Mayor Curry is earning his “Demo Lenny” moniker as he proceeds with his controversial effort to buy and raze the Jacksonville Landing. Interior demolition and salvage operations have been happening since October, and wrecking crews have now started tearing down the exterior structure, beginning with the western section formerly occupied by Chicago Pizza and GLHF game bar. This is the next step in a plan that will ultimately turn the festival marketplace into a green space that wags have dubbed “Lenny’s Lawn.”
Whereas the demolitions of the old courthouse and City Hall Annex buildings earlier this year were accompanied by watch parties and a media blitz touting the projects as major development wins, the city has been more reticent with the Landing. This demolition has proven more controversial, with a number of movers and shakers and members of the public criticizing the $25 million+ price tag, the lack of public input, and the unclear replacement plans. Now, the city is moving surely but quietly as it demolishes the orange-roofed structure.
Here’s a last look at the Jacksonville Landing as it comes down.
Next page: more pictures of the Landing demolition