JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Demolish and rebuild is what's being proposed to give The Jacksonville Landing a new lease on life.
Mayor Alvin Brown and Landing owner Tony Sleiman are behind proposed changes to the 26 year-old Downtown attracttion that borders the St. Johns River.
Michelle Rhoades-Jones has been in business at the Landing almost from day one, 25 years all together. Hana & Her Sister sells fine jewelry and has moved several times over the years now near the front entrance.
"It is sad but it is also exciting to see what is to come," said Rhoades-Jones during the lunch hour on Thursday.
Nearby, Bill Burbridge is busy as an artist penciling out caricatures. He has six years working near the front entrance of the Landing.
"I want to see proof, I want to see concrete broke ... be exciting when it happens," said Burbridge, who noted he has seen various plans for changes at the Landing over the years.
The Landing could be opened up for more events and entertainmentin the future and possibly economic growth, if the plan presented Wednesday to the Downtown InvestmentAuthority is put into action.
"Thestars are lined up to make it happen. Everybody wants a change downtown. It'sold and it needs to be redone. It needs something new," Sleiman said.
Alan Wilson of TheHaskell Company presented the redevelopment plan, saying the city needs anidentifier.
Haskell wants to tearthe Landing down and rebuild it, Wilson said. Parking, hotels, restaurants and workforcehousing would be included in the new Landing structure, which would be severalstories tall.
The idea is to connect Downtown and the Riverfront, Wilson said.
"Our goal should be to make it iconic," saidBrown. "To make sure it becomes a destination.To make sure it's user friendly. I want people to use the landing not just fromnine to five, but seven days a week."
The redevelopment is still in the planning stages. There is no cost estimate for the construction of the design as yet.
Sleiman said it will be a public-private partnership and the city and mayor are on board to move forward