by: Hana Ashchi in Art Walk No Comments  

Downtown is gearing up with Valentine’s Day festivities and the fun all kicks off with the First Wednesday Art Walk on Feb. 4 from 5-9 p.m. The theme, “Art from the HeART,” is all about local artists, performers, foodies, family and friends getting together in the heart of Downtown. From our first-ever drag show, “The Art Walk Cabaret,” presented by Karissa Wade, live musical performances by Chaquis Maliq, hair and makeup tutorials by the Daniel James Salon, and a hugging booth featuring a Jacksonville Sharks football player, Art Walk is sure to spread the love to singles, couples and everyone in between.

Did we mention there will be beer and delicious eats, too?

via someecards.com

via someecards.com

Don’t give up on your New Year’s resolution’s yet! Be sure to check out one of Downtown’s newest additions, Anytime Fitness, where instructors will set up at the corner of Laura and Forsyth streets offering free spin classes every 30 minutes from 5-8 p.m.

via someecards.com

via someecards.com

by: Katherine Hardwick in Uncategorized No Comments  

If the name sounds a little boring, don’t be fooled, the Quarterly Operations Meeting gives the public face time with Downtown leaders, including DVI’s directors and board members, the Downtown Investment Authority, the City’s Parking Department, Friends of Hemming Park, the Mayor’s Office and more. DVI’s Operations Meetings are open to all. To be added to the mailing list, please email jennifer@downtownjacksonville.org.

If you’re as passionate about #DTJax as we are, you’re sure to enjoy the updates from the January 2015 meeting:

Update: Downtown Investment Authority – Aundra Wallace, CEO

Credit: Jacksonville.com

Credit: Jacksonville.com

2014 Successes: “We needed to crawl before we could walk.”

  • The DIA completed comprehensive Community Redevelopment Area (CRA) and Business Investment and Development (BID) plans, creating a roadmap with short-, mid- and long-term development goals for Downtown. (In review with City Council.)
  • The DIA’s $750,000 Retail Enhancement Plan to attract and retain more street-level retail passed City Council, and four projects will received funding pending approval at the January 28 DIA Board meeting:
    • A restaurant slated for 120 E. Forsyth St. (near the Florida Theatre)
    • Jersey Mike’s Subs, SunTrust Tower, 76 S. Laura St.
    • Jimmy Johns Gourmet Sandwiches, 201 N. Laura St.
    • Urban Grind Coffee Company, 45 W. Bay St.
  • The DIA has also invested in the Friends of Hemming Park for day-to-day park management; financed high-end restaurateurs to turn the long-vacant Bostwick Building into the Cowford Chophouse (to open in 2016); approved a REV Grant for 200 Riverside, to be located next to 220 Riverside and include a hotel; and advocated for the USS Adams to locate Downtown.
  • And, by May the results of a Convention Center Study done in partnership with Visit Jacksonville should be released.

by: Admin in Events No Comments  

ARMADA_FC_RGBIn less than two weeks, Downtown will be home to football – and futbol.

A week after the Super Bowl on Feb. 7, the newly formed Jacksonville Armada professional soccer team – its name a nod to Jacksonville’s naval history – will kick off its inaugural season with its first pre-season game at EverBank Field. With the exception of two NASL challenges at Jacksonville University in March and the regular season opener also at EverBank Field April 4, remaining home games will take place at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville.

A unique move to ensure the team will play Downtown, the City of Jacksonville and Suns Baseball agreed to convert the baseball diamond to an authentic soccer pitch to be known as “Community First Park.” Both the Suns and the Armada will share the field throughout their overlapping seasons. How will they do this? A removable pitcher’s mound will be removed in sections prior to each soccer match; turf will be placed over the baseball field; and Armada signage will be installed throughout the stadium, also featuring new camera stands.

by: Katherine Hardwick in Downtown Vision, Inc. No Comments  

Have you ever wondered, what exactly does DVI do in a year? Did you know we removed more than 22 tons of litter and provided 17,000 hospitality assists last year alone? We also brought 110,000 people Downtown for the monthly First Wednesday Art Walk and fielded 7,500 requests for information. But, these are just a few of the items on our “to do” list.

Hot off the “presses,” or rather, just uploaded (which sounds much less exciting), check out our latest Annual Report, which highlights accomplishments and financial information for fiscal year 2013-2014. Click here to download the PDF.

DVI_2014_Annual_Report_Web_Page_1

by: Katherine Hardwick in Downtown Vision, Inc. No Comments  
Terry Lorince, DVI executive director

Terry Lorince, DVI executive director

We couldn’t agree more with this piece from Jacksonville.com on our fearless leader:

Cheers: Terry Lorince deserves praise

Fri, Jan 23, 2015 @ 9:55 am

“As Downtown Vision Inc.’s longtime leader, Terry Lorince has made a true impact in our city’s ongoing quest to revive downtown.

Lorince has had a success in helping the city bring new businesses downtown. But she’s been vocal about the need to retain and enhance downtown’s existing businesses.

She has forthrightly addressed the issue of downtown homelessness by developing solid partnerships with area homeless advocates. But Lorince has also fiercely defended downtown against lazy critics who define it as merely a haven for the homeless.

All of these accomplishments and many more add up to a great legacy for Lorince. And it’s a legacy worth saluting now that Lorince has announced her resignation after 14 years with Downtown Vision Inc. Cheers to Lorince!”

During her 14-year tenure as executive director, Lorince led the organization in numerous accomplishments including; advocating for development and improvements in the core of Downtown, including the riverfront and historic preservation, making Downtown Jacksonville cleaner, safer and friendlier through a seven-day-a-week Ambassador service, marketing Downtown Jacksonville to developers, and individuals interested in living and working Downtown, leasing more than 50,000 sq ft of space to artists through the Off the Grid initiative, holding a co-working demonstration with the group that would go on to found CoWork Jax, and implementing award-winning special events and promotions such as the First Wednesday Art Walk, Downtown’s first Farmers Market, Eat Up Downtown, the Out to Lunch concert series, Movies in the Park, and the Historic Church Tour.

“I can’t think of anyone who has been able to do more with less to impact the core of our community,” said Oliver Barakat, DVI board member and Downtown Investment Authority board chair. “So much of her and her team’s work has been done behind the scenes to attract and keep businesses Downtown, and she’s the first one to share the credit.”

“Terry has been a driving force in Downtown Jacksonville’s revitalization, championing growth through Downtown’s ups and downs,” said DVI board chair Debbie Buckland. “We are indebted for her leadership and unyielding passion for the heart and soul of Jacksonville. She leaves us well positioned to carry on our work to create and support a vibrant Downtown community in this exciting time of progress.”

Read our full press release here.

by Zahni Thuzar, DVI Intern 

New Year; better you. If you read our previous post about nailing your New Year’s resolutions Down(town), you learned a bunch of ways to help stick to your plans. Alas, it’s about that time that most of us start jumping ship to join the other 60% ditching their New Year’s resolutions.

funny-new-years-resolutions

www.androidpit.com

Not this time!

The rise of young professional groups here in #DTJax has never been better, and they’re all great opportunities to help you get involved in the community, support the arts and/or gain a new hobby.

To save you some trouble, here’s just a few of the tons of organizations based here in Downtown Jacksonville:

The Contemporaries of MOCA

MOCA JaxYoung professionals between the ages of 21-40 are encouraged to connect with their artistic side and join The Contemporaries. The main goal of this organization is to encourage the cultural activity in this city and to bring awareness of the Museum to the public. With monthly happy hours occurring every fourth Friday of the month (from 5-8 p.m.), there are plenty of opportunities to socialize and connect with like minds. Every meet-up is held at a different location, which allows you to visit plenty of local venues all while discussing the newest trends in the contemporary lifestyle.

by: Admin in Events No Comments  

Whether you’re a 12-minute mile or six-minute mile, Downtown is the place to hit the pavement with your sneakers in 2015, hosting close to 20 runs and races through December 2015. (And our educated, we-host-thousands-of-events-on-our-website-calendar guess is there will be even more Downtown run events announced soon.)

From challenging 5Ks for beginners to tackling the Green Monster in the Gate River Run for experienced runners, Downtown delivers a breath-catching workout with breathtaking city views.

News4Jax.com

News4Jax.com

 

Check out this list of upcoming run events compiled by Jacksonville.com and DVI:

Jan. 31: Wolfson Children’s Challenge 1-Mile Fun Run, 30K Individual Run, 55K Ultra Relay, 55K Ultra Marathon, Downtown Jacksonville

Feb. 7: Fight for Air Climb, Downtown Jacksonville

Feb. 14: Donna 5K and Family Fun Run, Prime Osborn Convention Center