New Hendricks crosswalk brings safety to coffee café patrons

New Hendricks crosswalk brings safety to coffee café patrons
Workmen installed a new pedestrian crosswalk on Hendricks Avenue just across from Turner Plumbing and Bold Bean Coffee House.

Pedestrians hoping to patronize Bold Bean Coffee Roasters and other neighboring businesses on Hendricks Avenue north of Atlantic Boulevard will soon be able to cross the busy San Marco thoroughfare more safely. In October, the Florida Department of Transportation installed a mid-block crosswalk near the entrance of the popular coffee house.

Wheelchair accessible ramps have been constructed and signs with flashing beacons have been installed in the busy segment alongside Southside Baptist Church. The Jacksonville Electric Authority provided electrical service to the devices, while FDOT took care of striping the crosswalk across Hendricks and completing the concrete restoration work on the east side of the street, according to FDOT Community Outreach Specialist Sara Pleasants. Last summer, Pleasants estimated the cost of the crosswalk to be $53,160.

When he first learned about the crosswalk last summer, Zack Burnett, a managing partner at Bold Bean Coffee Roasters, said the news was exciting. “We believe it will increase the walkability, safety and success of San Marco as a whole,” he said. “The crosswalk will improve the connectivity between all of the business in our mid-block area to all of the other businesses and residential areas in the Hendricks/Landon/San Marco triangle,” he told The Resident.

When Bold Bean first opened in October 2016, its owners had an arrangement with Southside Baptist Church so that its customers could use the church’s Hendricks Avenue parking lot across the street from the coffeehouse. However, under the advice of attorney Robert Harris of Harris Guidi Rosner P.A., next door to the coffee café, the church decided it was too much of a liability to allow Bold Bean customers to continue to park in its lot without the safety of a crosswalk nearby.

With the crosswalk in place, the church is now willing to allow Bold Bean employees to park in its lot, however it is not yet willing to allow Bold Bean customers the same privilege because it is still not clear on what the church’s liability would be, said Southside Baptist Senior Pastor Dr. Gary Webber. “We want to wait to get more information on the liability issue before we give the go ahead,” he said.

By Marcia Hodgson
Resident Community News

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