Jacksonville homeowners say nearby construction is a nuisance, causing health issues

Complaints about loud and messy construction project on Northside of Jacksonville

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Only on Action News Jax, neighbors living along Cedar Bay Drive on the Northside tell us their quality of life is being driven down by a nearby industrial park construction project.

City leaders say the project should bring hundreds of jobs to Jacksonville.

Homeowners tell Action News Jax Ryan Nelson they’re asking the developer across the road to be a good neighbor.

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“They’re saying there’s no impact on us,” said Northside homeowner Ron Gerdick. “There’s a bunch of impacts!”

Gerdick tells Nelson he can hear the industrial development across the street at all hours of the day.

He says what used to be a natural sound barrier of trees and brush has been cut away due to the project.

“We were not informed of any of the construction that was going on,” he said. “We hear noise 12 hours, 14 hours, 16 hours a day!”

He isn’t alone.

Ley Flowers lives down the road from Gerdick and says she hears the noise all the time, too.

She says what used to a natural landscape behind her home is now dozens of acres of dirt. Flowers says the construction kicks up dirt and dust that ends up everywhere, from her pool to her lungs.

“I have COPD,” said Flowers. “And I’m on two asthmatic inhalers, and when they’re working back there in the back, and all that dust is flying, it’s really hard for me to breathe.”

Nelson took their concerns to District 2 Council Member Al Ferraro in a phone conversation.

He tells us he’s aware of the concerns surrounding the massive industrial development, including dust, lights glaring into the night, noise, industrial traffic in a residential area and more.

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Ferraro tells Nelson it doesn’t appear the developers have overstepped their bounds, but says he’s looking to see if there’s a solution that works for everyone.

“We’ve reached out to see with the developer if they would be amenable to help us on some of these things….”

Ferraro says four industrial buildings are going into the space, and are expected to bring hundreds of jobs to Jacksonville.

He tells Nelson a possible solution for the dust may include bringing water tankers to the construction site to limit dust flying into the air.

He says neighbors in the area have also expressed concerns about industrial use of their residential roads.

“We looked into that and it’s not going to happen,” said Ferraro.

Gerdick and Flowers say there’s not enough green space between their homes and the industrial park construction.

“We’re looking into that to make sure that the buffers haven’t changed, and they haven’t,” said Ferraro.

Nelson contacted the developer by phone asking if there are measures they plan on taking to find common ground with neighbors.

As soon as we have a response, we’ll bring it to you here, on-air, and on the Action News Jax mobile app.