City Begins Expansion of Northbank Riverwalk | News
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- There's work being done on Bay Street between the Police Memorial Building and The Sports complex. It could be called sowing seeds into the future growth of downtown.
"With the mayor's vision we've got to make the infrastructure is in place for development to occur," said Paul Crawford.
Dreams to expand the Northbank Riverwalk were crushed when a planned development failed.
Shortly after that a construction accident at the Berkman 2 plaza brought that project to a dead end; it's future is uncertain.
"I wish we could get some action by the developer but that isn't the city owned facility," said Crawford.
Crawford said the city is spending $270 thousand dollars to connect the Northbank Riverwalk to the sidewalks on Bay street.
"It was through funds that was appropriated by improvements to the shipyards by the previous administration," said Crawford.
Crawford, acting director of the Jacksonville Economic Development Council, said the expansion will have all of the amenities of the riverwalk.
"We're coming up to Bay Street so that we will have a loop for joggers to go back and forth or continue to the sports complex," he said.
At the same time the city is spending another $900 thousand to dredge Hogan's creek which is in the same block.
"It is the expansion of the Hogan's Creek," said Crawford.
The work, when it is finished, will relieve the flooding that happens around the Maxwell Coffee plant just about every time there's heavy rain.
The fact that the two projects are taking place at the same time is coincidental, but Crawford believes the million dollar investment that could spark new interest in downtown development.
"If we can go ahead and show physical improvements to the people who not only live here," said Crawford, "but people who are actually concerned about our downtown that shows progress."
The projects will be completed this Summer.