Florida Blue to start work on Brooklyn parking garage

Insurer applies for a permit to construct the foundation for the structure at 800 Forest St.; work is expected to begin Jan. 9 and be completed by Sept. 9.

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Jacksonville-based Florida Blue applied to the city to construct the foundation of its planned Brooklyn parking garage at 800 Forest St. at a cost of $862,000.

Codes-ABC Inc. is the permitting consultant.

The application shows the foundation for a four-level precast concrete parking garage.

On Nov. 14, the Downtown Development Review Board approved the design of the proposed 869-space, $22.5 million structure. 

Construction of the parking garage is expected to begin by Jan. 9 and be completed by Sept. 9, according to a document filed with the board.

The Florida Blue garage also has 60-foot-deep retail bays, but they will not be built-out at the start.

In agreement with the city, Florida Blue will make parking available to the public after 6 p.m. weeknights and all day on weekends.

The city will transfer ownership of the $3.17 million Forest Street property to Florida Blue at no cost by Dec. 31, and the insurer will receive a $3.5 million completion grant to build the garage.

Florida Blue now uses a 4½-acre riverfront surface lot along Riverside Avenue that it will sell in the first quarter to Fidelity National Information Services Inc. for construction of a $145 million headquarters.

The parking garage will serve Guidewell Inc., the parent company of Florida Blue, at its 532 Riverside Ave. tower.

Guidewell announced it will add 750 jobs at the Riverside offices, comprising 500 contract and 250 full-time positions. It will increase the workforce there to 1,750.