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The announcement from Florida East Coast Industries of a new private passenger rail service is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. In an article that started as the mere musings of a retired railroad consultant, MetroJacksonville.com blows the lid off huge changes in the Sunshine State. This is bigger than Jacksonville, bigger than 'All Aboard Florida' - this is just the start of an epic change in thinking as Florida goes rail. Article
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In 2005, MetroJacksonville.com pointed out to the JEDC and Peyton Administration why the Main Street Pocket Park would struggle to succeed if built. We were ignored and $800,000 later, the chickens came home to roost as our warnings became reality. Now that we're destined to repeat the same mistakes with Hemming Plaza, we'd like to take a step back and examine ten principles needed for a successful urban public space, according to Project for Public Spaces. If the council's committee can embrace and plan from this set of principles, Hemming Plaza will be the centerplace of activity once again. Article
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#8 - Downtown 7-Eleven Design Revised & Approved It appears one of downtown's surface parking lots will soon disappear, only to be replaced with slurpees. On Feb. 2, 2012, the Downtown Development Review Board (DDRB) granted final design and signage approval for a 7-Eleven convenience store and gas station at 9 East Union Street.
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#11 - We Love Avondale,llc Attempts to Ruin Christmas Event A group of civic-minded people gathered together to host a charity event to benefit Nemours Children's Hospital in conjunction with Christmas in Avondale. Intuition Ale Works, Jax Truckies, Burrito Gallery and On The Fly food truck teamed up with Mellow Mushroom to host this charity event on the future Mellow Mushroom Avondale site. All of these locally-owned businesses routinely participate in events which raise money for charitable causes. The event featured a silent disco that was immensely popular with children, free merchandise to participants and the sale of food and beverages whose proceeds were donated to Nemours.
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#12 - The Premature Destruction of Downtown Jacksonville Many have openly advocated the immediate demolition of the Duval County Courthouse and the former city hall buildings along East Bay Street. MetroJacksonville.com explains why this idea is just a repeat of the failed strategies that have torn Downtown Jacksonville apart over the last 60 years.