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

Chris Flagg is a true Downtown champion. His firm, FLAGG Design Studio, LLC, specializes in community planning, urban design and campus master planning and is situated in the heart of Downtown. He chairs DVI’s board of directors and has served on multiple committees including the Executive, “Great Streets,” Advocacy and Green committees over the past six years. Chris also serves on the board of the Cultural Council of Greater Jacksonville and is a member of the Office of Economic Development’s Downtown Development Review Board. His professional involvement in Downtown development includes the redevelopment of Laura Street, lead designer on Friendship Fountain, the Laura Street Façade Improvement Grant Program, the Downtown Arts District Activation Guidebook and the redevelopment plans for the Southbank Riverwalk replacement.

If you think that’s an impressive list, you’re not alone. This summer, the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) elevated Chris Flagg—one of only 33 nominees—to the prestigious ASLA Council of Fellows for 2013. Fellowship is among the highest honors the ASLA bestows on members, and the designation is awarded in recognition of sustained, exceptional accomplishments based on works, leadership and management, knowledge and service. Flagg 
is the sole landscape architect in the state of Florida to receive the Fellowship this year. From ASLA:

“Christopher D. Flagg received his nomination, for Service, from the Florida Chapter. Over the course of his diverse career, he has acted at the local, state, and regional levels to make significant improvements to the quality of community life within Florida. Most specifically, his long-term affiliations with nonprofit organizations have promoted the development of Jacksonville—including its historic neighborhoods—as vibrant, livable, and visually appealing places.”

An expert in his field and a guiding voice at DVI, Chris is always pushing us to think bigger, create better and work harder to implement a vision to achieve Downtown’s full potential. Here are just a couple samples from Chris’s portfolio.

View Chris’s full portfolio here. His watercolor illustrations are currently on display at the Wells Fargo Building’s second floor art gallery.

by: Katherine Hardwick in Historic Preservation, Spotlight No Comments  

Looking to ditch the drab cubical farms with their drop ceilings and fluorescent lights? Ever dream of spending your days in creative workspaces like these? Maybe you remember our article on photographer Tiffany Manning working Downtown.

Flagg Design Studio: lots of natural light, exposed brick and wooden beams

Creative, quirky and customizable office space is in high demand these days. And luckily, Downtown you’ll find just such gems – often tucked away in historic buildings, and walkable to the river for moments of meditation, numerous dining options to keep your palate guessing, and cultural venues to spark that next big idea.

Take the Flagg Design Studio space, pictured right. Cradled in the heart of Downtown’s entertainment district, The Elbow, the studio capitalizes on the bones of the historic 1906 “Livery Building,” the same building that is home to Tiffany Manning Photography.

About the “Livery Building:

“This building is a pleasant reminder of the days when horses and carriages were the primary means of transportation in Jacksonville.  The McMurray Livery, Sale & Transfer Company was established in 1880 by Thomas McMurray, an Irishman.  He came to Jacksonville as a Union soldier in 1864, and he remained here as Chief Deputy U. S. Marshall, a post that he held for eleven years.  His original livery stable was on the corner of Forsyth and Newnan Streets, where he had a lively trade renting and selling carriages and horses.  This business burned in the 1901 Fire, and a new stable was rebuilt on the same site.  The livery business prospered with the post-Fire building boom in this city; and in 1905 McMurray Livery, Sale & Transfer Company purchased this present site for expansion purposes.  This building was constructed the following year, serving as a carriage showroom, blacksmith shop, and stable for horses.

Over the years, as the increasing number of automobiles in Jacksonville helped bring about the demise of the livery business, this property was sold and was variously used as a plumber’s shop, a printing company, a gas station, and a garage.  In 1972 architect William Morgan purchased the former livery stable and restored its facade to the original configuration. Its interior now houses professional offices and a parking garage.  The east wall of this structure marks the approximate location where Jacksonville founder Isaiah D. Hart built his log cabin when he came to Cow Ford in 1821.”

- Excerpt from Metro Jacksonville.

For more information on available space in the Livery Building, contact Bob Ascher, Guardian Commercial at 904-880-5656. If you’re looking to bring your office or retail business Downtown, we’d be happy to work with you to locate spaces to fit your needs or connect you with a local realtor. Contact Terry Lorince at 904.634.0303.

We also offer a number of resources on our website under “Doing Business,” such as: Demographics & Statistics, Economic Incentives and Legislation, Available Retail Space and Downtown Sustainability information.