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Jacksonville City Councilman Wants To ‘Start From Scratch’ On Riverside Zoning Bill

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City of Jacksonville
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Jacksonville City Councilman Jim Love is withdrawing a Riverside zoning bill that caused an uproar last month.

Love said he plans to start a new bill from scratch to clarify and strengthen rules that govern the neighborhood’s historic overlay map.

“The idea is to make a better overlay with a little bit of an emphasis on respect for the residential communities,” he said.

He’s withdrawing the bill after people got scared the rules might restrict business growth.

“It was a little bit of a complicated bill and that’s why I think workshopping it will take a lot of the confusion out of it,” Love said. “There was a lot of misconception.”

He wants to include business owners and and residents in the writing of a future bill.

“If we start fresh and have everybody have an input on making the overlay better,” he said.

He says he’ll schedule the workshops after the new year.

He submitted the bill after City Council controversially approved a restaurant in Riverside in May.  

Many area residents and the Riverside Avondale Preservation protested because it’s in what’s called a “residential character” area.

Areas were designated by a neighborhood historic overlay map the Council approved in 2008. The intent was to protect the area’s character and historical integrity.

Neighbors said there wasn’t enough parking and it would be open too late. People in favor of the restaurant said they welcomed the additional eatery option.

Reporter Lindsey Kilbride can be reached at lkilbride@wjct.org, 904-358-6359 or on Twitter at @lindskilbride.