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Natural hair products company plans factory in Jacksonville PAGE 10

June 14-20, 2018 • Free


Record & Observer City’s vision for Landing space JACKSONVILLE

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Record & Observer A PARK FOR THE LANDING

Rendering from the city Parks and Recreation Department show a park at shopping center site. BY DAVID CAWTON STAFF WRITER

If the city gets full control of the Jacksonville Landing, Mayor Lenny Curry plans to demolish the aging riverfront mall to make room for a sprawling urban park. That’s the idea behind new design renderings obtained this week from the city’s Parks and Recreation Department. The conceptual art for the almost 6-acre site depicts an expansive mix of

A rendering from the city Parks and Recreation Department show greenspace and pedestrian paths where the Jacksonville Landing stands today.“Mayor Curry’s idea would utilize centrally located property that is on the river and in the heart of Downtown as a riverfront plaza,” said Brian Hughes, the mayor’s chief of staff.

greenspace and pedestrian paths where the Landing stands. It comes two weeks after the Office of General Counsel sent Jacksonville Landing Investments Inc. an eviction letter for allegedly breaching terms of the company’s lease agreement with the city. JLI, part of Sleiman Enterprises Inc., owns the three buildings comprising the Landing. The city owns the ground underneath and leases that to Sleiman’s SEE LANDING, PAGE 10

Photo by Max Marbut

Mark Basch: targeted by activist investment firm PAGE 6

The District OK’d by City Council

Karen Mathis: Restaurants, shops planned at Tinseltown PAGE 8

Next for Southbank development, buying property from JEA. PAGE 7




Page 2 • Thursday, June 14, 2018

Jacksonville Daily Record/Jacksonville Record & Observer

Building a city that young people want to call home


When Jerry Mallot came to town in 1994, one of the city’s economic development issues was how to keep young people in town. They would graduate and leave, searching for more opportunities in bigger cities, such as Atlanta, New York, Washington, D.C., and Charlotte, North Carolina. And, even more troublesome, they would stay. Mallot says that’s not the case anymore. Not only are a lot of millennials, as those in their 20s and 30s are called now, staying in town but others are moving home or relocating from other environments, looking for opportunities. The veteran JAXUSA Partnership president will retire Sept. 1 and is talking about the past, present and future of economic development. He spoke Wednesday with the Southside Business Men’s Club. He will keynote the partnership’s quarterly luncheon Aug. 30, just before he steps down. JAXUSA Partnership is the economic development division of JAX Chamber. As its leader, Mallot, 70, guided the area’s efforts to attract jobs, such as those that would keep young professionals at home and bring in more. He recounts his time here, noting the trends of the past that lead to the future.

JAXUSA, in previous incarnations, became regional, bringing on Baker, Clay, Flagler, Nassau, Putnam and St. Johns counties to join Duval’s efforts. It wasn’t just Jacksonville anymore. The announcement in 1993 that Jacksonville won the Jaguars NFL franchise was followed by years of economic growth until the bust. Mallot said 1994-2000 was a good run, not only in business, but with the Jaguars performance on the field. Then came 9/11 and a recession, although the area remained active, in part because of preparations for the 2005 Super Bowl hosted in Mallot Jacksonville. That momentum didn’t last a long time. The Great Recession of 2007-09 dashed a lot of plans. Through it all, however, Jacksonville recruited big companies and thousands of jobs, including for the millennial population: Fidelity National Financial, Fidelity Investments, Deutsche Bank, GE Oil & Gas, Macquarie Group and Amazon among the many. That also elevated the area’s efforts to become an international business community. And business is, as he says, booming again. One area that remains to be addressed is Downtown development to the extent of other Southeastern cities, such as Charlotte and Nashville. Jacksonville is coming along. “Downtown is making progress now in a big way,” Mallot said. That will help keep the millennials — and those coming after them — at home or returning. “Twenty years ago, we lost our young people,” he said. “That is not true today.”



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Dick’s Wings owner buying Tilted Kilt ARC Group Inc., operator of the Dick’s Wings & Grill restaurant chain, said Monday it will buy the Tilted Kilt Pub Eatery chain in a complex transaction. In a news release, ARC Group said a company owned by ARC Group board member Fred Alexander called SDA Holdings is buying Tilted Kilt. But SDA only intends to hold Tilted Kilt until ARC Group obtains financing to buy it. “We are in the process of finalizing a financing plan for ARC Group that will enable it to obtain the funds necessary to complete the acquisition of Tilted Kilt. We expect ARC Group to complete the acquisition of Tilted Kilt within the next few months,” ARC Group Chairman Seenu Kasturi said in the release. The purchase price was not announced. Dick’s Wings has 20 restaurants in Florida and Georgia. Tilted Kilt has 47 restaurants in the U.S. and Canada.

Admit it – you eat raw cookie dough Cookie dough is trending, both for baking and just for eating. Grocery stores stock refrigerated ready-to-eat dough – and specialty retail stores are rising to do the same. Cookie Dough Bliss, which makes safe-to-eat-without-baking cookie dough, intends to open in The Shoppes at Village Walk at 7643 Gate Parkway. It offers more than 20 flavors, such as Red Velvet Cream Cheese Swirl, Brownie Batter, Oatmeal Raisin and Andes Mint. But didn’t Mom always say not to eat raw cookie dough because the raw eggs in it might make you sick? Well, says it is safe to use pasteurized egg products in foods that don’t need to be cooked, and that’s what Cookie Dough Bliss uses. It is expected to open by early August. According to the Concord, North Carolina-based company’s website, Jacksonville and Orlando are the first locations in Florida. For more information, visit

IMPLOSIONS Northside cooling towers going away At 8 a.m. Saturday, demolition crews plan to implode the twin 464-foot-tall cooling towers at the St. Johns River Power Park in North Jacksonville. In advance of the blast, parts of New Berlin Road, Island Drive and William Ostner Road near the power park will be closed at 7 a.m. A joint venture of JEA and Florida Power and Light, the facility closed in January.

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Thursday, June 14, 2018 • Page 3

Job threat rises with hurricane strength ECONOMIC TRENDS

If a Category 3 storm hit Duval County, it would impact 10.8 percent of businesses and 13.5 percent of workers. BY MARK BASCH CONTRIBUTING WRITER

A Category 2 hurricane would threaten flood damage to only about 1.7 percent of Duval County businesses, affecting 2.9 percent of private sector workers in the county. However, a Category 3 storm would threaten far more. A Category 3, which would affect a lot more Downtown businesses along the St. Johns River, could cause flood damage to 10.8 percent of Duval businesses, affecting 13.5 percent of workers. That’s what the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics tells us, based on an analysis of counties in hurricane flood zones along the Atlantic and Gulf coasts. Hurricane season is June 1-Nov. 30. As we begin another season, you’re certain to see a lot of data about the number of people and homes in danger from potential storms striking the Jacksonville area. Since the BLS is focused on jobs, the agency provides data on the number of businesses in danger. The BLS creates the data by matching flood zone maps from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and state emergency management agencies with quarterly data collected by the BLS on wages, employment and counts of establishments. The BLS says it started creating disaster zone maps after Sept. 11, 2001, with a map of lower Manhattan. After Hurricane Sandy in 2012, the agency began using flood zone maps to produce data on hurricane-prone businesses. The current maps use data from the third quarter of 2017. The BLS said it uses third-quarter data because the months of July, August and September are the peak months of the hurricane season. The Duval County map shows a Category 3 or higher hurricane poses the biggest threat to businesses, because so much of the Downtown area would be affected.

Employment in Duval County flood zones Here is how many businesses and workers would be impacted in each hurricane flood zone. Zone 1 is the area that would be flooded in a Category 1 hurricane. A Category 2 hurricane would cause flooding in zones 1 and 2.

Average Total Monthly quarterly Area Establishments employment wages Zone Zone11




Zone22 Zone




Zone33 Zone Zone Zone44






$236,540,143 Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Total 3,965 85,164 $1,148,407,113 Unaffected 25,209

According to the BLS data, 3,140 county businesses employing 67,373 people earning $912 million in quarterly wages would be impacted. An additional 825 businesses with 17,791 employees would be impacted by a Category 4 or higher storm. By comparison about what to expect, Hurricane Irma was downgraded to a tropical storm as it blew by Jacksonville. Still, Downtown and other areas flooded, forcing businesses to close



and then clean up. Major hurricanes would have a bigger economic impact on the two other coastal communities in the Jacksonville metropolitan area, as far as percentage of businesses affected. The BLS data shows 35 percent of St. Johns County businesses would be affected by a Category 4 storm or higher, and 27 percent of Nassau County establishments. The maps, as you would expect, show significant flood potential in St. Augustine and Ponte Vedra

Beach in St. Johns County and in Fernandina Beach in Nassau County. Away from the coast, only 1.9 percent of Clay County businesses would be threatened with flooding from a Category 4 storm. The BLS does not have flood zone data for Baker County. You can check the data yourself on the agency’s website at www. MBASCH@ JAXDAILYRECORD.COM

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Page 4 • Thursday, June 14, 2018

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Developers protest proposed leasing rule change


Legislation would require a “Building Confirmation Letter” to provide potential tenants with information about what is needed to bring a building up to code. Commercial real estate developers were not happy Friday about legislation that could change the way they lease space to tenants. At a public meeting hosted by City Council member Joyce Morgan, area commercial property owners pushed back on her proposed ordinance requiring a “Building Confirmation Letter” from the Building Inspection Division of the city’s Planning and Development Department. The confirmation letter would provide a potential tenant with the site’s current or last known use and detail physical or mechanical upgrades that may be required for the new tenant’s business as they relate to building or fire codes. The legislation also would allow landlords to present certification from a Florida-licensed architect in lieu of one from the Building Inspection Division. The change would prevent property owners from leasing space to tenants before obtaining the letter. About two dozen landlords and small business owners attended the hourlong meeting to discuss the bill. Koko Head, general counsel for Hakimian Holdings, said the change could unfairly shift a burden currently on the tenant to the landlord. “It’s basically restricting the right to contract between tenants and landlords, and forcing them into a channel where they have to go to the city first at the landlord’s expense,” he said. He also wasn’t keen on potentially incurring additional costs by having to hire an architect to provide the certification, although he said commercial property owners more than likely will hire architects to make sure the process isn’t delayed. “We should call this the ‘full employment act for architects,’” Head said, explaining that property owners will need to rely on them to meet the requirements on time. City Building Inspection Chief Tom Goldsbury said the bill can be altered, possibly requiring the tenant to obtain the confirmation letter. “I don’t have a problem with that,” Goldsbury said. “I’d love to have the tenant come in so I can explain.” Goldsbury said his office will not proactively do preinspections, since his staff already is “overburdened” with its current workload. Instead, he said the office would provide the tenant with the most current inspection

Photo by David Cawton

City Council member Joyce Morgan, at the head of the table, met with landlords and small business owners over a proposal to require a “Building Confirmation Letter” before a property can be leased.

information. Restaurateur Miles Davis said he’s currently fighting his former landlord in court, claiming it failed to disclose code violations at the building before he signed his lease. Davis said it’s a common problem for small business owners who don’t have experience with leasing commercial space. “The tenant, particularly small business owners, should have some sense that if this is available to me for lease, this structure is a viable product,” he said, adding that “some assumptions are not unreasonable.” Davis said it shouldn’t be difficult for a landlord to ensure that the property is up to code and appropriate for the intended use. In response, Head and other representatives argued that most legitimate companies in North Florida work with tenants to avoid issues. The bill is deferred so “both sides can have input,” Morgan said. “I hear the landlord saying, we’re going to pass it on to the tenants. Well that’s understandable because the tenant’s going to pass that along to their customers through the services they provide,” she said. Morgan said she’ll proceed with the bill only when both sides agree how to proceed so that the legislation can “do something in this city that needs to be done.”

Mayor Curry lands JAX Chamber endorsement

Mayor Lenny Curry received the backing of JAXBIZ on Tuesday for his 2019 re-election campaign, nearly eight months before the election. JAXBIZ, a political action committee that advocates on behalf of the JAX Chamber, backed Curry over former Mayor Alvin Brown in 2015. “JAXBIZ is looking to turn a corner,” said JAXBIZ Board Chair Dane Grey. “We’re looking to hold our political leaders accountable for their actions, whether good or bad,” he said. Grey said Curry kept campaign promises of passing pension reform, encouraging Downtown development and creating jobs. “We’re supporting him

because he’s doing everything he’s said he would do for us,” Grey said. Curry, a Republican, is three years into his first four-year term in office. Election Day is March 19. If Curry fails to secure a majority of votes in March, he could face an opponent May 14. JAX Chamber President Daniel Davis said it was “very clear” who the group should endorse. “We want to make sure that everyone in the community’s on board and we’re moving the train down the tracks,” he said. While no big-name candidate has entered the race, Democrat Doreszell Cohen, Republican Jimmy Hill and independents Connell Crooms and Vishaun Grissett have filed to run. City Council President Anna Lopez Brosche previously said she would not rule out a run, but a decision would come after her council presidency ends June 30. Davis said the endorsement of Curry stands, regardless of competition. “There’s tons of momentum happening in Jacksonville and we don’t want to lose any of that traction,” Davis said. Since filing in March, Curry’s re-election campaign raised $2 million between his personal campaign account and the Jacksonville on the Rise PAC, which supports him. Curry said getting off to a fast start is “just how I’m built.” “The record’s clear,” Curry said. “I’ve delivered on everything I said I’d deliver but I’m not resting on that,” he said.


Gibbs to remain on DIA Board Attorney Craig Anthony Gibbs will remain on the Downtown Investment Authority board. City Council approved his second full term Tuesday, which will expire June 30, 2020. Gibbs is the managing partner of The Law Office of Craig Gibbs, P.A.

Move to push out Zahn fails A City Council resolution urging JEA interim CEO Aaron Zahn not to apply for the permanent position failed Tuesday night. The bill sponsored by council member Garrett Dennis bill received four votes in favor. Zahn was installed as the interim CEO in May after Paul McElroy stepped down. The city’s electric, water and sewer utility is searching for his replacement.

According to the website, JAXBIZ “promotes business-friendly leadership within local and state government through the endorsement of pro-business candidates who display a commitment to economic growth.” The group’s other endorsements this year include Republican Gov. Rick Scott in his bid to unseat incumbent U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson, and Republican Wyman Duggan over Democrat Tracye Polson in the race to replace state Rep. Jay Fant in House District 15. They’re on the Nov. 6 ballot. DCAWTON@ JAXDAILYRECORD.COM @DAVIDCAWTON (904) 356-2466

Photo by David Cawton

Mayor Lenny Curry, flanked by JAX Chamber President Daniel Davis, left, and Dane Grey, JAXBIZ board chair, accepts the endorsement of JAXBIZ.

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Thursday, June 14, 2018 • Page 5


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Page 6 • Thursday, June 14, 2018

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Activist investment fund targets


Stock price, which dropped after disappointing earnings, surges after Starboard Value Fund buys shares. Group Inc.’s stock dropped May 4 following a disappointing earnings report, but it began a rebound the following week. That’s when activist investor Jeffrey Smith and his Starboard Value fund began buying shares of the Jacksonville-based company, which provides website development services for businesses. Starboard disclosed in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing Friday that it has accumulated 4.6 million Web. com shares, or 9.4 percent of the company’s stock. “It is now apparent why shares of have been trending higher since the company reported disappointing first quarter results back in May,” BWS Financial analyst Hamed Khorsand said in a research note Monday. “The investment firm did not disclose specific intentions, but we believe it could be the needed remedy to several quarters of reporting a decline in subscriber numbers,” Khorsand said as he upgraded his rating on the stock from “hold” to “buy.” Starboard’s SEC filing said it bought the stock because of a belief the shares “were undervalued and represented an attractive investment opportunity.” However, it also said the firm could make recommendations “concerning changes to the capitalization, ownership structure, board structure (including board composition), potential business combinations” and other matters. The late Friday filing prompted a Friday evening news release from saying it “welBrown comes open communication with its shareholders and values any input and suggestions that may advance its goal of enhancing shareholder value. We expect to engage in a constructive dialogue with Starboard moving forward.” Starboard’s interest comes about a year after reports surfaced that private equity firms were interested in buying Web. com. CEO David Brown wouldn’t comment on that when asked by analysts during the company’s quarterly conference call in August, but he left the door open for a possible buyout at some point. “I think it’s worth noting that we’ve always been open to whatever would build long-term shareholder value, whatever

File image is planning to move next year to a new building at 5379 Gate Parkway called Town Center Two.

maximizes our shareholders’ interests, and we’ve said numerous times and continue to say that we talk to lots of people from strategic to financial players in the market,” Brown said during the call. currently is headquartered in two buildings at Flagler Center, but is planning to move next year to a new six-story building at 5379 Gate Parkway called Town Center Two. Khorsand expects Starboard’s interest to force some action. “We are upgrading our rating to a Buy from Hold solely on the expectations Starboard is not a firm that goes quietly in the sunset when they have found a target and is one that would very likely force some changes,” he said. “These changes could be management and Board composition or forcing to get acquired. In either case, we believe this is a game changer scenario that would be a positive for shareholders compared to the path management has been on.”’s stock rose $2.40 to $23.45 Monday after Starboard’s late Friday disclosure.

Hortman said in a news release the moves are part of succession planning that has been ongoing for several years. Ameris completed its acquisition of Jacksonville-based Atlantic Coast on May 25. Ameris officially is headquartered in Moultrie, Georgia, but its executive offices are in Jacksonville.

Ameris Bancorp, ACFC executives make moves

One fund manager who invested in Jacksonville-based FRP Holdings Inc. is very pleased with the real estate developer’s performance this year. “FRP Holdings is one of our most successful investments in the fund’s history and has contributed the largest profit in total dollars to date,” Bill Chen, managing partner of Rhizome Partners, said in his first-quarter letter to shareholders. FRP’s stock rose 27 percent in the first quarter after the company agreed to sell a portfolio of 41 industrial warehouses for $358.9 million. Chen said in the letter the fund actually sold its FRP shares before the quarter ended. “This is a symptom of having an investment reach fair value in a relatively short period of time. It forces us to sell our position in order to lower downside risk,” he said. Rhizome began buying shares of FRP in mid-2015, the letter said. It did not say how many shares it owned or the size of its profit.

It didn’t take long for top executives of Ameris Bancorp and Atlantic Coast Financial Corp. to make changes after Ameris completed its acquisition of Atlantic Coast. The three top executives of Atlantic Coast Financial last week were named the new top management team for Palm Beach Gardens-based FirstCity Bank of Commerce. Former Atlantic Coast CEO John Stephens will be FirstCity’s CEO, former Chief Financial Officer Tracy Keegan will be president and CFO of First City and former Chief Credit Officer Phillip Buddenbohm will be chief lending officer of First City. First City Chairman David Worley said in a news release the new team has “a proven track record in creating a highgrowth, high-performing franchise in great markets.” Meanwhile, Ameris also announced changes last week. Executive Vice President and Chief Operating officer Dennis Zember will be promoted to president and CEO. Current President and CEO Edwin Hortman will remain as executive chairman.

CSX short-line tracks up for sale CSX Corp. last week put six more short rail lines up for sale as the Jacksonville-based company continues to shed unwanted assets to increase efficiency. CSX said in a news release the six rail segments, totaling 650 miles, could potentially be operated more efficiently by a “highly qualified third party.” Three of the six lines are in upstate New York and the others are in Kentucky, North Carolina and West Virginia. This year, CSX also put 175 miles of track up for sale in Georgia and Alabama.

Fund manager profits from FRP

Taylor Morrison buying AV Homes Taylor Morrison Home Corp. announced an agreement last week to buy AV Homes Inc., a deal motivated in part to enter

the Jacksonville market. “The joining of Taylor Morrison and AV Homes supports our strategic growth priority by bringing us deeper into five of our current markets, adding Jacksonville to the portfolio, and further expanding our offerings in the affordable first-time buyer and active adult consumer segments,” Taylor Morrison CEO Sheryl Palmer said in a news release. Both companies are headquartered in Scottsdale, Arizona. Taylor Morrison is a national homebuilding and development company, but AV Homes’ primary operations are in the Jacksonville, Orlando, Phoenix, Charlotte and Dallas-Fort Worth markets. According to its website, Palmer AV Homes is building houses in five Northeast Florida communities between Fernandina Beach and St. Augustine. Taylor Morrison agreed to buy AV Homes for cash and stock valued at about $963 million. The companies expect to complete the merger late in the third quarter or early in the fourth quarter.

TSYS buying Jacksonville’s iMobile3

Payments technology company Total System Services Inc. announced an agreement to buy iMobile3, a Jacksonville company that also offers payment technology solutions. Terms of the deal were not disclosed. Total System Services, which operates under the brand TSYS, is a publicly traded company based in Columbus, Georgia. It produced revenue of $4.9 billion last year.

Clarification Although FDIC data indicates Jacksonville-based Florida Capital Bank currently has eight banking offices in four markets, Florida Capital says it operates four branches in Jacksonville, Gainesville, Orlando and Tampa. It responded to a report in this column last week about community banks. MBASCH@ JAXDAILYRECORD.COM

Jacksonville Daily Record/Jacksonville Record & Observer

Thursday, June 14, 2018 • Page 7

The District wins approval from council Developers who want to build the mixed-use neighborhood on the Southbank now must come up with $18.5 million to buy the land from JEA.

The loan will be paid back through tax revenue generated from the Southside Tax Increment Financing District, which is part of the Downtown Southbank. Wallace said he anticipates being able to repay the general fund loan before the 15-year deadline.




With an economic development deal approved by City Council, developers of the 30-acre mixeduse project called The District will now move to purchase the Downtown Southbank property from JEA in July. Council members voted 9-5 on Tuesday to approve the deal, which includes $82 million in city-backed financial incentives and the creation of a Community Development District encompassing the property. Principals Michael Munz and Peter Rummell with Elements of Development Jacksonville LLC will now begin what is likely a 12to 18-month process that includes buying the land from JEA, establishing the Community DevelopMunz ment District and beginning the first phase of construction. “People are going to say, ‘wow this is Jacksonville,’ and that’s what we’re proud of and that’s why we’ve put the work into it we have,” said Munz after the vote. The group has until July 18 to close on an $18.5 million saleand-purchase agreement to acquire JEA’s former Southside Generating Station site. Closing on the 2014 agreement was extended four times since 2015. Munz said now that Elements has all the city approvals in hand, that sale can go through. JEA Board Chair Alan Howard on Wednesday said he sees no reason the sale won’t close. “JEA is obviously very pleased to see The District development pass this critical milestone towards completion,” said Howard. “We look forward to not just closing on this sale, but more importantly seeing The District developed and the impact it will make on Downtown Jacksonville,” he said. The generating station operat-

File image

Plans for The District include residential, retail, commercial and hotel spaces. Also planned is a marina and parks.

ed from 1947 to 2001, when it was decommissioned over a 10-year span. Howard said retiring the site opened it up for development. He said the JEA board will discuss “an innovative use of the proceeds from this sale to Elements,” at its meeting Tuesday. CREATING A CDD

Munz said he expects to have approval from the state to create the Community Development District within 120 days. “We’ll be making the calls, letting people know and moving forward with the project,” he said. According to state law, a CDD can “plan, finance, construct, operate and maintain community-wide infrastructure and services specifically for the benefit of its residents.” Because Elements doesn’t own the property, Munz said JEA will provide a letter verifying the purchase agreement to include in the application to the Florida Land and Water Adjudicatory Commission, the state agency with authority to create CDDs. The CDD will allow Elements to sell up to $30 million in revenue bonds to help pay for infrastructure. Construction costs are estimated at $24.7 million. The group has until Dec. 31, 2040, to repay the bonds through proceeds of a Recapture Enhanced Value grant worth up to 75 percent of the taxes generated from the property improvements.

The REV grant is worth the lesser of $56 million or the total principal, interest, fees and costs of any credit enhancement of the bonds. The 2040 deadline coincides with the sunset of the Southside Community Redevelopment Area, regardless of when Elements receives the Certificates of Use for the project. Some council members pushed back on the financial incentives package Tuesday, including Council President Anna Lopez Brosche. She was one of five council members who voted against the deal, saying her decision was based on Elements not disclosing its private financial projections on the entire project. “How do we know that the developer isn’t using the city’s investment and making significant profit on taxpayers’ money?” she asked before the vote. She said a deal this large should require the disclosure of that information. In committee meetings last week, Brosche also questioned the need for the REV grant and the continued need for the Southside Community Redevelopment Area, considering the Southbank is performing better than the Northbank. “They’re taking all the risk,” said Downtown Investment Authority CEO Aundra Wallace on Tuesday. “The money doesn’t go back to the developer, it goes back to those investors who lent

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them the money to pay that debt service.” Wallace also said if Elements fails to build everything it promised per the agreement, “there’s no REV grant for them.” Munz said he found Brosche’s questions “surprising.” “What I find very curious about the question is that we’ve gone through two workshops, which we requested, a number of council committees and we’ve brought everything to the table,” said Munz. “We’ve shared all the information we’re required to share,” he said. PUBLIC LAND

The other side of the deal is the development of public property. After Elements closes on the real estate, it must convey about 4.5 acres of riverfront and other park space to the city at no cost. According to the economic development agreement, the city will invest roughly $19 million into an adjacent project that includes a riverfront park, another pocket park, walking trails, an extension of the Southbank Riverwalk, bulkhead construction, a 100-space parking lot and the expansion of public roads and sidewalks on the Southbank. Wallace said the agency has nearly $9 million earmarked over the next three fiscal years and would borrow the rest from the city at 2.66 percent interest over 15 years.

Wallace said the agreement sends a clear message to outside capital that Jacksonville is willing to make deals. “Also, professionally what it does is it now allows me to focus a little bit more on some other projects,” said Wallace. “I do have a convention center coming down the line, as well as the Shipyards project, so we’ve got to turn our attention to other things.” Elements previously announced it had come to terms with a hotel operator to build a 147-room AC Hotel by Marriott to anchor the development, along with a grocer to anchor the retail portion. “I’m not going to make any announcements about the vertical just yet, but we will soon,” Munz said of potential tenants. He said the retail portion of the project will be appropriate for the area. “We’re targeting the types of shops you would see in San Marco or Avondale, and not necessarily ones in the Town Center,” he said. Munz said they’re also coming to terms with a large office user to occupy most, if not all, of the 200,000-square-foot office tower planned for the site. Palm Beach Gardens-based Kitson & Partners will oversee all aspects of the development, including coordinating with contractors. When completed, the estimated $600 million project could include up to 1,170 residential units for sale and lease; 200,000 square feet of office space; more than 200,000 square feet of retail; riverfront restaurants and bars; a 4-acre riverfront park and an extension of the Southbank Riverwalk; a 125-slip marina; and the hotel. “It’s in everybody’s best interest for us to be able to move forward as quickly as possible,” Munz said.


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President, Treasurer & Director

Vice President & Director

Stephen T. Cumella Secretary, Chairman & Director


Photo age progressed to 18 yrs

DOB: 12/18/91 Hair: Red Eyes: Green


Cecil W. Powell & Company Telephone 904-353-3181 | Agents: Robert Theus, Benjamin K. Powell Account Manager: Annette Evans, Kassandra Sullins

Licensed to write Surety Bonds | Ocean Marine & Inland Marine Insurance

Page 8 • Thursday, June 14, 2018

Jacksonville Daily Record/Jacksonville Record & Observer


Retail, restaurants planned for Tinseltown lot


Triforce Development would build two 7,000square-foot buildings in front of movie theater. Triforce Development intends to buy property along Southside Boulevard to develop Tinseltown Plaza, a retail center for up to six tenants that will include the area’s first Soupa Saiyan Asian Noodle Bar restaurant and the seventh Kazu Sushi Burrito. The site is in front of the 20-screen Cinemark Tinseltown. Triforce, led by brothers Paul and Louis Sleiman, also signed tenant Noire The Nail Bar, a boutique salon that will open its first Jacksonville store in Tinseltown Plaza. A Noire salon already operates in Nocatee. Soupa Saiyan is themed around the “Dragon Ball Z” Japanese anime action-adventure television series and will offer noodle bowl/Vietnamese pho. The Sleimans said the concept is owned and operated by the Bento Group of Orlando. The group operates two Bento Asian Kitchen + Sushi locations in Jacksonville and plans a third in Jacksonville Beach. Triforce is reviewing proposals from several more tenants to take the remaining space in the plaza at 4549 Southside Blvd. Two 7,000-square-foot retail buildings will comprise the plaza on a site currently used for parking. Ideal Hospitality Investments Inc. of Pooler, Georgia, owns the property and is under contract to sell to Triforce. “Businesses anchored by the Tinseltown movie theater drive some of the highest sales volumes in Jacksonville” Louis Sleiman said in an email. “Our tenants are expected to drive even higher sales volumes on the heels of strong trade area demand, walkable proximity to the theatre and a modern, upscale building design that caters to a young and vibrant Southside demographic,” he said. Triforce filed site plans with

Special to Daily Record

Soupa Saiyan Asian Noodle Bar, Kazu Sushi Burrito and Noire The Nail Bar are planned for the shopping center Triforce Developments wants to build in front of the Cinemark Tinseltown movie theater at 4549 Southside Blvd.

the city for the 1.86-acre site for the 14,000 square feet of space. Triforce said it is under contract to buy the land and start construction during the fourth quarter and complete construction in the first quarter. It declined to provide an investment estimate. “We are purchasing the only prime parcel of land remaining in the Tinseltown DRI, which insulates our center from the threat of new supply and other competitive pressures that are beginning to plague many retailers taking space at the St. Johns Town Center,” said the email, referring to the Development of Regional Impact approved for the area. Triforce applied for a zoning exception for restaurant tenants to serve alcohol inside and also for the sale and service of alcohol and food in outdoor patio space. Triforce said it is reviewing proposals from restaurants, boutique fitness centers, dessert shops and other food, entertainment and service-oriented users. Triforce hired Franklin Street to handle leasing for the plaza. Carrie Smith and Ricky Ostrofsky with Franklin Street will represent it. The Sleiman brothers developed the 9,000-square-foot Galleria Marketplace at 6025 Butler Point Road in 2016 and sold it at the end of 2017 for $4.8 million. Kazu Sushi Burrito opened its first location in Galleria Marketplace in 2016.

Special to Daily Record

UniFirst Corp. plans to build a $6 million industrial laundry facility on 5.62 acres at 4251 Perimeter Industrial Parkway E., at northeast Interstate 295 and Pritchard Road.

Triforce also developed the 7,600-square-foot Baymeadows Corner center at 8355 Baymeadows Road. Tenants include T-Mobile and Firehouse Subs, which opened its first Jacksonville drive-thru location there. The grand opening was this week. Triforce said Cinemark Tinseltown is one of the top performing movie theaters in Northeast Florida and the Tinseltown retail area is one of Jacksonville’s highest performing retail areas. Triforce said more than 114,000 vehicles pass by daily. There also are 580 hotel rooms among five nearby hotels, more than 2,000 apartments within a mile, and more than 3 million square feet of nearby offices that include Merrill Lynch, Florida Blue and Fidelity Investments.

UniFirst launches development in Perimeter West

UniFirst Corp. won approval to build a $6 million industrial laundry facility in Northwest Jacksonville in the Perimeter West Industrial Park. When completed by summer 2019, the plant will create the need for 40-50 new hires, said spokesman Adam Soreff. The city approved a permit Monday for Dana B. Kenyon Co. to build the 52,000-square-foot structure on 5.62 acres at 4251 Perimeter Industrial Parkway E., at northeast Interstate 295 and Pritchard Road. Soreff, director of marketing and communications, said UniFirst broke ground Monday and the construction timeline, including equipment installation, is 12-14 months. When the new plant opens, UniFirst will close a 17,100-square-foot facility at 1446 Haines St., which is a leased branch operation. It works with a servicing plant in Ocala to process the garments. Employees with the Haines Street operation will move to the Perimeter West plant. “The new facility allows for a greater presence, local processing and for market growth longterm,” Soreff said. When the Perimeter West facility is fully operational, there will be a ramp-up period, he said. It ultimately will employ about

DEVELOPMENT NOTES n Fifth Third Bank sold 1.33 acres at 7147 Merrill Road for almost $1.38 million to JCCW of Merrill Rd LLC for development of a car wash. n Jacksonville-based Regency Centers Corp. is moving its training room from the second floor, which it no longer leases, to space it has on the first floor in the Wells Fargo Center. The city reviewing a building-permit application for a $400,000 renovation of almost 4,500 square feet of space for Regency’s training and other uses in Suite 114 in the tower at 1 Independent Drive W.

100-115 people, including the new hires who will focus on the processing side of the business. “This new facility will be a much larger, full-fledged servicing plant operation that can work independently from other UniFirst operations,” Soreff said. A second phase would add 8,707 square feet, plans show. Soreff said UniFirst, based in Wilmington, Massachusetts, will own the Perimeter West plant and no longer will lease the Haines Street location. In the full-service uniform rental program, garments are cleaned and serviced. UniFirst provides work clothing and protective wear as well as floor mats, mops, wipers, and restroom paper and soap products.

Colliers seeks Certificate of Use for new location

Colliers International applied for a Certificate of Use for its Northeast Florida office relocation to the 23-floor SunTrust Tower at 76 S. Laura St., Suite 1500. The certificate says it will use almost 8,500 square feet of space. Colliers International will move from the 17th floor of the 42-story Bank of America Tower at 50 N. Laura St. Colliers International Northeast Florida Managing Director Christian Oldenburg said the office will end up with an increase of about 1,000 square feet of usable space in the SunTrust Tower. He said previously that 50 people will make the move, which is expected in August.

Jacksonville Daily Record/Jacksonville Record & Observer

Thursday, June 14, 2018 • Page 9

Dav-Lin Interior Contractors is building-out the SunTrust Tower space at a construction cost of $392,343.


Downtown offices set for The Shopping Center Group The Shopping Center Group’s new Downtown offices are approved for build-out. The city issued a permit Monday for Skyline Construction Inc. to renovate 1,546 square feet of space on the 24th floor of Riverplace Tower at a build-out cost of $130,000. The retail tenant and landlord services group currently leases space in the Waterview I building in Southside at 10748 Deerwood Park Blvd., No. 107. A spokeswoman said The Shopping Center Group expects to be in the new space by July 1. The Riverplace Tower offices are designed for six professionals and an open floor plan for improved workflow.

Hakimian to build office, restaurant at Liberty Center

Jacksonville-based Hakimian Holdings LLC is closer to adding a restaurant and office building on two outparcels at Liberty Center in the Southpoint area. The St. Johns River Water Management District issued a permit for HH Center LLC, led by retail and office investor Ben Hakimian, to develop the two outparcels at 5105 and 5117 Butler Blvd. Hakimian Holdings owns the six-story, 118,734-square-foot Liberty Center office building at 7077 Bonneval Road. The 7.2acre site is at Bonneval Road and Butler Boulevard.

Photo by Monty Zickuhr

True Food Kitchen is taking over the former Mitchell’s Fish Market at St. Johns Town Center.

Hakimian Holdings wants to build a 100-seat, 5,625-squarefoot restaurant at 5101 Butler Blvd., on the western corner of the site and a 5,600-square-foot urgent care center at 5117 Butler Blvd. on the eastern corner. He said previously he was negotiating with a national publicly traded upscale restaurant. Hakimian Holdings bought the property in February 2016 and moved its headquarters there.

True Food gets city OK to renovate at Town Center True Food Kitchen, the Phoenix-based “health-driven, seasonal restaurant,” is renovating the former Mitchell’s Fish Market in St. Johns Town Center. The city issued a permit Friday for Wolford Retail Builders Inc. of Tampa to renovate the interior and exterior of the restaurant at a project cost of $900,000.

The restaurant, at 5205 Big Island Drive, will comprise 7,540 square feet of inside space at the free-standing restaurant and 1,064 square feet outside. CEO Christine Barone said in May she expects to open True Food Kitchen by year-end. KMATHIS@ JAXDAILYRECORD.COM @MATHISKB (904) 356-2466

n Zaxby’s applied to St. Johns County to build a 3,652-square-foot, 70seat restaurant on almost an acre at Florida 16 and Harvest Lane, east of Interstate 95. n Cantina Louie opened its Southside location at 9726 Touchton Road, No. 105, in the Tinseltown area. Cantina Louie is a Jacksonville-based “Mexican Street Food” restaurant. Tinseltown is its fourth location, coming after openings in Atlantic Beach, Fernandina Beach and St. Augustine. Two more are planned in Arlington and Nocatee. The Arlington location is at Monument Road near Interstate 295 and is slated to open in 2019. The Nocatee site, at 10870 U.S. 1 in the Shoppes of St. Johns is expected to open in August. n The former Outback Steakhouse space in the Regency Park Shopping Center could become Mr. Crab, A seafood restaurant. Victor McNair applied for a Certificate of Use to open Mr. Crab in the space at 9400 Atlantic Blvd. The certificate states a seating capacity of 240 in the 6,200-square-foot space. Bloomin’ Brands closed the Outback Steakhouse in Regency Park in late 2016.


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Page 10 • Thursday, June 14, 2018

Jacksonville Daily Record/Jacksonville Record & Observer

Hair-care manufacturer features cannabis oil Chicago-based Ecoco appears to be Project Blaze, a company that wants to open a factory to Jacksonville. BY KAREN BRUNE MATHIS EDITOR

Ecoco Inc., a Chicago-based hair products manufacturer, wants to set up a 170,000-squarefoot factory in EastPark. That matches the description of the code-named Project Blaze, the eco-friendly Midwest-based hair-care product maker that seeks city incentives to set up a 150-job plant in EastPark. Ecoco Jax LLC registered its name with the state in May with a principal address of 11650 Central Parkway. The company also filed an application with the city to do business at the site. Aaron Tiram, Ecoco president, is the manager. He was not available for comment Wednesday. His public Facebook page says he lives in Chicago and is from Miami. Ecoco describes itself on as a cosmetics pioneer active with green technology. It was “founded in 1983 with the idea of uniting beauty trends with environmental consciousness,” according to The site shows its products and natural ingredients, including the Cannabis Sativa Oil wash, conditioner and body lotion.

Special to the Daily Record

Ecoco Inc. sells a line of products that include cannabis sativa oil.

A city legislative fact sheet said Blaze has been in business since the mid-1980s and it wants to invest $11 million to buy and equip a 170,000-square-foot building off Beach Boulevard in Southside to make and distribute its products. City Office of Economic Development Executive Director Kirk Wendland told the Mayor’s Budget Review Committee in May the location is in the EastPark business center. City spokeswoman Tia Ford said Wednesday the city has no information or comment to pro-

vide. Ecoco Inc. says its “globally sourced ingredients are nearly all naturally derived, delivering great personal style without the carbon footprint.” It says its products are available at most beauty supply stores and many major retailers. Blaze currently makes its products in the Midwest and is looking for an expansion location in the Southeast, the city said. Legislation calls for Blaze to create 150 jobs over five years at an average annual wage of $50,000. It seeks a $450,000 Qualified Tar-

get Industry Tax Refund from the city and state based on $3,000 per job. The city would pay 20 percent, or $600, per job for a total up to $90,000. The state would pay 80 percent, or $2,400 per job, for a total of up to $360,000. The economic development agreement states that 75 jobs would be created by the end of 2018, followed by 25 jobs each by year-end 2019 and 2020 and 15 in 2021. The final 10 jobs would be created by year-end 2022. The QTI refund would be paid after the jobs are created and the

average wage is verified by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity. The proposed fouryear payout would start in 2019. Blaze receives a manufacturing project waiver from the state Department of Economic Opportunity reducing the minimum average wage requirement from 115 percent to 107.9 percent of the average annual private-sector wage in the state as of Jan. 1, according to the legislation, Resolution 2018-338. The resolution approves the execution of the economic development agreement between the city and Blaze. A city summary says the jobs would be created by Dec. 31, 2022, and generate a $7.5 million annual payroll, excluding benefits. The $11 million capital investment covers manufacturing equipment, furniture and real estate purchases and improvements. Blaze requests fast-track approval for council to vote on the legislation after two readings rather than three. The bill is in committee review. The next council meeting is June 26. The city considers the company a high-impact target industry because it is a manufacturer and said Blaze stated the combination of city and state incentives is a material factor in its decision to expand in Jacksonville. KMATHIS@JAXDAILYRECORD.COM @MATHISKB (904) 356-2466

Landing: ‘A front lawn’ for core of Downtown CONTINUED FROM PAGE 1

company. JLI assumed the lease from Rouse-Jacksonville Inc. in 2003 and extended it to 2041. Brian Hughes, Curry’s chief of staff, said Wednesday the rendering came after “a series of conceptual discussions with Mayor Curry” and the executive leadership team. “The design concept you have is the result of those discussions and was created by a city staff member,” Hughes said. He did not identify that staff member. The renderings obtained Tuesday show pedestrian walkways through formal gardens, water features and vegetation, along with expanses of greenspace. “Mayor Curry’s idea would utilize centrally located property that is on the river and in the heart of Downtown as a riverfront plaza,” said Hughes, who called the idea “a front lawn for the core of Downtown.” The docks along the St. Johns River, which remain closed after sustaining damage from hurricanes Irma in 2017 and Matthew in 2016, also would be repaired — another sore spot for Sleiman’s company. Flanked on either side by the Main Street Bridge and the Times-Union Center for the Performing Arts, the park would be along the existing Northbank Riverwalk. The renderings show an entrance ramp for traffic coming from Independent Drive East onto the Main Street Bridge would be removed. A pedestrian and bike path would connect to the bridge from the park. Away from the river, the design

shows symmetrical buildings closer to the streets on either side of the park. Hughes said the city would “invite economic development that utilizes proximity to natural, public space,” and that the move beyond concept would require collaboration between public and private partners. “This drawing is really a launchpad for a discussion in our community,” he said. SLEIMAN’S RESPONSE

Sleiman Enterprises spokeswoman Katie Boyles issued a statement Wednesday in reaction to the drawing, saying that the company has invested more than $1.5 million into redevelopment efforts. She said the city of Jacksonville also spent millions in resources on new plans and studies. “In 2015, the city spent $100,000 on its own public design plans and we loved it,” said Boyles. “We wish they would pick one so we can get to work.” Boyles said the company has been ready to redevelop the Landing since 2003.


For those who remember Downtown before 1987, when the Landing was completed, the new rendering is similar to an old concept. In the decade before developer Rouse-Jacksonville began construction of the mall in 1985, there was a strong push by local and state officials to build an urban park. A “Land Water Conservation Fund Program Grant” application submitted in May 1980 to

the Florida Department of Natural Resources Division of Recreation and Parks and the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Heritage, Conservation and Recreation Services by the city details what would have been the “St. Johns River Esplanade,” an urban waterfront park where the Landing now stands. According to the 119-page document, Mayor Jake Godbold sought $500,000 in federal and $1 million in state funding to help construct the park. City Council in 1980 adopted two resolutions supporting the estimated $4.5 million project. Those plans would evolve over the next 15 years, eventually leading to the creation of Metropolitan Park near TIAA Bank Field. The Landing was completed in 1987 and for the first years thrived as a destination for shoppers and visitors. Since the late 1990s and early 2000s, the Landing has seen patronage continue to decline and retailers move out. LEGAL CONCERNS

Hughes acknowledged that legal issues have stalled development efforts since Curry took office in 2015, but not because the mayor is unwilling. “Obviously, the property in question is subject to ongoing litigation, but the mayor wanted to visualize what he believes would be the best and highest use for the property,” said Hughes. Since October the sides have engaged in a legal battle accusing each other of failing to uphold provisions of the 1985 lease agreement. JLI contends the Curry administration refuses to properly

maintain the property. The city said it believes Sleiman has essentially run the riverfront retail facility into disrepair, leading to vacant storefronts and a less welcoming environment for visitors. In addition to that conflict, the city sued JLI in 2015 for failing to close on a 2007 sale of an adjacent parking lot called the east parcel. City attorneys alleged JLI owed back property taxes and despite never taking ownership of the 1.6-acre site, continued to make money from parking fees. Sleiman in 2007 agreed to purchase the property for $4.7 million to expand the Landing onto the site and delivered the funds to the city, per the agreement. The sale was not closed, which the city claims is JLI’s fault. On June 8, the city filed a motion to “unwind” the unfinished parking lot transaction, while also stating explicitly that it still disagrees with JLI’s stance that the company doesn’t have to close on the sale and take possession of the property. In a statement Wednesday, General Counsel Jason Gabriel said, “it is now in the best interest of the City and its citizens that the City keep the legal title to the surface parking lot and remove JLI from possession.” “The original purpose of this litigation was to compel JLI to fulfill its now decade-old obligation to take legal title to the surface parking lot, which it has been occupying and operating since August of 2007, while also benefiting from all of the revenues generated by the parking operation. “It has become clear that JLI has no intention of fulfilling its contractual obligations to the

City, not only to take title to the parking lot, but also to operate the Landing as the first-class retail establishment the citizens of Jacksonville deserve,” his statement reads. Gabriel said the city’s action was justified and legally correct to demand JLI close on the sale. Sleiman on Wednesday contended the city never issued the deed to transfer the property title and in October 2014, without the title, “Sleiman Enterprises requested its money be returned.” In another statement Wednesday from Boyles, the company acknowledged and criticized the city’s latest action. “Less than three weeks before the court date, the city of Jacksonville did a complete 180 and reversed its position on the east parking lot lawsuit,” she said. “While Sleiman Enterprises is vindicated by the city’s position, we remain disappointed,” said Boyles, who indicated that litigation is expensive for both parties. “The City of Jacksonville intentionally used litigation as another roadblock against Sleiman Enterprises providing our community with a successful redevelopment of the Jacksonville Landing,” the statement reads. The parties were scheduled to appear for a three-day trial before 4th Judicial Circuit Judge Robert Dees beginning June 27. “However, recent events relating to the Landing since the lawsuit was filed now dictate that a different remedy is in the public’s best interest,” said Gabriel. DCAWTON@ JAXDAILYRECORD.COM @DAVIDCAWTON (904) 356-2466

Jacksonville Daily Record/Jacksonville Record & Observer

Thursday, June 14, 2018 • Page 11

Nearly all of Duval County’s industrial space is in the Westside, Northside and Southside. The Beaches and Downtown contain only a fraction of that space. Here is the breakdown:




Where Duval’s industrial space is located Beaches


File image

Amazon’s fullfillment center on the Northside near Jacksonville International Airport.


Duval County industrial space





In the first quarter of 2018, the average vacancy for industrial space in Duval County was 3.68 percent. The total inventory in the first quarter was 97,515,619 square feet, with 1,123,400 square feet under construction. Total inventory Beaches

Percent of total inventory

Total vacancy percent

1st quarter absorption (square feet)

Under construction (square feet)

166,496 0.17% 4.9% 39,299

Downtown 2,440,595


Average asking lease rate ($/SF/NNN*)








Northside 31,554,620 32.36%





Southside 21,599,400








Westside 41,754,508 42.82% 2.1%



H $ A C FA$T

• Better Loan Rates • Help is Available • Loans from $2,500 to $250,000 • Good or Bad Credit – Even Bankruptcy


$5.72 The average asking lease rate per square foot (NNN) for industrial space in the first quarter. *NNN is a triple net lease in which the tenant is responsible for paying all operating costs on the property. Source: CBRE Research, Q1 2018

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Thursday, June 21, 2018 The Melting Pot: The Diverse Cultures of Northeast Florida

Loans for: • Business • Payroll • Products • Equipment • Vehicles

Anything your business needs 24 Hours Immediate Response Call:


Tony’s Place at Houston and Lee streets, Jacksonville. Circa, 1938. Photo from JHS Archives

Discover Jacksonville’s Immigrant History! 6:30pm Reception and an exhibit featuring local immigrant stories. 7:00pm Presentation with Kathleen Cohen, Former Associate Dean, UNF Library; Giselle Carson, Attorney, Marks Gray Law Firm; and Jose Vega, Director, World Relief Jacksonville. The Jacksonville Historical Society’s Old St. Andrews Church 317 A. Philip Randolph Blvd. Free parking on-site. Information, 904 665-0064. “The Melting Pot” oral histories can be found at This project is sponsored in part by the Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs, the Florida Council of Arts and Culture and the State of Florida.


Page 12 • Thursday, June 14, 2018

Jacksonville Daily Record/Jacksonville Record & Observer


Here are the top 10 real estate sales in Northeast Florida, comprising Baker, Clay, Duval, Nassau and St. Johns counties. The sales were recorded June 4-8.

Special to the Daily Record

The Regency Plaza shopping center sold for $10 million.






9840 Atlantic Blvd., Jacksonville

U.S. 17 S., Green Cove Springs, Clay County

13162 Atlantic Blvd., Jacksonville

917 First St. S., Jacksonville Beach, Duval County

2720 Florida 16, St. Augustine, St. Johns County

Type: Condominium Size: 5,315 square feet Buyer: J.G. Ray Jr. and Sharon P. Ludecke Seller: Laurie Bauguss and Beth Angelo, successor Trustees of the Jerrold Rosenbaum Revocable Trust and Jerrold Rosenbaum Previous sale: $2,375,000 in 2010

Type: Sonny’s BBQ Size: 1.38 acres Buyer: PCM128 LLC Seller: KPJ Inc. Previous sale: $225,000 in 1997

Type: Commercial shopping center Size: 18.42 acres Buyer: Regency Plaza Partners LLC Seller: Live Oak Improvements LLC Previous sale: $6,500,000 in 2012

Type: Timberland Size: Unavailable Buyer: Florida Power & Light Co. Seller: EPC Holdings 931 LLC

Type: Tires Plus Size: 0.93 acres Buyer: Bridgestone Retail Operations LLC Seller: SMBC Leasing and Finance Inc.






249 N. Roscoe Blvd., Ponte Vedra Beach, St. Johns County

4001 County Road 208, St. Augustine, St. Johns County

930 Vale Orchard Lane, Jacksonville

1771 Airport Road, Jacksonville

535 Rutile Drive, Ponte Vedra Beach, St. Johns County

Type: Single-family Size: 0.92 acres Buyer: James P. and Teresa L. Bergeron Seller: James V. and Molly C. Wallerius Previous sale: $1,610,000 in 2014

Type: Mitigation bank Size: Unavailable Buyer: Sunnyside Mitigation LLC Seller: Sunnyside Farm of CR 208 LLC

Type: Single-family Size: 0.38 acres Buyer: Andrew Norwell Seller: Kenneth A. Powell Previous sale: $1,000,000 in 2016

Type: Commercial Size: 5.23 acres Buyer: Ganesh Holdings of JAX LLC Seller: Alvarez Investments Inc. Previous sale: $600,000 in 1989

Type: Single-family Size: 0.47 acres Buyer: Todd R. and Sharon F. Wilson Seller: Jack E. and Pamela E. Henry and The Pam Henry Revocable Trust


How Maple Street selects sites, arranges financing BY MARC MILOT MAPLE STREET BISCUIT COMPANY


Maple Street Biscuit Company was launched in November of 2012 with a mission of helping people, serving others and being a part of the community. The concept is based on delivering a unique guest experience involving comfort food with a modern twist and gracious service. This mission and its principles are the key to the brand’s success. As of today, there are 25 locations across the Southeast. All are company-owned except for one which is a charter store (Maple Street’s version of a franchise). Maple Street takes a disciplined approach to site selection that begins with identifying communities that can be served in a meaningful way, where the store itself becomes a destination and ultimately an integral part of a community’s identity. This requires finding sites that contain the attributes essential to delivering the Maple Street experience. Unique buildings that can be brought back to life while revitalizing the surrounding community are the best opportunities. Discipline in maximizing revenue per square foot is always a priority with most stores



ranging in size from 2,400 to 3,300 square feet. Stand-alone buildings or a multitenant plaza endcap with outside seating are most preferred. In-line sites are less common due to limited outside seating. Part of the modern twist concept involves a modern industrial/rustic aesthetic incorporated into the design of stores. This requires high ceilings with open double-spiral ductwork, brick and wooden accents and fixtures lit with Edison bulbs, open dining areas with large community tables and immaculately clean and polished concrete floors. Just as important as the site is the deal surrounding it. Taking the necessary time to negotiate the right deal is essential to growth as a sustainable business and forming a long-term partnership with the landlord. Among the biggest factors affecting site selection are occupancy costs, with rent and build-out costs carrying the most weight in all negotiations. This makes second-generation restaurant sites the most attractive. Once a deal is inked, the goal is

to optimize free-rent periods by minimizing build-out time and opening for business as soon as possible after receiving a Certificate of Occupancy. Concerning the financing of these stores, when a restaurant chain or franchisee is planning on adding several locations in a year, it is very time-consuming and unpredictable to go through an approval process to have each location approved for financing. As a result, a few banks have a specialty lending department set up specifically to meet the needs of growing, multiunit restaurateurs. Meredith Guess, local BBVA Compass commercial relationship manager, consulted with the bank’s food franchise lending experts to set up what is referred to as a “development line” to assist Maple Street with its projected growth. In establishing a development line, the bank looks at the number of new stores a company wants to open for the year and the average cost to develop each store. If the average cost to build-out a store is $1 million and the company wants to build 10 stores, the bank would approve a $10 million development line. This allows the company to not worry about the financing of each store, giving them the flexibility to be in negotiations at various stages with property owners on multiple locations at one time. Once a development budget is

Special to the Daily Record

Maple Street restaurants feature a modern industrial/rustic aesthetic.

established for a specific location, the bank sets up a subcommitment for that amount under the master commitment. Monthly draws are funded for the construction, and the subcommitment termed out after the location opens. Development lines generally are reserved for companies that already have 10-plus locations. With a number of locations already opened and producing cash flow, the bank is not as dependent on the next store being financed to have to carry its own financing weight. A company like Maple Street already has proved it is successful at site selection, so the bank is not concerned with approving the site, just the company’s overall strategy.

Despite the challenges associated with current real estate market realities, applying a disciplined approach to site selection and deal negotiation with the right financing structure is enabling Maple Street to continue to grow rapidly and bring the experience to more and more communities. MILOT IS THE VICE PRESIDENT OF SITE DEVELOPMENT FOR MAPLE STREET BISCUIT COMPANY. BRADSHAW IS CEO FOR BBVA COMPASS IN NORTHEAST FLORIDA AND IS PRESIDENTELECT OF THE NAIOP COMMERCIAL REAL ESTATE DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION NORTHEAST FLORIDA CHAPTER.

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Thursday, June 14, 2018 • Page 13

Page 14 • Thursday, June 14, 2018

Jacksonville Daily Record/Jacksonville Record & Observer


Photo by Monty Zickuhr

Edley’s Bar-B-Que wants to build a restaurant in this space at 5344 Ortega Blvd. The space is bordered on the west by Roosevelt Boulevard.

Edley’s Bar-B-Que zoning exception deferred Restaurant planned along Ortega Boulevard seeking alcohol sales faces opposition from neighbors over parking. BY SCOTT SAILER EDITORIAL RESEARCH DIRECTOR


The Jacksonville Planning Commission heard concerns last week from local residents, even when the zoning exception application for Edley’s Bar-B-Que at 5344 Ortega Blvd. was deferred. Neighborhood residents voiced concerns about the 20 angled parking spaces planned on the north side of the right of way of Ortega Boulevard adjacent to the restaurant. Residents say they believe that traffic on Ortega Boulevard is too heavy to allow cars to back out of angled parking. Neighborhood residents did not mention the exception requested for alcoholic beverage service. Restaurant developer VOTO LLC is party to a development agreement with the city to install

and maintain the 20 spaces along with providing a signalized crosswalk. City Council member Jim Love Love sponsored Ordinance 2018-265 to provide angled parking. The bill is in council committees. BEER, WINE AND GO-CARTS

Also, the commission approved a zoning exception allowing Autobahn Indoor Speedway and Events’ proposed restaurant to serve beer and wine. The indoor go-kart track at 6601 N. Executive Park Court has been operating in the 80,000-square-foot warehouse since 2014. The agent for the application, attorney Cyndy Trimmer, described Autobahn’s safety controls to ensure the safety of guests and employees. The operator will limit customers to two alcoholic beverages, have the ability to remotely turn off the go-karts and use a breatha-

These are the largest commercial building permits by price issued Tuesday by the city of Jacksonville. AMUSEMENT RECREATION ABPL Inc., 4500 Brentwood Ave., contractor is Honest Construction Inc., renovation, $18,000. CONDOMINIUMS Wolf Creek Condominium Association Inc., 13364 Beach Blvd., contractor is Florida Wall Concepts Inc., wall installation, $120,000. HOSPITAL, INSTITUTIONAL Mayo Clinic, 4500 San Pablo Road S., contractor is Auld & White Constructors LLC, 644 square feet, interior alteration, $133,878. OFFICE, BANK, PROFESSIONAL Rosemont Concourse Operating LLC, 5210 Belfort Road, No. 140, contractor is FLC Contracting LLC, 6,411 square feet, renovation, $206,135. RESTAURANTS Pita Pit, 8380 Baymeadows Road, No. 8, contractor is Suncoast Industrial & Construction Services Inc., 1,763 square feet, tenant build-out, $139,859.

lyzer if there is a concern. MINOR MODIFICATIONS

The commission also approved minor modifications to Planned Unit Developments: n Johnson & Johnson Vision, also known as Vistakon, at 7500 Centurion Parkway, can accommodate a proposed building expansion with the approved minor modification to reduce rear and side building setbacks from 100 to 30 and 25 feet. n Property owner Eastland Timber LLC revised its Planned Unit Development to include development standards, which were omitted from the original PUD description approved in 2014. The developer, The PARC Group, proposes townhomes on 12.38 acres opposite Atlantic Coast High School on RG Skinner Parkway. The development standards follow Chapter 656.414 of the zoning code with the exception of the maximum building height of 50 feet instead of 35 feet. n St. Vincent‘s Medical Center at 1 Shircliff Way was approved to revise the site plan for an eightstory, 189,915-square-foot Heart

and Vascular Pavilion on the site where Seton Hall and the Bryan Auditorium were demolished. The approval also allows a 16.4foot height increase to 123 feet. The new building will add 60 beds. n Land uses within the Westlake Development of Regional Impact and PUD zoning along Pritchard Road were approved to adjust locations within the development. The purpose of the exchange allows the development of a 45-acre parcel for a warehouse distribution center. The planning commission recommended rezoning approval for: n International General Development Inc., the owner of 9.92 acres at 2255 Dunn Ave., seeks to rezone a portion of an existing PUD to add 9,709 square feet to the development rights for a 36,744-square-foot adult congregate living facility. The ACLF use is allowed by right in the PUD. n RNMB Investments LLC, owner of 0.78 acres at 830 LaSalle St. in San Marco, seeks to rezone the property from Residential Medium Density-D to PUD. The proposed development will

ROOFING St. John the Baptist Catholic Church, 2400 Mayport Road, contractor is Stonebridge Construction Services LLC, roof replacement, $85,600. Steven Village LLC, 26 E. 59th St., contractor is The Roof Depot Inc., roof replacement, $23,000. Village Walk Apartments, 7651 Gate Parkway, contractor is Victory Construction Group Inc., roof replacement, $17,000. SIGNS 9471 Baymeadows Rd., 9471 Baymeadows Road, contractor is CNS Signs Inc., ground sign, $34,000. Walmart, Pickup, Lawn & Garden, Grocery, Vision Center, Home & Pharmacy, 10991 San Jose Blvd., contractor is Florida Sign Co., seven permits for wall signs, $13,200. Walmart, Pickup, Lawn & Garden, Grocery, Vision Center, Home & Pharmacy, Auto Center, Tire, Lube, 8808 Beach Blvd., contractor is Florida Sign Co., 15 permits for wall and monument signs, $12,250. Dedicated Senior Medical Center, A ChenMed Company, 9422 Arlington Expressway, contractor is Taylor Sign & Design Inc., two permits for wall signs, $4,890. Boost Mobile, 12123 Lem Turner Road, No. 6, contractor is CNS Signs Inc., two permits for wall signs, $4,400.

replace eight existing multifamily buildings comprising 19 dwelling units with seven new buildings containing 14 units. The existing buildings were damaged during recent storms. The proposed PUD includes waivers of road frontage and administrative deviations for setbacks and lot coverage. n Beemer & Associates XX LLC seeks to rezone The Shoppes at Durbin Crossing at 14965 Old St. Augustine Road from PUD to PUD to accommodate Legacy Ale Works, a craft brewery and taproom with outside service. Rezoning is required for food manufacturing, which is not an approved use in the current PUD that is based upon Commercial Community/General-1. The rezoning also covers zoning exceptions for outside service and the sale and service of alcoholic beverages for on and off premises consumption. Rezoning requests now go to the council Land Use and Zoning Committee. SSAILER@ JAXDAILYRECORD.COM (904) 356-2466

Metro PCS, 8635 Blanding Blvd., No. 203, contractor is Kenco Sign and Awning LLC, two permits for wall signs, $3,600. Victory Plaza, 6050 Moncrief Road, contractor is CNS Signs Inc., ground sign, $2,450. Caribbean Paradise Restaurant, 900 Dunn Ave., No. 14, contractor is CNS Signs Inc., wall sign, $2,400. Ulta Beauty, 4397 Roosevelt Blvd., contractor is Kenco Sign and Awning LLC, wall sign, $2,400. Dedicated Senior Medical Center, A ChenMed Company, 3059 Edgewood Ave. W., contractor is Shark Signs of NE FL Inc., wall sign, $2,300. Li Seafood, 2754 Cesery Blvd., No. 1, contractor is CNS Signs Inc., wall sign, $2,200. My Eye Dr, 13170 Atlantic Blvd., No. 53, contractor is CNS Signs Inc., wall sign, $2,100. Kone Cranes, 7060 103rd St., No. 123, contractor is CNS Signs Inc., wall sign, $2,100. Ground Sign, 4858 Town Center Parkway, contractor is Taylor Sign & Design Inc., three blank tenant panels, $2,000. Metro PCS, 7200 Normandy Blvd., No. 14, contractor is Kenco Sign and Awning LLC, wall sign, $1,500. STORES, MERCANTILE Sam’s Club, 10690 Beach Blvd., contractor is Place Services Inc., interior renovation, $35,000. Compiled by Scott Sailer

Jacksonville Daily Record/Jacksonville Record & Observer

Thursday, June 14, 2018 • Page 15


Cathy Chambers is senior vice president of strategy and business development for JAXUSA Partnership, the economic-development division of JAX Chamber. In May, the Florida Economic Development Council named her the Eunice Sullivan Economic Development Professional of the Year for her “outstanding dedication and commitment” to economic development in the state. Chambers led efforts to attract more than 13,000 jobs to Northeast Florida.

ABOUT CHAMBERS Title: Senior vice president, Strategy & Business Development Organization: JAXUSA Partnership, the economic development division of the JAX Chamber Age: 43 Education: Bachelor of Arts, Public Administration, Miami University, Ohio; MBA, Xavier University; Family: Sons Luke, 14, and Nathan, 12, and dog Kobe Hometown: St. Louis Hobbies: Travel, reading

I specialize in financial services and work directly with companies to showcase the region to attract jobs and capital investment. I also lead our regional strategic planning efforts and oversee our marketing, research and investor relations teams.



I stumbled into economic development through an internship while I was in college in Hamilton, Ohio. It’s been just over 23 years. I moved here 16 years ago and met this guy named Jerry Mallot (the retiring president of JAXUSA Partnership) and I’ve been at the Jacksonville chamber ever since. I love showcasing the region to someone who’s never been here or thinks they know Jacksonville but really don’t. Just watching them be amazed by what they didn’t know about Jacksonville is the best part. Everything’s driven by talent these days, so a lot of our research and time is spent really digging into a project and understanding what they’re looking for and demonstrating that we have the capacity to meet that need. The way we shine is by introducing them to companies that are successful. They may not be direct competitors but at least are similar so they can relate to their experiences. Although we promote the entire Northeast Florida region, Downtown is our showpiece. That experience of being able to bring people Downtown and have them feel the vibrancy that we all so want for Downtown will be a turning point for the whole region. There are some great people stepping forward to make investments Downtown that are already familiar with the area. When we hit the radar of investors from the outside, that’s the turning point. I have two teenage boys. My fun involves a lot of attending their lacrosse and basketball games in various gyms and fields across the region. We love to travel, so every year I take them on what I call an “epic trip.” We went to Breckenridge this year – I went skiing, they went snowboarding. We’ve gone on cruises, to New York, D.C. We’re working on the next plans. We have fun planning together.

Special to the Daily Record

I try to read, that’s my quiet time. I don’t have one favorite author. I have a book club. I read books about interesting people whose lives are nothing like mine. My parents live a couple of miles from me. They moved down from St. Louis about seven or eight years ago. That’s been great. I wanted to be a teacher at first – my mom was a teacher and guidance counselor – and then I moved on. When I went to college I wanted to go to law school. I could have found a very interesting law path, I’m sure. Law school would have been great, but looking at the hours and the lifestyle, this has been a lot more fun. What I love about this work is no two days are ever the same, and no two companies are ever the same, and no projects are ever the same. The variety and the people are what make it so special. So far, I’m having fun. As long as I’m having fun, I’m going to stick with this. KMATHIS@JAXDAILYRECORD.COM @MATHISKB (904) 356-2466

BUSINESS IN BRIEF City budget presentation honored: The city of Jacksonville was recognized with a Distinguished Budget Presentation Award for fiscal year 2017. The Government Finance Officers Association presented the award for preparing high-quality budget documents that adhere to nationally recognized guidelines and best practices on budgeting.

Grant to boost financial literacy: Florida State College at Jacksonville was awarded a $5,000 grant from State Farm for financial literacy education initiatives to support the needs of underrepresented students.

Students interviewed: Generation Jacksonville’s “Hire Day” brought together 15 information technology students with 12 area employers for interviews. The students, 18 to 24 years old, took part in an intensive 11-week “boot-camp-style” program that integrates technical training along with behavioral and mindset skills.

UNF keeps architect: TTV Architects Inc. was reselected by the University of North Florida as campus architect. Baptist opens surgical pavilion: Baptist Medical Center Beaches opened the Wilson Farrell Surgical Pavilion. The $32 million, 44,000-square-foot pavilion has iSuite operating rooms, 19 large pre- and post-op patient rooms, 12 recovery suites and a centralized sterilization center. New flights to Louisville, Norfolk: Allegiant Air now offers round-trip service from Jacksonville to Louisville, Kentucky, and Norfolk, Virginia. The routes will operate twice weekly. Visit for schedules.

New blood donor center: LifeSouth Community Blood Centers opened a donor center at Baptist Medical Center Jacksonville. Visit to locate donor centers and mobile drives. Hurricane help: To help Florida businesses prepare and recover from hurricanes and other disasters, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity launched The website provides information before, during and after a disaster and includes a planning toolkit, disaster updates and a business damage assessment survey. Compiled by Scott Sailer






Promotions, hirings and happenings for business people in Northeast Florida. Send items to

Mariette Brodeur joined The Community Foundation for Northeast Florida as gift planning officer. Brodeur is responsible for communication coordination and provides leadership to the foundation’s professional advisory councils. Warren E. Jones joined Riverside Avondale Preservation as executive director. Most recently he worked as a marketing and communications consultant at Inflection Point Communications. Kristen DeMarco joined JAXPORT as chief commercial officer responsible for leading international cargo marketing and sales along with tracking trends. Bobby Gatling joined Walker & Dunlop Inc. as senior vice president of investment sales. He is responsible for the origination and execution of investment sales for multifamily assets through Central and North Florida.

Annie Grogan joined the Clay County Chamber of Commerce as events manager. She is responsible for managing venues, sponsors and speaker presentations. Quang Pham, chairman and CEO of Jacksonville-based Espero BioPharma, is winner of the 2018 EmergPham ing Entrepreneur of the Year Award in Florida presented by Ernst & Young for innovation and creating new solutions.


Dream Finders Homes HQ sold: Dream Finders Homes sold its headquarters for $13.75 million to Capital Square, a national real estate and investment company. The sale/leaseback deal was brokered by NAI Hallmark. The 45,000-square-foot, threestory office building is at 4701 Philips Highway.

Page 16 • Thursday, June 14, 2018

Jacksonville Daily Record/Jacksonville Record & Observer

BE THE FIRST TO KNOW: BASCH REPORT Columnist Mark Basch tracks the growth and changes at the region’s public companies.

CAWTON REPORT Staff Writer David Cawton uncovers how government impacts business.


MATHIS REPORT Editor Karen Brune Mathis is always first to report new projects changing Jacksonville’s economy and landscape.


THE DATA PAGE Research Director Scott Sailer shows in snapshot graphs the economic data business leaders need to know.

YOU SHOULD KNOW Profiles of business leaders making a difference at work and in the community.

TOP 10 REAL ESTATE SALES The biggest real estate transactions over the past week in Duval County.

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BUSINESS CALENDAR Key upcoming events you won’t want to miss.

PEOPLE ON THE MOVE Top-level promotions and new hires at the region’s companies.


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06 14 18 jro