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Jacksonville Armory Renovation Bill Withdrawn By City Council

Kevin Meerschaert

It’s back to the drawing board for those wanting to redevelop the old Jacksonville Armory.A bill that would have leased the building to the Sons of Confederate Veterans was withdrawn by the city council Tuesday night.        

While the ordinance was approved in two committees last week, it appeared headed for defeat by the full council.

There also has been interest in using the armory as an arts center, but several council members, like Warren Jones, said neither group has shown how they would raise enough money to pay the armory’s renovation costs.

"You're talking about eight, to nine, ten million dollars. How you going to fund that building? A building you don't even own. Why would I even raise it?" he said. "Why would I commit to give that kind of money to a building that the organization doesn't own?"       

By withdrawing the bill it can be rewritten and reintroduced at any time. If it had been voted down similar legislation could not be reintroduced for a year.

You can follow Kevin Meerschaert on Twitter @KMeerschaertJax.

Kevin Meerschaert has left WJCT for new pursuits. He was the producer of First Coast Connect until October of 2018.