View from the lions looking south toward the gazebo. This space once was an intersetcion.
Renovations of Balis Park are complete. This transformation happened surprisingly fast by city infrastructure improvement standards. It took only 1.5 years from idea conception to completion! The original idea was spawned by the realization that the roundabout north of the square would become clogged with traffic at the intersection of San Marco and Atlantic Boulevard. This dilemma allowed an opportunity to address the other problems in San Marco Square, specifically an automobile dominant design in a pedestrian area. Eliminating the intersection and creating a central park with one way traffic improved flow and increased parking and pedestrian safety, and created much need green space.
Since the completion of the park, the economy in San Marco, as in most of Jacksonville, has seen a boon. No more empty storefronts, better flow for traffic, increased parking, bike racks, and a fun gathering space for all to enjoy. We are proud to have been a part of this community project and look forward to enjoying the space in the beauty of Jacksonville’s springtime.
New green space encourages play, rest, and event space. It also provides better drainage than the former traffic lane.
Sometimes we say too much. Simplicity rules.
We all understand this, right?
In case you were planning to take your wheelchair or baby stroller on the escalator.
On the metro, don’t do this:
And my favorite, restroom doors in a Barcelona tapas bar.
A person in a wheelchair waits at a bus stop- no sidewalk, no platform, no cover, on an incline.
This person has two choices- manually wheel through the sometimes muddy or wet grass, or go into the street- to get to the bus stop. How is this acceptable?
Regardless of how we arrived at this situation, the mobility plan offers a path to change it. The plan funds street improvements and transportation alternatives for all citizens, not just car drivers.
Councilmember Clark has introduced a bill to put a moratorium on the Mobility Plan fees for three years. Currently, the Mobility Plan is the only dedicated funding mechansim to make these types of improvements.
It’s a simple choice. Do we want high quality developments, which can lead to improved quality of life in Jax? Or do we just want any development “to get hammers swinging and concrete pouring”?
If you vote for quality, contact your councilperson and tell him/her to vote NO to the Moratorium on the Mobility Plan.
Balis Park expansion. Rendering by DCOOP
It’s official. The San Marco Square traffic and pedestrian improvement project is happening! This expansion of Balis Park will provide better traffic flow, more parking spaces, safer pedestrian pathways, and a community gathering green space. This is your chance to get a personalized brick paver, a bike rack, a tree, or a park bench. Get a paver for yourself and your family, in honor of or in memory of a loved one, or as a Christmas gift.
We always say Jax needs to capitalize on its river more. Here are a few creative ideas.
A winding pedestrian bridge. This one leads to a minimalist gathering space. What interesting floating space could ours lead to?
Or how about a floating coffee shop- Bold Bean in the river?
Ermagherd, a floating coffee shop in Graz, Austria.
Or even a five star hotel?
This completely self sustaining hotel is in Norway, hence the snowflake design. What would our design be?
Perhaps a movie theater would bring people downtown to the river.
Of course, the obvious- offices.
Or a museum of any kind-
A water playground could be fun for everyone.
Or, gross, a floating cemetery! It would be unique!