Construction continues on Southbank Riverwalk

Project will be complete as initially expected

By Heather Leigh - Reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - Construction is continuing on the Southbank Riverwalk now that the project is set to be complete as originally expected.

Workers are in the beginning stages near Friendship Fountain, and crews will work their way down to the Duval County School Board building.

"The Southbank Riverwalk is in terrible shape, has been in terrible shape for quite some time," Councilman Don Redman said.

He knows firsthand because he ended up in the hospital after falling off his bike and breaking his leg four years ago on the Riverwalk.

In 2010, the city passed a measure to tear down the decaying walkway and rebuild it, but construction didn't begin until this year.

"I feel like I've been left out of the loop as a district City Council member for the Southbank Riverwalk," Redman said.

He said a string of emails from a former member of the Duval County School District were sent to the director of Jacksonville's Public Works Department expressing concerns over parking and access to the Riverwalk.

"It appears from the paperwork that I got, received from Jim Robinson last week that it may have been just one individual on that worked for the School Board that thought there was a problem and didn't communicate that with the rest of the people he worked with," Redman said.

On Tuesday, the school district sent out a statement expressing its full support to rebuild the entire Riverwalk. The project is expected to be finished by the fall. So far, things are moving along.

Redman said things should move along pretty quickly, which is a stark contrast to what's happened so far.

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