SIGN OF THE TIMES: Demolition paves way for Whole Foods anchored $250 million-dollar project

SIGN OF THE TIMES: Demolition paves way for Whole Foods anchored $250 million-dollar project

The iconic black-and-white Florida Times-Union building at 1 Riverside Avenue may have been demolished on May 3, but for many in Jacksonville, the memories associated with the building will linger on. After all, 55 years of local news production isn’t easily erased.

From the rubble, progress is planned in the form of the One Riverside project, part of a larger plan to develop the riverfront. One Riverside is being built in two phases on 18.8 acres of riverfront property that served as the Times-Union’s home until April 2019 when the newspaper relocated its offices to downtown’s Wells Fargo Center.

Plans include a mixed-use project with retail, office, restaurant and apartments which would be developed concurrent with the daylighting and restoration of McCoy’s Creek.

Phase 1 of the $250 million project includes the Whole Foods Market plus 270 multi‐family apartments, a riverfront restaurant and retail space and structured parking, an investment of $182 million. Phase 2 plans call for an additional 115 multi‐family units, at least two riverfront or McCoys Creek-front restaurants, 15,000 square feet of retail space and a potential marina.

Fuqua Development affiliate, Fuqua BCDC Obe Riverside Project Owner, paid $25 million to buy the site from 1 Riverside Property LLC in a sale recorded Feb. 10, 2022, Duval County property and court records show. 1 Riverside Property LLC is owned by the Morris family of Augusta, Ga., which owned the Times-Union from 1983 until October 2017 when GateHouse Media assumed ownership. The newspaper currently is part of Gannett, which merged with GateHouse in November 2019.

Daylighting and restoration of McCoy’s Creek under the property at 1 Riverside Avenue and replacing the existing ditch with about 4,000 feet of open, soft-bottom channel and shoreline are included in Groundwork Jacksonville’s Phase 2 McCoys Creek restoration plan. Groundwork, an environmental trust, said the restored creek inlet, from the mouth of the St. Johns River to Myrtle Street, will increase water flow, allow fish passage and promote natural habitat for fish, plants and wildlife.

By Karen Rieley
Resident Community News

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