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Jax Daily Record Tuesday, Mar. 28, 201712:00 PM EST

JTA shuffling parking near convention center

by: Max Marbut Associate Editor

You can’t stand in the way of progress.

More than 400 people who work Downtown are discovering you can’t park in its way either.

Site preparation began in January for the intercity bus terminal that will become the new Greyhound Bus Lines center in LaVilla near the Prime Osborn Convention Center.

It’s being built on what used to be a parking lot owned by the Jacksonville Transportation Authority. About 250 of the 367 spaces on the lot were leased for monthly parking, including a block of spaces used by people who work at C2C Solutions at EverBank Center.

They’ve been moved to an adjacent lot, also owned by JTA.

Since the move was just across the street, it isn’t much disruption for the employees, said C2C spokeswoman Emilie Fennell.

“It’s not a big issue,” she said, and added that the employees can still park and then ride the Skyway from the convention center to Central Station, directly across Bay Street from EverBank.

People who park in two other JTA lots in LaVilla will have to move by May when construction of the Jacksonville Regional Transportation Center is scheduled to begin.

Those lots are managed by LAZ Parking, along with several other lots and garages Downtown.

The authority notified those 185 customers in February that they too will be moving, and it’s working with LAZ to relocate them to other sites, said JTA spokeswoman Leigh Ann Rassler.

One possibility is the Kings Avenue garage on the Southbank, which would allow customers to continue to use the Skyway to get to and from Downtown’s core.

Since the convention center parking is in peripheral lots, the monthly charge for parking is less than $30, compared to as much as $110 a month for a space in a garage in the core.

If displaced customers choose alternative parking in another facility managed by LAZ that has a higher monthly fee, they might have to pay more each month, said spokeswoman Amanda Glick.

“It is LAZ’s policy that we will not increase their monthly fee,” she said, but added rates are determined by lot and garage owners.

The $33 million transportation center will combine the Greyhound terminal, JTA fixed bus routes, a hub for the First Coast Flyer rapid bus transit system, facilities for Megabus service between Jacksonville and Orlando, the Uber ride-sharing service and offices for the authority.

It is scheduled to be completed in 2019.

Future phases — not yet funded — could include a terminal for commuter rail service and moving the Amtrak station from North Jacksonville to the convention center, formerly Union Terminal.

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