I've lived in the beaches area of Jacksonville, FL for the past 20+ years, and have seen the redevelopment of several areas, maximizing their locations and consumer friendliness. I have first hand witnessed some of these changes, and for the most part, they have been positive changes.
One of the items the voters of Atlantic Beach, Neptune Beach and Jacksonville Beach voted on a few years ago was a building height limit to keep the coastline looking like it did: not dotted with a myriad of high rise condos. It was really targeting residential, and defined several Central Business Districts.
Now, someone is proposing a modification of these building height limits, as they prevent businesses from coming and building at the Beaches - really? We have new businesses coming in daily. They move into existing space, and convert it to their needs. Not to mention, ahem: we have limited vacant land at any of the beaches! AND, parking is already tight, so any new projects, or modifications, will have to address parking issues.
Recent additions include:
- Atlantic Beach: M Shack Restaurant & Royal Palm Villlage Wine, Boom Shaka Laka Food Shack (all existing construction)
- Neptune Beach: Mario's Italian, Smashburger, Publix, Hurricane's Wings, Publix, TCBY (all new construction except for Mario's)
- Jacksonville Beach: 33 (apparel store), Sway (restaurant/bar)
Additionally, in the works are a Denny's and The Metro Diner, both of which are moving into existing spaces.
All of the buildings these businesses moved into are currently conforming to the building height limits, so it was not an issue to them.
I'm in support of the voting population. Why can't we work with what we have, rather than go against the voting public? Or, how about proposing a variance for a specific project, rather than ANOTHER building height limit vote?
You can read the full article here.