Northeast Florida Roundup
UNF to create and operate the Crowley Center for Transportation and Logistics
Meeting the Demand
The University of North Florida has received a $2.5-million endowment from Crowley Maritime to create and operate the Crowley Center for Transportation and Logistics.
With two deep-water ports, three major interstates, three major railroads and an international airport, Jacksonville has become one of the nation’s top logistics hubs. The center, which will be established in UNF’s Coggin College of Business, will support transportation logistics education, research and industry engagement.
Richard Buttimer, dean of UNF Coggin College of Business, says the endowment represents a continued partnership between the college and Crowley, which have a “very long history of supporting each other.”
Headquartered in Jacksonville since 2006, Crowley provides logistics and engineering support to commercial and government entities. Recently, the company has begun offering supply chain services to companies in the offshore wind and liquefied natural gas business.
In addition to providing funds for national research and increased research partnerships with industry leaders, Buttimer says the funding will allow the college to attract students from across the country.
“Crowley is saying we need to make sure the training our current employees need is available here in Jacksonville and the talent pipeline can be trained here by having world-class academic programs,” Buttimer says.
- Green Dragon, a Colorado-based cannabis grower and retailer, plans to open a 400,000-sq.-ft. growing facility in Putnam County and two stores in the Jacksonville area.
- Green Thumb Industries has started a $20-million renovation of the former Mark III conversion van plant in Ocala. The plant will be used to grow, process and package medical marijuana for distribution to the company’s 35 dispensaries across Florida.
- The Cultural Center at Ponte Vedra Beach has relocated to 3rd Street in Jacksonville Beach and changed its name to the First Coast Cultural Center. The non-profit organization offers arts and music programs in Atlantic Beach, Neptune Beach, Ponte Vedra Beach, St. Augustine and Nocatee as well as in St. Johns County schools.
- Jacksonville City Council has approved a $425,000 infrastructure grant for Boeing, which is expected to break ground on a 394,000-sq.- ft. facility this fall at Cecil Airport. The project, which will include a 270,000-sq.-ft. hangar and 100,000 square feet of office space, will bring 400 jobs.
- TD Bank plans to lease an additional 30,000 square feet at Deerwood Office Park in Jacksonville, adding 250 new customer service and operations jobs in the next two years.
- Bestbet is planning to build a gambling facility between I-95 and SR 207 in St. Johns County, the site of a former flea market. Plans call for a 40,673-sq.-ft. poker room and simulcast wagering complex.
- Alachua Conservation Trust has added 133 acres to its Santa Fe River Preserve, expanding the preserve to 1,067 acres. The added land, located in Bradford County, conserves 1.3 miles of riverfront.
- North Florida Land Trust has acquired nearly 28 acres in Jacksonville Beach. Located on the Intracoastal Waterway, the property is part of what is known as the Small Islands and is adjacent to the city-owned Cradle Creek Preserve. The land trust is in discussions with the city to incorporate the property into the preserves.
- Lake City Medical Center has named Jill Adams CEO of its 93-bed hospital. Adams was with Hamilton Medical Center before joining the hospital.
- Dr. Erick Schuck has been named chief medical officer for Ocala Health, part of HCA Healthcare. Ocala Health includes Ocala Regional Medical Center and West Marion Community Hospital among other medical facilities.
- Project YouthBuild received $1.35 million from the U.S. Department of Labor. The Alachua County non-profit helps young people learn occupational skills, earn their high school diploma and prepare for college and/or career opportunities.
- Southeastern Grocers is planning its first Winn-Dixie standalone liquor store. The company also announced plans for stores in St. Johns County in St. Augustine Shores and on Race Track Road.
- Pro footballer Tim Tebow has signed a multi-year contract with Clean Juice to promote its organic juice. Based in Charlotte, N.C., Clean Juice has 110 locations in 28 states. Another 65 stores are in the works, including one Tebow will open in Jacksonville.
- Revalize, a cloud software company, is locating its headquarters in Jacksonville, bringing 100 jobs in the next six months.
- Jacksonville-based rail company CSX has filed its third application with the Surface Transportation Board to purchase Massachusetts-based Pan Am Railways. CSX initially filed in February, and its second application in June was rejected because it lacked a marketing plan and information about how the acquisition would impact the transport of commodities to and from the Northeast. Pan Am Railways controls 1,200 miles of track in six New England states.
- The Jacksonville Transportation Authority has partnered with Goodyear Tire & Rubber to test airless tires on its autonomous shuttle. Goodyear is among the vendors JTA is considering for its driverless people mover program.
TRAVEL & TOURISM
- Jacksonville Aviation Authority has begun work on its $200-million concourse B project at Jacksonville International Airport.
- St. Johns County has voted to increase its bed tax from 4% to 5%.
Read more in Florida Trend's October issue.
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