Incentives would provide $15.45 million from city to resurrect Rise Doro

The proposed deal comes four months after the Downtown apartment complex was destroyed by fire.

  • By Ric Anderson
  • | 4:52 p.m. June 7, 2024
  • | 4 Free Articles Remaining!
On Feb. 28, most of the wood-framed apartment structure is removed at the fire-destroyed Rise Doro apartments. The concrete parking structure remains intact.
On Feb. 28, most of the wood-framed apartment structure is removed at the fire-destroyed Rise Doro apartments. The concrete parking structure remains intact.
Photo by Monty Zickuhr
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The city of Jacksonville would provide $15.45 million to resurrect the Rise Doro apartment building in the Sports and Entertainment District under a new incentives package set to go before a Downtown Investment Authority committee.

The incentives, detailed in Resolution 2024-0614, are among agenda items for the June 14 meeting of the Downtown Investment Authority Strategic Implementation Committee. 

The resolution comes about four months after a fire destroyed the wood-framed portions of the structure at 960 E. Adams St. just days before it was scheduled to be inhabited.

Under the proposed agreement with project developer Rise: A Real Estate Co., the city would provide a 20-year, 75% Recapture Enhanced Value grant of $11.45 million, a $3 million workforce housing completion grant and a $1 million emergency rapid response grant for the $79.1 million project.

A REV grant is a refund on ad valorem tax revenue generated by a new development. The grant for Rise would come through the DIA Multifamily Housing REV Grant program.

According to the resolution, the rebuilt project would include 247 residential units and 7,400 square feet of retail space. Rise intends to incorporate 85 units of workforce housing, where before all the units were to be leased at market rate. 

Demolition progresses on the Rise Doro apartments Feb. 7 after a fire destroyed the structure.
Photo by Monty Zickuhr

The project also will include a seven-story parking garage with 300 spaces, rooftop swimming pool and fitness center, a DIA term sheet says. Of the retail space, 4,700 square feet will be on the ground floor and will be open to the public during normal business hours. 

The cost of the original project, including the concrete pedestal and parking garage, was $65 million. In 2020, the DIA board approved a 15-year, 65% Recapture Enhanced Value Grant of $5.75 million for the project.

A staff report on the resurrected project says the 360,000-square-foot structure will include 15 954-square-foot one-bedroom town home units, 173 one-bedroom units of 625-750 square feet and 61 two-bedroom units of 1,025 square feet. The 85 workforce units will be restricted to tenants making up to 120% of the area median income. 

“These rent levels are approximately equal to market rent in Jacksonville today, but will ensure affordability through a recorded Land Use Restrictive Agreement (LURA) to maintain these rent levels for a period of 30 years,” the staff report states.

Rise plans to retain the existing concrete portions of the building, which were determined sound by engineering inspectors.

The resolution attributed the higher cost of the new project to increases in construction costs.

Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department crews battle a fire Jan. 28 at the nearly completed Rise Doro apartments at 960 E. Adams St. south of VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in the Downtown Sports District.
Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department

Rise Doro leased apartments to eight people and had scheduled move-ins when a fire started in the building Jan. 28. The fire burned for several days, leaving much of the wood-framed portions of the building either destroyed by flames or damaged by thousands of gallons of water being poured on the fire. 

City officials ordered the wood-framed portions to be demolished to protect surrounding businesses from damage in case of a collapse.

The cause of the fire has not been determined. 

Mayor Donna Deegan called the blaze “heartbreaking” and said it dealt a setback to efforts to revitalize Downtown Jacksonville. City leaders were hopeful the project’s completion would spur further development in the Sports and Entertainment District and beyond.

Shortly after the fire, Rise president Greg Blais said the company intended to rebuild the Doro on the site. 

The project draws its name from the George Doro Fixture Co., which previously stood at the site of the 1.63-acre site of the building.

The DIA Strategic Implementation Committee meeting is scheduled to begin at 2 p.m. June 14 at the Main Library at 303 N. Laura St. Downtown. 



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