5/11/2015 – Community Planning Advisory Council meeting highlights by Laurel Conderman
Reports from various city government areas:
Presentation by Ron Tittle, FDOT –
Goal of FDOT is to have fatality and congestion free transportation.
Cost of constructions projects for District 2 (18 county area that includes Duval, Clay, St. Johns, and Nassau) 2015 – $400 million; 2016 – $800 million.
Access to detail about projects is available at NFLRoads.com – click on the highway icon to see the details of the project (example overland bridge I-95). Mr. Tittle also said that he often posts his FDOT presentations on YOUTUBE and can access this information by entering construction location (example Wonderful Expressway).
FDOT projects currently underway are adding express lanes from I-295 to JTB which is on schedule for completion in 2019 and adding express lanes on I-295 in Mandarin. Express lane tolls will use SUN Pass which could run from $ .50 to $10.00 depending on time of day, express lane use. Future projects in UPCA area – I-95 – JTB flyover; continuing replacement of drainage along Wonderwood; improvements to intersections at Atlantic and University as well as at Beach and University; express lanes from 9B to JTB. Bike and pedestrian safety are kept in mind during planning road projects. Medians serve as a safety feature of separating traffic as it is safer for cars to proceed past the median and make a U-turn than make a left turn across an intersection. Mr. Tittle noted some cameras at intersections are not “red-light cameras” but for the Intelligent Transportation System (ITS) to trigger traffic light changes.
Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office –Detective Nader provided year to date crime update that crime is down in Zone 2 compared to this time 2014.
Code Enforcement – Elaine reported the Department is continuing to sweep neighborhoods to identify areas in need of code enforcement. Next week area the Department will be looking at the Woodmere area with University Park and Charter Point scheduled for review in June.
North Florida Transportation Planning Organization (TPO) – Handout provided which notes years of planning stages for various road improvements.
Office of Economic Development (Operation Dolphin/Renew Arlington) – Karen Nasrallah reported that a consultant has been hired and they are proceeding with preparation of the Renew Arlington paperwork to submit to the City Council mid-June. These plans will incorporate the many community plans that have been submitted over the past years for community redevelopment with focus on transportation, housing and safety. The only housing area they will review is the 950 units on Justina Road. Lohman Company is currently in the processing of purchasing 450 of these units. Lohman Company has expanded its funeral services company into real estate ownership. Next Office of Economic Development meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, 5/13/2015 – 9 to 10 a.m. at Ed Ball Building, 1st floor training room and open to the public.
Recreation and Park – Summer Guide to Jax Parks was distributed. The guide notes that Blue Cypress hours through June 5th are 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday; from June 6th through August 20th hours will be 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. Phone number is 745-5466. The swimming pool at Blue Cypress was not slated to be repaired as estimated cost of repairs was $2.1M. It was noted the number of children coming to the center is slow to return to the numbers in the past.
Jacksonville Transportation Authority – JTA plans include changing Kernan to 6 lanes from Atlantic to Matthew Unger; then 4 lanes to McCormick: Girvin to 5 lanes from Atlantic to Ashley Melisse; then 3 lanes to Wonderwood. JTA does already have the property needed for these road changes. Improvements to San Pablo are #13 of a listing of 15 for road improvements. There was concern over the need to make this a higher priority.
CPAC Chair report – Mike Anania reported the CPAC Chair Meeting resulted in the request for a voting member seat on the planning commission. This seat would be for a one-year term that would rotate among the 6 CPAC Chairs.
Land Use and Zoning (LUZ)/Government Affairs – Mike Anania presented a number of zoning change requests.
#1 – 1140 Mccormick Road – Gate gas and food store – Requested:
1 – Exit from the Gate Station from light to make right turn only to the East
2 – Open 24 hours (this would be a change from current hours of 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. store hours)
3 – Extension of security fence around retention pond at that site
Pros – 2 clerks at all time providing greater security for the area. Would not schedule dumpster pickup, deliveries, change in lighting, and have outside speakers at the pumps.
Cons – Noise and safety factors in this mainly residential area.
CPAC – Recommended approval with some “no” votes.
#2 – Islamic Center on Art Museum Drive – requesting addition of bakery, food trucks at location
CPAC – Recommended approval with conditions.
#3 – 4522 Bluff Avenue – Request one-chair hair salon; has adequate parking, no signage
CPAC – Recommended approval.
#4 – Hotel in Mayport area – change to 93 unit hotel and height change from 60 to 75’
CPAC – Recommended denial as building height inconsistent with area.
#5 – Billards Hall on University – request to allow alcohol sale and full restaurant service which would require a
waiver as closer than 1500 feet to church.
CPAC – Recommended denial due to impact on neighborhood.
#6 – Rezoning of Southside Oaks (location on Atlantic near Century 21) – change to 37 ½ foot lots for single family 900 square foot homes. Over the past years, the minimum lot sizes have gone from 60’, to 50’ and then to 40’. We were reminded that there is a 35’ lot size in the historic districts.
CPAC – Recommended denial.
CPAC Member information provided:
While vacationing suggestion to ask police for property watch to check on your home in your absence. Call the police substation 904-726-5100 – Zone 2 substation for property watch. Don’t overshare on social media to advertise that you will be away from your home.
Joyce Morgan – Be sure to vote – early voting open until 5/17 with 5/19 Election Day. Seek out additional neighborhood organizations to join CPAC.