- August 16, 2021
A co-developer of the proposed One Riverside project raised the possibility Oct. 18 that Publix Super Markets Inc. might lease space at the Brooklyn apartment and retail project.
The comments came at a Downtown Development Review Board workshop.
City Assistant General Counsel Susan Grandin asked Katherine Mosley, a partner with One Riverside housing developer TriBridge Residential, about parking enforcement and traffic patterns for the proposed garage to serve grocery store customers and apartment residents.
“As you’re going up the ramp, you’ll look at the roof of Publix, basically, right?” Grandin said.
Downtown Investment Authority Operations Manager Guy Parola responded, “You’ll look at the roof of something.”
“Well, sorry. I just was hoping it was a Publix,” Grandin said.
“I don’t think you’ll be disappointed,” Mosley said.
Grandin is a lawyer in the Office of General Counsel’s land use and administrative law department and attends DDRB meetings as an adviser to the board.
One Riverside developer Jeff Fuqua has not said what chain will fill the space planned for the grocery store. The name of the operator is not disclosed on the site plan or renderings.
Fuqua and Publix Community Relations Manager Chris Norberg did not confirm nor deny that Publix will lease space at One Riverside.
“Unfortunately, we are unable to comment on future sites that do not have fully executed leases,” Norberg said by email.
Fuqua said only that “this does not show a Publix store.”
The grocery store could be 23,256 to 38,750 square feet, plans show.
One Riverside is the development planned for the former Florida Times-Union property along the St. Johns River in Brooklyn on the Downtown Northbank.
It includes apartments, retail and a restaurant.
Fuqua is familiar with the grocery market in the area.
He was president of Sembler Company when it developed the Riverside Publix, which opened in 2002 at 2033 Riverside Ave., about 2 miles west of One Riverside at 1 Riverside Ave.
He also partnered with Jacksonville-based Regency Centers Corp. to develop the Brooklyn Station on Riverside center anchored by The Fresh Market, across the street from the One Riverside property.
Fuqua and TriBridge are based in Atlanta.
The One Riverside designs
The workshop offered a look at renderings and architecture for the first phase of the project, which includes the grocery store.
Fuqua Development LLC is the lead developer for the estimated $182.2 million project. Fuqua plans to buy the property from the Morris family, based in Augusta, Georgia, and demolish the vacant T-U office and production buildings.
Fuqua proposes developing the west portion of the property, about 13.42 acres, in two phases.
The first phase includes a grocer, retail and restaurant uses and 271 apartments in two multifamily buildings.
According to the site plan dated Oct. 11, the project’s first phase has more than 45,000 square feet of retail space, including the grocery, a seven-level parking garage with 502 spaces and additional surface parking.
The plan requires the city Department of Public Works to reroute and McCoys Creek, which runs under the site, and add a public park to the east side of the property.
Mosley said Oct. 18 that TriBridge likely will develop the residential buildings planned in the project’s second phase.
Fuqua told the DIA his company does not expect second-phase construction to start until at least 2025 after the city completes the restoration and relocation of McCoys Creek.
The second phase comprises two mixed-use buildings along the restored creek with about 15,000 square feet of retail space; a riverfront restaurant; a multifamily residential building with 125 units; and parking.
Mosley’s presentation focused on the first-phase residential and parking garage renderings.
The images show large wood-style supports for residential balcony overhangs as a prominent feature in the design.
The renderings also detail what Mosley called a promenade between the two residential structures with stairs and an ADA-accessible elevator leading down to the Northbank Riverwalk.
Mosley spent much of the workshop addressing board member concerns from the DDRB’s Oct. 14 meeting that approved the conceptual master site plan in a 7-1 vote.
Board members overall were positive with the architecture shown Oct. 18.
Brenna Durden and Matt Brockelman met in person and Christian Harden and Jeff Davisson attended virtually.
The remaining five members did not attend, but Joseph Loretta and Davisson sent comments on the design via email.
Davisson said that the building images have a “pleasing flair on the waterfront” and he liked the stairway design to the Riverwalk.
Harden said the designs “look nice” and are different than anything DDRB has seen before.
Some board members said they want to see a more “urban feel” on the site and some were concerned about the amount of surface parking along Riverside Avenue.
Harden said there needed to be a safer way for pedestrians to enter the site from Riverside Avenue and cross the Leila Street intersection.
“We certainly want to make this as safe as possible,” Mosley said.
“Again, this is where we’ll have the 8-foot-wide sidewalks, along with the landscaping buffer, and really are trying to limit how many vehicular crossings a pedestrian has and have it down to just one drive aisle.”
Loretta said he wants to see a different traffic pattern and flow through the site, and several board members did not like how the Leila and May streets extensions dead end into One Riverside.
Davisson said he wants to see more detail in the final site plan on how pedestrians will access the public park.
Loretta said in his email he wants the developer to illustrate how the boardwalk will work over McCoys Creek.
One Riverside renderings show TriBridge plans an amenity building or co-working space that will block two of the four garage entrances from the view of pedestrians and motorists along Riverside Avenue.
The garage also features a “living wall” of plants outside the first several floors to screen the garage from the street and site drives.
The project also features a restaurant that Mosley said will be two stories.
In September, the DIA board required Fuqua to add a riverfront restaurant to One Riverside’s first phase before it would approve $31.59 million in project incentives.
The deal, which comprises a $28,419,169 property tax refund and $3,174,971 in completion grants and fee credits, will need City Council approval.
The board did not take any votes or make any decisions at the workshop.
Parola said Fuqua’s team likely will return for final site plan approval at the DDRB’s November meeting.
The renderings and site plans show Prosser Inc. is the civil engineering consultant and Orlando-based architectural and planning firm Dwell Design Studio is working on the project.
Editor Karen Brune Mathis contributed to this report.