Construction downtown causing growing pains

by: Erica Bennett Updated:


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - It's been said the backbone of a city is its downtown.

Well, the River City is trying to prove that. Everywhere you look, there's construction.

"I think it's great for businesses to be opening up, for renovations to be going on," Claudia Guillen said.

The DuPont Center is one of the latest projects. Crews are working around the clock to renovate the old library to house local nonprofits.

Terry Lorince, executive director of Downtown Vision, Inc. is excited about the growth. "after years of working on this product, having the recession come in.

It's the perfect time and all the pieces are falling together downtown," she explained.  The price of progress isn't cheap.

Detours are frequent and noise is a big problem for some. "Sometimes the cranes are a little noisy, but we need to hear from folks, in particular the residents if it's an issue," Lorince continued.

The Landing, shipyards, and river walk on the Southbank are either undergoing overhauls or have designs on upgrades. Lorince believes if you get people excited about downtown, the whole city wins.

"We want more people to come downtown. to live downtown. To work downtown.  And know what a great place downtown Jacksonville is," she said.

On a long-term scale, Downtown Vision, Inc. would like to put Jacksonville in position to attract major events like Wrestle Mania and maybe even the Super Bowl.