Downtown Jacksonville growing after years of stagnation: Report

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Florida Construction News staff writer

Downtown Jacksonville is growing again after years of stagnation, according to a new report from Downtown Vision, which tracks key indicators of urban revitalization including development and construction.

However, according to the report, more than one quarter of the 7.9 million square feet of office space downtown was vacant this year.

The 2023 State of Downtown Report is an 18-month recap of progress and development in Downtown Jacksonville from January 1, 2022 through June 30, 2023, published by Downtown Vision.

Mayor Donna Deegan says more than $500,000 in projects have broken ground since the last report, including the Artist Walk and Riverfront Plaza parks, The Shipyards and Home2 Suites. The report also noted FIS and JEA headquarters added more than 500,000 square feet of office space.

“I am thrilled that this year’s report tracks a significant increase in public and private projects in the pipeline, totaling roughly $8 billion, which is up from $5 billion last year,” she said in the report. “And these projects are advancing swiftly, thanks in large part to the Downtown Investment Authority.

“Some of the major projects completed since the last State of Downtown report include Ashley Square Apartments, new headquarters for FIS and JEA, the Fuller Warren Bridge Shared Use Path (SUP), VyStar’s new garage that is housing the Jacksonville Children’s Chorus, the Miller Electric Performance Center, and the Critical Care Tower at Wolfson Children’s Hospital.”Also, more than 1,400 residential units have been completed in the last five years, according to the report, and another 1,500 are under construction.

The report also highlights plans to establish a network of dedicated bike and pedestrian trails and a comprehensive parking strategy to reduce the number of garages and lots.

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