On September 26, 2014, the Groundwork Jacksonville Steering Committee (representing the historic Eastside and Springfield neighborhood areas in the Urban Core) received approval for the launch as a Groundwork Jacksonville Trust and was invited to join other Groundwork trusts through the Groundwork USA network.
Located in the project area (connecting to the Urban Core and Eastside and Springfield neighborhoods) is the S-Line Rail Trail. The S-Line Rail Trail (aptly named because of its shape of an “S”) is an urban greenway planned along an abandoned CSX railroad ROW, in and around an area rife with known and potential environmental contamination. The development of this trail will offer the surrounding citizens a safer transportation alternative to vehicle-dominated streets as well as a linear recreation corridor. The trail concept was born from the desire and need to offer residents and adjacent neighborhoods the opportunity for safe walking and biking activities, and access to parks, schools, work, and retail. The S-Line is only partially complete (with a 1.5 mile section of the trail open) with many gaps in links and infrastructure. In close proximity to the existing S-Line Rail Trail path is the Hogans Creek Greenway (a flagship project and high priority action item identified in the Groundwork Jacksonville Feasibility Study).
The further development of the S-Line Rail Trail offers connectivity to the Emerald Necklace (the larger Jacksonville greenway vision) linking the outlying areas of Jacksonville to the Urban Core enhancing economic development to these depressed areas, spurring revitalization efforts.
To develop a brownfields to green space demonstration project plan focused on the S-Line and Hogans Creek Greenway connection.
- Develop a plan of action through planned community workshops/ a two-day design charrette
- Recruiting community partners and volunteers to participate on project such as: UF Health Shands Hospital, City of Jacksonville (Public Works, Parks and Recreation), Florida Chapter of the ASLA, Jacksonville Chapter ASLA, CSX
- Develop outreach materials to inform community members about the program and invite their participation;
- Engage community members and partners to plan improvements related to S-Line and Hogans Creek Greenway connection and develop a concept plan;
- Develop concept plan through partnership with NPS- RTCA, Florida Chapter ASLA, Jacksonville Chapter ASLA;
- Work with City of Jacksonville to review concepts and plans;
- Document the activities of the brownfields to green space program with pictures and videos.
Groundwork Jacksonville, in partnership with the National Park Service Rivers, Trails and Con-servation Assistance (RTCA) Program, the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA) Florida Chapter, and the City of Jacksonville, invited the community to participate in a design charette to help develop a vision and concept plan for the S-Line Rail Trail, linking the communities of Historic Springfield and Eastside and to the Hogans Creek Greenway.
The design charette, facilitated by volunteers from ASLA, was held June 1-2 at the Karpeles Manuscript Library, located at 101 West 1st Street in Jacksonville, Florida. Over 60 members of the community, bicycle enthusiasts, and business members provided ideas, input and support for the concept.
ASLA will be developing final report over the next several weeks. Until then, we've uploaded materials, maps, power point presentations, and notes from the two-day engagement event.
The Time is Now- It’s Time to Implement
Jacksonville is notorious for planning. We have enough plans to build a tower. The Time is Now. It’s time to implement the short and long-term recommendations. Groundwork Jacksonville is poised to lead community-driven transformational change in the Springfield and Eastside neighborhoods. To do that, we are taking a different grass-roots approach to fulfilling our commitment to finishing the job, creating a culture of do, and restoring pride in our neighborhoods.
Role of the Steering Committee
- Serve a two-year term on a 15-member Steering Committee (Four seats to be reserved for COJ departments including Parks and Recreation, Public Works, Bike and Pedestrian Coordinator and Brownfield Redevelopment)
- Identify funding opportunities to implement short and long term goals
- Provide expert advisory to and manage project implementation on the S-Line
- Actively relay project progress and information to the community and interest groups
- Be available to meet on the first Tuesday of each month from 6:30 to 8:30 PM. The public will be welcome to attend and provide input to the committee’s decisions
Criteria for Steering Committee Membership
- Live or own a business in the Greater Jacksonville Area (Springfield and or Eastside residents and business owners will have priority).
- Have at least 5 years of practitioner experience in one of the above areas of expertise.
- Demonstrate at least one example of a transformational neighborhood project.
- Donate an annual fee of $50.00 to help off-set the administrative costs of managing the Steering Committee and to put some skin in the game. Springfield and Eastside residents are exempt from the annual fee.
- Must be dedicated to Changing Places and Changing Lives, not building your resume.
As a Steering Committee Member, Groundwork Jacksonville will:
- Reimburse up to half of your $50.00 annual fee when the pre-determined outcomes are met by the Steering Committee.
- Place your name and/or company name on the S-Line Webpage.
- Place your name and /or company name on the S-Line collateral marketing material.
- Engrave your name or company logo on two of the Groundworkers Brick / Paver--One for you to keep and one to be installed into the final capital investment to be determined by Steering Committee members.
Groundworkers for the S-Line Steering Committee
Steering Committee meetings are open the public. We meet on the 1st Tuesday of each month from 6:30 PM to 8:00 PM at Jack Meeks & Associates, 1354 N Laura St, Jacksonville
Join Groundworkers Every Second Saturday for a Group Ride on the S-Line
Meet at southern end of the S-Line, N. Myrtle Ave at 1314 W. Union St. at 10AM. The ride is 4.8 miles one-way and typically runs until noon.
Groundworkers for the S-Line
Advisory: Amy Ingles, COJ Bike and Pedestrian Coordinator
Advisory: Jill Enz, COJ Parks and Recreation