Monday, February 18, 2008

The Death of Springfield's Resurgence.

I find Jacksonville to be one continuous disappointment after another. Every time I think we as a city are making strides towards a livable urban core. The city manages somehow to trip it self up during one those strides and winds up falling further back than where it started.

Let's talk about Main St. traveling through Springfield. While most city's are concentrating on creating Liveable City's (Example: Here & Here) and Shared Spaces. Our glorious city continues to kill any chance of either a liveable city or shared spaces.

Springfield had been in the last few years enjoying a renaissance of it's once former glory. But recently things have come to a screeching halt. I am aware a lot of thing have contributed to this stoppage in growth. The economy, the realestate crash, deadbeat scumbag commercial property owners, etc.

But the nail in the coffin and what will for years will haunt the revitalization of Main St. is the current traffic flow construction.

It pretty much makes it impossible to walk or bike from the east side to the west side of Main St. while creating a freeway type environment for autos.

You can clearly see in the pictures above there are no breaks in the median for either vehicle or pedestrian traffic. There are no crosswalks painted. Nothing at all to allow for access to public buildings or retail shops on opposing sides of the street. Nothing to slow traffic down through these very long stretches solid median.

You will also notice on the left of the upper most picture. What should be marked as a bike line by Florida state law. Would force cyclist into traffic lanes at each intersection. Beautiful planning.

Rest assured that once construction is complete and the economy and other factors recover. Retail will continue to fail along this stretch of Main St. due to the lack of access for either pedestrian or vehicular traffic.

While I still have great hopes for Jacksonville and what it could be. I will forever morn the death of Springfield.

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