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Jax Daily Record Friday, Oct. 20, 201707:00 AM EST

Jackson Commons seeks permits; Amazon HQ speculation list

Aldi to open three area stores in 2018

Orlando-based developer Tramell Webb Partners Inc. applied to the city to build the proposed 66-unit Jackson Commons student housing development at 3607 University Blvd. N. at a construction cost of $4.5 million.

No contractor is listed.

The six three-story buildings will comprise two-, three- and four-bedroom townhouses and flats for Jacksonville University staff and students. There also will be a pool.

The 3.3-acre site was the site of the now-demolished Nero’s restaurant, the Blue Boy Sandwich Shop and a vacant lot.

A proposed 4,125-square-foot retail building would be separately permitted. The site is a mile north of the JU campus.

Another Amazon HQ list; again, no Jacksonville

Another consulting firm analyzed the likely lead contenders for’s second North American headquarters and, again, Jacksonville is not on it.

Anderson Economic Group LLC of East Lansing, Michigan, offered its advice to Michigan business and civic leaders about a bid for the project for Detroit.

The bids were due Thursday. Mayor Lenny Curry’s office said Wednesday the city submitted a proposal but cited state law keeping economic-development deals secret in not releasing the details.

Anderson Economic Group analyzed 35 competing cities and their ability to fulfill Amazon’s criteria.

The metro areas analyzed have a population of more than a million people and an international airport with at least some nonstop flights to Seattle, New York, San Francisco and Washington, D.C., which are among “key preferences and decision drivers” in Amazon’s Request for Proposals.

Jacksonville does not offer nonstop flights to Seattle and San Francisco.

Anderson Economic Group determined the two strongest competitors are New York and Chicago.

Rounding out its top 10: Los Angeles, Boston, Atlanta, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia, Dallas, Salt Lake City and San Diego.

Anderson also contends that the strongest competitors could emerge from cities it called “Mid City Competitors” if their proposals are solid.

It singled out those competitors as Cleveland; San Antonio and Austin, Texas; Minneapolis-St. Paul; Raleigh, North Carolina; and Grand Rapids, Michigan.

As we reported, the nonprofit Brookings Institution also analyzed the project requirements and determined what it considers are the top contenders, which don’t include Jacksonville.

Anderson Economic Group ranked three Florida cities: Miami (21), Tampa (27) and Orlando (31).

As for Detroit? No. 32.

Food notes

  • Wendy’s applied for a demolition permit to take down its 3910 University Blvd. W. restaurant, which was built in 1973. Wen South LLC wants to replace it with a 2,433-square-foot restaurant at a cost of $650,000.
  • Juicy Seafood Restaurant could open at 1036 Dunn Ave. Nialvi LLC is the contractor for the pending $62,000 remodeling job.

Aldi to open three area stores in 2018

Aldi said it will open three discount grocery stores next year in Northeast Florida, including one at 10950 San Jose Blvd. in San Jose Plaza.

That one will be developed in a former fitness center in a shopping plaza next to one where Trader Joe’s recently opened.

Matt Thon, Aldi Haines City division vice president, said it was too early to share details about a grand-opening date for the store.

Two other stores scheduled to open next year are at CB Square along Atlantic Boulevard in the Regency area and in Bolton Plaza along Blanding Boulevard in Orange Park.

That one will be the second Aldi store in Clay County.

Quest OK’d for Wal-Mart build-out

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. landed a permit to add a Quest Diagnostics laboratory-testing space in its Regency area Supercenter as part of a partnership announced in June.

The city issued a permit Wednesday for Elder-Jones Inc. of Bloomington, Minnesota, to renovate almost 700 square feet of space for Quest at a construction cost of $135,319.

The store is at 9890 Hutchinson Park Drive.

Quest Diagnostics and Wal-Mart Stores Inc. said June 26 they will launch a partnership with about 15 Wal-Mart stores in Florida and Texas by the end of 2017.

The co-branded sites will provide laboratory testing and could expand to include other basic health care services.

Steve Rusckowski, Quest Diagnostics chairman, president and CEO, said in the June news release that by providing laboratory testing and health care services where people also shop, “we will make it easier for Wal-Mart customers and their associates to get the quality diagnostic insights they need in convenient locations.”

George Riedl, senior vice president and president of Wal-Mart Health and Wellness, said the company was working to make its stores a one-stop shop for customers’ everyday health and wellness needs.

Quest already operates 11 locations in the city of Jacksonville. said the partnership signals Wal-Mart’s continued expansion into health care.

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