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Downtown Investment Authority Reviewing Khan Shipyards Proposal

Peter Haden

Today Jacksonville’s Downtown Investment Authority had its first discussion about Jaguars owner Shad Khan’s shipyards proposal. Through his Iguana Investments company, Khan wants to revamp the 48-acre vacant lot on the banks of the St. Johns to include a practice field for the Jaguars, an office park, apartments, retail, hotels, hundreds of marina slips and mooring space for a retired warship, the U.S.S. Adams.

Though there have been several ill-fated attempts to redevelop the shipyards, Iguana Investments lawyer Paul Hardon told the DIA board this is a solid proposal and Khan can get it done.

“There is nothing in this term sheet that the city hasn’t offered to other folks who obviously didn’t put it in the endzone on this project, to use a football analogy,” Hardon said.

As part of the deal, the city of Jacksonville would be responsible for the environmental cleanup of the site, which could run up to $35 million.

The Downtown Investment Authority will set a public hearing next week to discuss the proposal further. That’s when they plan to vote on how to move forward.

Peter Haden is an award-winning investigative reporter and photographer currently working with The Center for Investigative Reporting. His stories are featured in media outlets around the world including NPR, CNN en Español, ECTV Ukraine, USA Today, Qatar Gulf Times, and the Malaysia Star.