly excusing berkman's designers ... but I guess I can somewhat sympathize with the choice they had to make.

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Berkman phase II is intended to be a mirror of the first tower.

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I think Phase II will also include like 5-10 more townhomes on the waterfront portion.

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I think Phase II will also include like 5-10 more townhomes on the waterfront portion.

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Yes it did, at least in the original plan. I hope they will alter the floor plans somewhat though. I think that has been part of the reason that only about half of the original 20 have sold.

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Yes it did, at least in the original plan.  I hope they will alter the floor plans somewhat though.  I think that has been part of the reason that only about half of the original 20 have sold.

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Well, that and because they are priced at $600k-$700k !!! I just don't think the downtown jax market can handle townhomes that expensive. In fact, I'm pleasantly surprised that they've sold as many as they have.

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Study lists possible convention center sites

Public won't know until CVB board decides on a final choice from among 'eight or nine.'

By CHRISTOPHER CALNAN

The Times-Union

A Jacksonville & the Beaches Convention and Visitors Bureau official said the organization's board was briefed Wednesday on a completed convention center location study but the report won't be released to the public until the CVB decides on a site.

CVB Chairwoman Margo Dundon said Thursday the report lists the pros and cons of eight or nine potential sites without providing a ranking or a conclusive recommendation. However, about half of the sites have fewer "challenges" than the others, she said.

The CVB expects to use the report to determine the costs and problems of developing each of the sites while considering the best location for a convention facility. Dundon declined to name the sites being considered -- except the existing Prime Osborn Convention Center.

She said the study won't be released until the CVB makes its final recommendation.

read the rest at ...

http://www.jacksonville.com/tu-online/stor..._17685538.shtml

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