Plans to change the face of Downtown Jacksonville

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- One-way streets could become part of downtown history as plans are underway to change the big picture look of the Downtown.

A study is planned to determine what it takes to make the Downtown more friendly with two-way streets.

Mayor Alvin Brown is proposing a number of changes to give sizzle to the heart of the city. The projects range in size and cost with the Jacksonville Landing on the water being the center piece.

Proposed for The Landing is a $12 million public investment in property owned by the city adjoining the St. Johns River. The plan envisions a plaza between the Landing between the Florida Times-Union Performing Arts Center. Inside the Landing an amphitheater is being considered to replace the stage in the heart of the courtyard. While the city would pay for the improvements any construction would also have to be approved by the owners of the Landing.

"Keep in mind this is public land...just as the Riverwalk is. We feel like this is our side of this to improve it at this stage," said the mayor's spokesperson David DeCamp.

Also included in the rework of the Downtown is redesigning Metro Park at a cost of $250,000 for conceptual plans. The city first wants to see what's possible before committing to construction.

Demolition work is also envisioned for Bay Street with the vacant courthouse on the chopping block. The courthouse, if torn down, would become a green area until it is developed.

The city council this summer will review the Mayor's wish list of projects and offer input on what should be built or torn down.


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