Different developer says city should consider other offers for Berkman II

Jacksonville City Council Finance Committee listens to concerns, takes no action


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Plans to turn the never-completed Berkman II high-rise structure into a hotel and amusement park are beginning to make their way through City Council.

The city is considering a $36 million deal with the investor to bring that about. The city would not pay any money until certain benchmarks are met. During a City Council Finance Committee meeting Wednesday, another developer spoke up. Developer Greg Esterman, who owns several condos at the Berkman site, said the city should consider other offers.

"There is a lot of concern in the building from residents. For a number of years, everybody has expected it to be a residential development next to us," Esterman said. "I think this is just a golden opportunity that still could be achieved financially if we've got the kind of assistance that has been talked about. It’s a great time for downtown."

The Finance Committee listened to his concerns, but took no action Wednesday and deferred discussion for two weeks. 

About the Author: