Ambassador Hotel

420 Julia Street

The Ambassador Hotel originally opened in 1924 as 310 West Church Street Apartments, the first upscale apartments in downtown Jacksonville. In 1943, it was converted into a hotel by Charles Griner, a personal friend of Ed Ball, executor of the DuPont Estate. Following Griner’s death, Ball advised his widow Doris to demolish the building but she objected because she felt Jacksonville had already torn down every other old hotel in downtown. Rebranded the Ambassador Hotel in 1955, the business survived until 1998 when the entire building was condemned and closed. Vacant for 24 years, the six story brick and limestone Georgian Revival style building is poised to be renovated by December 2022. Axis Hotels, LLC is now in the process of a $17.6 million restoration of the Ambassador into a 100-room TRYP by Wyndham hotel, restaurant, lounge, meeting room and fitness center.

Ashley Square

650 Newnan Street

Construction continues on the transformation of an 1.02-acre surface parking lot at the northwest corner of East Ashley and Newnan Streets into an affordable housing development for residents aged 62 years old and up. A joint venture between Tampa-based Blue Sky Communities, LLC. and Aging True, the $15 million project will include the construction of a six-story, 120 unit residential structure and 160-space parking garage.

The Doro

128 A. Philip Randolph Boulevard

Rise, a Valdosta-based development firm, is in the beginning stages of a project to construct a new eight-story, 247-unit mixed-use apartment development at 960 East Adams Street in the Sports and Entertainment District. Called The Doro, the $35.6 million development will include a 284-space parking garage, 4,875 square feet of ground floor retail space and additional roof top amenities.

Florida Baptist Convention Building

218 West Church Street

The adaptive reuse of the long abandoned First Baptist Convention Building is now underway. Completed in 1924, the First Baptist Convention Building is notable for being the last office building in Downtown Jacksonville designed by Henry John Klutho. JWB Real Estate Capital plans to convert the building into a mixed-use project that will include 24 apartments, two 2,000 square foot restaurants and 1,147 square feet of retail space. Combined, the Old Federal Reserve Bank and Florida Baptist Convention Buildings are estimated to cost $18.55 million to bring back to life.

(JWB Real Estate Capital)

(JWB Real Estate Capital)

The Hendricks at San Marco

2139 Thacker Avenue

(Corner Lot Development Group and Harbert Realty Services)

The demolition of a significant portion of the South Jacksonville Presbyterian Church on Hendricks Avenue is now underway. Once the fellowship hall and education buildings come down, they’ll be replaced with a 133-unit apartment complex called The Hendricks at San Marco. The four story project being developed by Corner Lot Development Group and Harbert Realty Services will include a three-level parking garage and be completed by February 2023.

The project is one of three major infill developments to rise at the intersection Hendricks Avenue and Atlantic Boulevard. It will be joined by the East San Marco Publix shopping center already under construction (see images 5 through 9) and a 27-unit Toll Brothers townhouse community.

The 1230 Hendricks

1230 Hendricks Avenue

Construction is underway on a $32 million urban, infill mixed-use development on the 3.3-acre former Florida Baptist Convention property in San Marco. Called The 1230 Hendricks, the five-story project is comprised of 345 multifamily units, parking garage and 5,000 square feet of ground-level retail space. Being developed by Block One Ventures and its affiliates, residential amenities will included an expansive fitness center, bike storage, pet spa, clubroom with gaming, lounging and remote work areas, pool courtyard, garden courtyard, and views across the river to downtown Jacksonville from the rooftop pool and sky lounge topping the sixth level of the seven-level, 526 stall parking garage. Preleasing is anticipated to begin in 2022. Completion is anticipated in the second quarter of 2023.

East San Marco Townhomes

Arcadia Place

The proposed East San Marco townhomes (Toll Brothers)

National homebuilder Toll Brothers recently acquired a 1.03-acre parcel just east of the Publix Super Markets, Inc. anchored East San Marco development that is currently under construction. Site clearing is now underway on the property bounded by Atlantic Boulevard, Arcadia Place, Minerva Avenue and Alford Place. Toll Brothers plans to construct a 27-unit town house community on the empty parcel. The development will be comprised of five town house buildings with bungalow court style courtyards separating them.

VyStar Credit Union Parking Garage

54 West Forsyth Street

(VyStar Credit Union)

The City of Jacksonville is reviewing a permit application for a proposed $21 million parking garage for VyStar Credit Union. Located at West Forsyth and Laura Streets, the seven-level, 807-space structure will include 13,169 square feet of ground floor retail space along Laura and Main Streets.

(VyStar Credit Union)

Development update by Ennis Davis, AICP. Contact Ennis at