More restaurants planned for Brooklyn area

More restaurants planned for Brooklyn area
East elevation shown between Riverside Avenue and Leila Street, property immediately adjacent to Burrito Gallery Brooklyn.

City of Jacksonville property, known as the Jug Handle, in Brooklyn is being considered for commercial/retail development. The Jug Handle is used as a storm water retention basin and includes a turnoff for motorists exiting the Acosta Bridge and desiring to enter the Florida Times-Union property across Riverside Avenue.

In July 2017, the Downtown Investment Authority (DIA) discussed a land-swap of that parcel on the corner of Riverside Avenue and Leila Street with three privately-owned parcels on Magnolia Street. Ferber Company, a Ponte Vedra developer, had offered to design and construct a public parking lot on the private parcels. The DIA, through the Office of Public Parking, would operate and maintain the public parking lot.

The Jug Handle parcel was originally part of a 2016 redevelopment plan for a pharmacy/drugstore, but the end user rejected the location.

At a Jan. 18, 2018 meeting, the Downtown Development Review Board (DDRB) offered conceptual approval of Ferber Company’s plan to develop three restaurants and two commercial spaces, while noting only one deviation among the 11 design guidelines: to allow the reduction of off-street parking from 99 spaces to 90 spaces.

The aforementioned parking lot adjacent to the development would satisfy the requirement, as well as provide additional parking for existing retail and commercial activity in Brooklyn Station. The plans were in compliance with nine of the remaining 10 guidelines, and the tenth – waterfront development design – was not applicable.

The applicant also requested a special exception for monument signage, which will be reviewed by the DDRB at final approval presentation. There are currently three monument signs at the adjacent Brooklyn Station project.

The 12,500-square-foot multi-tenant building will front Riverside Avenue. The architect will be FWH Architects, and the engineer and landscape architect is England-Thims & Miller. The project is estimated to begin in fourth quarter 2018 with completion in July 2019.

The proposed tenants will be a mix of national, regional and experienced local businesses consistent with the existing Brooklyn Station tenant mix, according to the proposal presented to the DDRB. The height of the proposed building will not exceed 30 feet and will be consistent with the retailers at Brooklyn Station.

Two of the proposed restaurant spaces would seat up to 137, while the third would seat up to 241. The two commercial spaces are each 1,900 square feet. There are currently five eateries in Brooklyn Station, including First Watch, BurgerFi, Zoe’s Kitchen, The Hyppo, and Burrito Gallery. Grabbagreen closed its doors last month after just 10 months in business.

By Kate A. Hallock
Resident Community News

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