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Jax Daily Record Friday, Dec. 10, 202112:00 PM EST

University of North Florida takes control of 190 acres donated by A.C. Skinner family

The city was managing the vacant land through the Duval County Research and Development Authority.
by: Max Marbut Associate Editor

The University of North Florida announced Dec. 10 it received a donation of about 190 acres for campus expansion and use.

The A.C. Skinner family donated the land decades ago to the Duval County Research and Development Authority, an independent authority of the city of Jacksonville, which managed the land for the benefit of UNF. 

The authority is conveying the property to the UNF Foundation.

UNF said the property, comprising 11 vacant parcels, is valued at $21.5 million.

The University of North Florida campus grew by about 190 acres with the donation of land from the city and the family of A.C. Skinner.

“The University is extremely grateful and appreciative of this gift of land from both the Skinner family and the Duval County Research and Development Authority that will benefit our community and students for generations to come,” UNF interim President Pamela Chally said in a news release.

“This donation represents a strategic investment in UNF’s future that will allow the University to continue to expand our footprint within Jacksonville and provide additional academic resources and amenities to the community,” she said.

The parcels form a portion of the First Coast Technology Park, fronting on First Coast Tech Parkway or Kernan Boulevard north of Butler Boulevard.

Potential uses include academic support and enrichment, research, athletics, faculty and student life, residential, maintenance and auxiliary facilities, the release said.

“The University has such a significant impact on our regional economy and quality of life, and we are so pleased to be a part of UNF’s continued growth,” authority board Chair Bruce Taylor said in the release.

The Skinner family has a history of supporting the university. The family gave UNF the 500 acres that form the original campus.

In 2013, UNF dedicated two buildings that became Skinner-Jones Hall in honor of Jacksonville landowners and developers Arthur Chester Skinner Jr., Charles Brightman Skinner and Mary Virginia Skinner-Jones.

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