This week in Building Up Jax, a design has been chosen for the Jacksonville Regional Transportation Center. We also answer a reader question, plus a few other notes.
Progress on Regional Transportation Center
The Jacksonville Transportation Authority announced this past week that they’ve selected a design for the proposed Jacksonville Regional Transportation Center. Construction is expected to begin in January and will be completed in 2019 at a cost of $33 million, according to Jax Daily Record.
The center will feature stations for the Skyway, JTA’s regular bus routes, and the new First Coast Flyer service. It also includes an Uber hub and a station for bus routes connecting Jacksonville and Orlando. The project has been in the planning phases for years, but will now finally come to fruition right when it’s most needed with the development of First Coast Flyer.
Reader Jason S. asked us about the large lot on University Blvd. W. adjacent to I-95 that’s laid dormant for several years now, and if there were any imminent plans for development.
Unfortunately, the answer seems to be no. Home Depot owns the land, and has since at least 2007. They were originally planning to develop a store there, with additional outparcels along University Blvd. In late 2007 and early 2008, demolition took place on two run-down hotels, a gas station, and a former IHOP that had previously occupied the space. Around that time the economy went into a lengthy recession which negatively affected many development projects in Jacksonville, including Home Depot’s plans.
Now that the economy has recovered, there are still no imminent plans for construction. However, Home Depot has held onto the land rather than selling it off, indicating that they likely plan to revisit their plans at some point. It’s certainly an intriguing piece of land; while the stretch of University Blvd. it occupies is rather dilapidated, the land is right next to the I-95 exit and could certainly breathe some life into an otherwise struggling corridor.
A few notes
- Two relatively-new Krispy Kreme locations on Merrill Rd. and University Blvd. will close, according to multiple sources. The stores were apparently underperforming by the company’s standards.
- Southeastern Grocers, parent company of Winn-Dixie, has moved their headquarters from the westside to the Prominence office park off of Baymeadows Rd. The office park, previously known as Freedom Commerce Centre, has been undergoing extensive renovations in recent months to attract new tenants.
- Ashco Inc. will develop a shopping center at 1198 Beach Blvd., according to Jacksonville Business Journal. The center’s tenants have not been announced yet, but are expected to be mostly restaurants.