by: Admin in Historic Preservation 1 Comment  

At the Sept. 26 Jacksonville Historic Preservation Commission (JHPC) meeting, the Committee denied owners of the Bostwick Building—originally know as the Guaranty Trust and Savings Building—permission to demolish the structure. The Commission also instructed staff to prepare an application for landmark status. Landmark status would protect the Bostwick Building from demolition and make it eligible for various funding sources for rehabilitation.

The owners have since filed an appeal of this decision, which will be reviewed by City Council.

The JHPC held a meeting yesterday, during which they determined completeness of the landmark application and scheduled a public hearing to determine whether to recommend landmark status. The hearing will be held Tuesday, Nov. 13, at 3 p.m. in room 851 of the Ed Ball Building, 214 N. Hogan St.

Following this public hearing, City Council will hear the appeal of the demolition permit denial. If the Bostwick Building is recommended for landmark status, then a bill will be filed with City Council and the Land Use and Zoning (LUZ) Committee will conduct a public hearing on both the appeal and the Landmark status together.  If the JHPC does not recommend landmark status, then the LUZ will consider the appeal as a separate item.

Downtown Vision, Inc., supports the designation of the Bostwick Building as a local landmark and urges the City Council to uphold the JHPC’s denial of the demolition permit.



One Response to “Bostwick Building Update”

  • I’m torn.

    I believe in saving our cultural and architectural heritage, but sometimes we should just let some things go. There needs to be more common sense on the Historic Preservation Commission. This property will not be developed, and it will continue to deteriorate until it has to be condemned and then it will still end up being demolished. In the mean while, it will sit there driving down the value of adjacent properties. Restrictive regulations like this only prevent downtown Jacksonville from growing into a respectable town center.

    This is the Downtown Dilemma: Why would people want to live, work and play downtown when they have to walk past buildings that are decrepit and falling apart and have no real hope on the horizon of being restored or developed? Why would a company want to put a business next to these buildings? Why would a developer want to build next to these buildings?

    I think that unless a government is going to pay full market price for a property, they shouldn’t be allowed to stand in the way of progress based on the opinion of a biased group of people. Like I said, I do believe in saving our cultural and architectural heritage, but the Historic Preservation Commission is not doing that. The City gives them the authority to make decisions about what property owners can and cannot do with their property, but not the money to truly preserve these buildings. If the City ACTUALLY believes in saving these cultural and historical landmarks, they should put their money where their mouth is, or shut up and let property owners make effective use of their land, even if it is just to turn it into a parking lot.

    Instead, they just forcing property owners to hang on to old buildings until they rot, making downtown a dirty and unwelcoming place, and keeping downtown from thriving.

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