San Marco is slated for an English-themed traditional neighborhood pub that serves beer and wine, pending zoning, but with limited food options.
The vacant Layla’s of San Marco site near Atlantic and San Marco boulevards is proposed for remodeling into The Posting House LLC.
The Posting House LLC applied to the city for zoning approvals to operate a beer and wine pub, without liquor sales, at 2018 Hendricks Ave.
Layla’s was a full-service Mediterranean restaurant and hookah bar at 2016 Hendricks Ave. with a full liquor license and a seating capacity of 197.
It was damaged by fire in July 2012 and closed. It reopened in 2013 as Mezze Mediterranean Grill but closed within two years.
The landlord is dividing the almost 3,500-square-foot building into two units, with The Posting House taking the southern half and the northern half labeled as vacant retail space.
The city is reviewing construction of a firewall to separate the tenant spaces into 2016 and 2018 Hendricks Ave. The building was developed in 1945.
Joyce Kimball is listed as the property owner and Michael Saylor of Black Dog Planning Inc. is the applicant.
Jude Green, a San Marco resident, is the proprietor of Posting House LLC, which was registered with the state in August. Saylor said the lease hasn’t been signed but Green would like to open in early 2019, re-energizing a building that has been vacant for several years.
The zoning applications describe the English theme and said it “will offer a contrasting low-key activity to the higher-traffic food and beverage venues presently operating in The Square,” as the historic shopping district is called.
The Posting House said there is no provision for a full kitchen in the space. The pub will include 1,600 square feet of space with seating up to 99 inside and at the bar, although Saylor said it would be 50 to 99.
A covered portico on the Hendricks Avenue side of the building will be used for outdoor seating. That seating is part of the leased area and not part of the sidewalk.
Saylor said the building will feature a new facade to create two entrances with a shared covered portico that will provide covered open-air seating.
No tenant has committed to the other half of the building, he said.
The application states no amplified outdoor music is proposed, and any inside music will be limited to pre-recorded electronic music or live acoustic performances.
An administrative parking deviation is requested to reduce the off-street parking requirement from 26 spots to none. The Posting House LLC application says the landlord owns and controls 20 shared parking spaces on-site and there are 12 on-street parking spaces in front of the proposed business.
The Posting House LLC seeks a waiver of the minimum distance requirements from a church for a liquor license, an exception to sell beer and wine and the administrative deviation for parking.
Saylor said the zoning requests might be considered in October by the Jacksonville Planning Commission.
He said operating hours haven’t been decided and might be part of the exception approval.