Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing Park

The Durkeeville Historical Society and city of Jacksonville collaborated to dedicate the birth site of Jacksonville’s Johnson brothers as the “Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing” Park. The park is named after the song written by John Rosamond Johnson and James Weldon Johnson in the late 1800s, which the NAACP calls the “Black National Anthem.”

As part of the development strategy for LaVilla, the current Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing park will be expanded and designed to celebrate James Weldon Johnson and the African-American experience. The park was designed by renowned landscape architect Walter Hood to honor the legacy of Jacksonville’s native sons, the Johnson Brothers, and will be the first of several cultural sites to be featured.

The park will invite people from all walks of life to honor this important Jacksonville native. The inspiration of the plan for the park begins with lifting upward. Historic maps and property lines of the parcel reveal new geometries in the present that are then rotated and angled to create movement within the landscape. The interplay between lifted lawn and the shotgun house placed on the parcel of the historic Johnson House articulates the past on an empty, grassy lot and creates a new resolution of singular space on the site.

Forsyth Parking Garage

Located on the south side of West Forsyth Street between Main and Laura streets, the Forsyth Parking Garage will provide parking for the 1,000 employees VyStar Credit Union is relocating to its headquarters campus Downtown, the nearby Barnett and Laura Street Trio projects and the general public. The seven-story, 280,804 square-foot parking garage will provide 780 parking spaces as well as 13,169 square-feet of ground-floor retail space.

Designed by Dasher Hurst Architects, the project will be built by Danis Construction.

Federal Reserve Building Adaptive Reuse

The Federal Reserve Building was constructed in 1923, and is a National Historic Landmark Building. The building has been abandoned for approximately 40+ years and will follow NPS guidelines for historic renovations. JWB Real Estate Companies will convert the Federal Reserve building into a mixed-use development including restaurant, business, and banquet space, along with an exterior courtyard for outdoor dining.

This historic redevelopment project a recipient of the DIA’s Downtown Preservation and Revitalization Program (DPRP). Learn more about the program here: https://dia.coj.net/Doing-Business-With-Us-(1)/Doing-Business-With-DIA/Downtown-Preservation-Revitalization-Program

Baptist Convention Building Adaptive Reuse

The Baptist Convention building was constructed in 1924, by Jacksonville famed Architect Henry John Klutho, and is a National Historic Landmark Building. The building has been abandoned for approximately 40+ years and will follow NPS guidelines for historic renovations. JWB Real Estate Companies will convert the Baptist Convention Building to a mixed-use facility, comprised of two future mercantile suites, future restaurant spaces, and 24 studio and 1-bedroom apartments.

This historic redevelopment project a recipient of the DIA’s Downtown Preservation and Revitalization Program (DPRP). Learn more about the program here: https://dia.coj.net/Doing-Business-With-Us-(1)/Doing-Business-With-DIA/Downtown-Preservation-Revitalization-Program

11 E. Forsyth Apartments

Located in the heart of downtown Jacksonville, 11 East Forsyth originally contained commercial offices and was opened by entrepreneur and film pioneer Stephen Andrew Lynch in 1927. The Vestcor Companies restored the charming exterior design and transformed this 17-story historical landmark into loft-style apartments with a luxury, urban design.

Available for private parties.

Emerald Trail Tier 1, Hogan Street Connector

Previously envisioned by the City of Jacksonville within the proposal for the 2019 Community Development Block Grant (CDBG), the Hogan Street Connector provides a missing connection between the Hogan Creek Greenway trail and the Northbank Riverwalk. The proposed trail begins on the northern end at Hogans Creek and interacts with the Florida State College at Jacksonville (FSCJ) campus as a shared-use street. The Hogan Street segment within Downtown will  become an elevated cycle track along the west side of Hogan Street adjacent to the pedestrian sidewalk. The one-way roadway of Hogan Street will be modified to remove one of the two travel lanes. This proposed roadway modification and elevated cycle track design is proposed from W. State Street south to Bay Street. The suggested design standard of the elevated cycle track is to create a safe and inviting pedestrian and bicycle dominated corridor.

The final block from Water Street to the Northbank Riverwalk will have the cycle track and pedestrian area transition into a shared-use side path.

Emerald Trail, Artist Walk

This Emerald Trail segment is the Artist Walk linear park space under the Fuller Warren Bridge from the St. Johns River across Riverside Avenue, Park Street, and College Street, ending at Riverside Park.  The Artist Walk will include the multi-use trail connection, parking, pedestrian corridors, landscaping and other park amenities. It will support the Riverside Arts Market, which has been open between the river and Riverside Avenue since 2009, and a much needed public space for the COJ.

Two-Way Street Conversions

In 2015, the City of Jacksonville adopted a revised Community Redevelopment Area (CRA) plan for the Northbank of Downtown, which includes a specific project for the reintroduction of two-way street systems within the Northbank. Subsequent Mobility Plan Updates and other transportation projects have consistently carried forward this directive and funds have been set aside within the CRA to begin implementation. The return to two way streets and resulting slower speeds are shown to stimulate economic growth and increase property values; facilitate more efficient use of on-street parking and ride share; enhance retail visibility and promote retail occupancy rates and success; improve walkability and increase pedestrian safety and pedestrian activity on the sidewalk; and increase residential demand and perceived quality of life for residents.

Forsyth Street and Adams Street are both identified as streets prioritized within the CRA Plan for two-way conversion. Segments of both streets lie within DIA’s targeted dining districts and their conversion to two-way streets complements other public and private redevelopment efforts.

The design phase of this project is underway.

Park Street Road Diet

This project provides modifications to existing roadway infrastructure within the Brooklyn Neighborhood to enhance pedestrian and bicycle connectivity and improve vehicular safety.  Improvements include adding a cycle track (2-way bicycle traffic), on street parking, expanded sidewalk areas, reduced roadway widths for safer pedestrian crossings and the addition of street trees. The design intent for Park Street will provide a more multi-modal street within the urban core linking LaVilla and the Regional Transportation Center with the Five Points and Riverside neighborhoods.  Enhanced pedestrian experiences will also promote economic development along the corridor. This project will connect Park Street to the Emerald Trail Model Project as well as McCoys Creek Greenway.

The Shipyards

A Notice of Disposition was issued for the Shipyards and Metropolitan Park and Iguana Investments was top scoring respondent. The conceptual master plan submitted called for more than 600 condos and apartments, 300,000 square feet of office space, 150,000 square feet of retail and commercial space, 300 hotel rooms, and a 250-slip marina on a 70-acre riverfront site. More recent concept plans released by Iguana have included a possible convention center. Phase 1 was to consist of 50-100 multi-family rental and/or for sale residential units, 200-250 room five-star hotel with restaurant, structured parking and amenities, 75,000± sf office/ restaurant/ retail, and public infrastructure.

Investment $500 million (overall master plan)