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Jax Daily Record Monday, Mar. 12, 201812:52 PM EST

DDRB to examine Lofts at Jefferson Station apartments, new sign for Greyhound

Projects are in the LaVilla neighborhood near Downtown.
by: David Cawton Associate Editor

The Downtown Development Review Board will review the first conceptual designs for a pair of LaVilla projects at its meeting today. 

Vestcor Inc. will provide its first look at the Lofts at Jefferson Station apartments, while the Jacksonville Transportation Authority will seek approval for signage. 

Vestcor plans to build the five-story Lofts at Jefferson Station on 1.77 acres between Lee and North Jefferson streets and West Bay and Forsyth streets in LaVilla. 

Lofts at Jefferson Station will comprise 133 one- and two-bedroom units, a leasing office, 150 surface and structured parking spaces, a fitness center and other amenities. 

A description of the project says the fitness center will be on the second floor and an amenity area will be on the fifth floor overlooking Downtown. 

The company seeks a deviation from the Downtown overlay zoning code to allow it to build above 60 feet. The proposed building is 64 feet.  

The project also may need deviations regarding streetscape and parking standards, although those likely will be determined when Vestcor returns to the DDRB for final design approval. 

The Downtown Investment Authority approved resolutions Oct. 31 tied to financial incentives and development rights for the estimated $28 million project. 

The DIA approved a $400,000 loan from the Downtown Economic Development Fund along with a Recapture Enhanced Value grant for 75 percent of the ad valorem tax increment generated over 15 years.

The REV grant, funded through the Northwest Tax Increment Finance District Trust Fund, would not exceed $2.98 million over that time.

Of the 133 apartments, 80 would be considered affordable housing and reserved for people with incomes below 60 percent of Jacksonville’s area median income, capped at $51,000 for a family of four.

At its Nov. 29 board meeting, the Jacksonville Housing Finance Authority approved a $225,000 low-interest loan to be paid over 15 years to offset costs for those 80 units.

The other 53 apartments would be workforce housing for those with incomes below 140 percent of the area median income. That cap is $91,000 for a family of four.

This is the third LaVilla neighborhood project for Vestcor. 

The Lofts at LaVilla opened in December and the nearby 118-unit Lofts at Monroe project is under construction. 

Greyhound sign for the new Intercity Bus Terminal.

Greyhound Bus Signs

The Jacksonville Transportation Authority is seeking DDRB approval to build signage for its Intercity Bus Terminal for Greyhound.

The station is part of the larger Jacksonville Regional Transportation Center that JTA is building in LaVilla.

The authority needs approval to build a 26-foot-tall, double-faced, free-standing sign at the rear of the bus terminal, which faces Houston street.

The sign will feature a mix of steel, aluminum and clear plastic with printed graphics and LED lights. It will have an 11-foot-2-inch long silver Greyhound dog logo atop an 8-inch diameter pole. Below the greyhound will be an 11-foot-6-inch tall sign with the Greyhound wordmark.

When completed, the Intercity Bus Terminal will include an 8,000-square-foot bus transfer facility with 13 bays and 35,000 square feet of interior office space. 

The DDRB meets 2 p.m. Thursday in a third-floor conference room at City Hall at 117 W. Duval St.

The Greyhound sign will feature a mix of steel, aluminum and clear plastic with printed graphics and LED lights.


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