404 West Julia Street

A recent move by the Downtown Investment Authority and City of Jacksonville to modify the Downtown Historic Preservation and Revitalization Trust Fund appears to be immediately paying dividends as another long abandoned structure in downtown is now headed for restoration and adaptive reuse.

With Dasher Hurst Architects as the applicant, the St. Augustine-based Augustine Development Group is poised to go before the Downtown Development Review Board (DDRB) on November 12th, to seek Conceptual Design Approval for the adaptive reuse of the former Marine National Bank, the construction of a new 8-story apartment building and parking garage.

Originally completed in 1927 as the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce, the 3-story building at 404 North Julia Street would be retrofitted to contain 36 residential apartment units and 3,240 square feet of ground floor commercial space. Working with the City of Jacksonville Historic Preservation Office and the State Historic Preservation Office, the developer would not pursue Final Approval until documentation ensuring that the renovation meets historic requirements has been received.

The original facade of the Jacksonville Chamber of Commerce building at the intersection of Julia and Duval Streets.

Immediately west of 404 North Julia Street, the new construction would include an 8-story apartment building with 103 units and an 8-story precast concrete parking structure with 487 parking spaces. To be located at the intersection of Church and Pearl Streets, the parking structure would provide necessary parking for this project, the adjacent Ambassador Hotel redevelopment, the Independent Life Building redevelopment and the Fire & Rescue Department’s headquarters at 515 North Julia Street.

An example of clustering complementing uses within a compact setting, 404 North Julia Street is the third major project proposed by Augustine Development Group on Julia Street.

At 310 West Church Street, through Axis Hotels, LLC., the former **Ambassador Hotel **will be renovated into a 127-room La Quinta Inn and Suites hotel with a rooftop bar. The $15 million hotel will be managed by Integrity Hospitality.

Across Julia Street, at 233 West Duval Street, Augustine Development plans to transform the former Independent Life and Accident Insurance Company building into a 19-story mixed-use project featuring 240 market-rate apartments with a ground floor grocery store and food hall. In addition, the rooftop will be remodeled to include a high-end seafood restaurant, lounge and terrace with an infinity pool.

Nearby, JWB Real Estate is planning the restoration and adaptive reuse of the Old Federal Reserve Bank, Federal Reserve Bank, Florida Baptist Convention Building and the Porter House Mansion. Additional projects in the immediate vicinity include a new corporate headquarters for JEA and the adaptive reuse of the Jones Brothers Furniture building by Ace Jax, LLC. and a similar mixed-use development focused on former First Baptist Church properties recently acquired by Jim and Ellen Wiss.

Take a look at the 404 West Julia Street presentation prepared for the DDRB and let us know what you think about the conceptual design plans for downtown’s latest adaptive reuse project.