Jacksonville working on revitalization and beautification projects for 2018

JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WNCT)–Jacksonville is heading toward some big changes in 2018. Everywhere you look around the city there’s new construction. As leaders continue to develop, they’re hopeful it will improve residents’ quality of life.

One of the city’s biggest goals is creating a caring community. That means improving the quality of life through beautification projects and revitalization projects.

Construction bids for the $1.2 million Riverwalk Marina were approved on January 2nd. It will include 17 new docks, a public access, 125 foot fishing pier and kayak launch. Several grants were obtained to fund it.

A three-year landscaping project will also begin along Western Blvd from Highway 17 to Carolina Forest. Last year, crews finished landscaping along the Jacksonville Parkway and Huff Drive.

The next focus will be on Northeast Creek Park and adding a second splash pad and restroom facilities there. By the end of the year, there will even be new playground equipment.

“The capital improvement projects are all designed to improve the quality of life for our citizens,” Dr. Richard Woodruff, city manager, said. “And to ensure that families want to stay here, especially when their loved ones are deployed on missions protecting our nation.”

Work is underway on a park and ride lot in the Commons that will provide 187 additional parking spaces.

Just across the road, the long-awaited amphitheater, which began construction in 2015, is nearly complete. It will cost around $350,000 and provide entertainment this summer.

“These are significant events that will benefit this community decades into the future,” Dr. Woodruff said.

Downtown, folks should expect updates to the 50-year-old sidewalks, new medians and new businesses opening. The mural project is also underway. The second mural, In Flanders Field, will be placed on the Youth Council building.

The bid for the Sturgeon City Environmental Education Center was awarded in 2017. Construction is now starting and is expected to be completed late-2018.

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