Hard to find Public Space reclaimed : Dames Point Park in Metro Jacksonville
As most cities are transitioning from heavy industrial economies to knowledge base economies , once forgotten spaces are being reclaimed. The potential to make great community places in these spaces is so fertile with possibilities. Jacksonville is capitalizing on a secluded public space that’s 175 feet below one of the city’s most iconic structures: Dames Point Park.
Dames Point Park is located in north Jacksonville along the St. Johns River. It lies under the north approach to the Napoleon Bonaparte Broward Bridge, the longest cable-stayed bridge in the United States. In December 1988, the City of Jacksonville leased the 2.63-acre park site from the Jacksonville Transportation Authority for a thirty-year period. The park opened in June 1989 and received a major renovation in 1992-93. The area is part of the original South Berlin and Dames Point communities, whose existence dates back to the last quarter of the nineteenth century. In 2001, the Jacksonville Port Authority, whose land surrounds the park, built a new two-lane road linking the site with Dames Point Drive, thus insuring permanent access to the park.