In The News | City Issues Permits for East San Marco Publix Retail Center

Article by: Karen Brune Mathis | Editor, Jax Daily Record

With site preparation well underway, Regency Centers Corp. now has the construction permits to build the East San Marco retail center that will be anchored by Publix Super Markets Inc.

The city issued four permits Feb. 9 for J. Raymond Construction Corp. to build the retail center at total construction costs of $9.7 million.

The development cost will be higher when other work, including interior build-out, is approved.

East San Marco is at 2039 Hendricks Ave. The city issued the horizontal work permit in December for the 3.25-acre site at southeast Atlantic Boulevard and Hendricks AvenueThe site plan for the Publix and shops at East San Marco.

Permits issued Feb. 9 show:

  • A two-story building totaling 76,588 square feet, topped by a 39,000-square-foot Publix on the top floor and parking on the bottom at a cost of $7 million.
  • A two-story retail building totaling 8,665 square feet at $1.25 million.
  • A one-story retail building of 9,951 square feet at $1.2 million.
  • A one-story 1,430-square-foot Publix Liquors store at $250,000.

Jacksonville-based Regency Centers Corp. applied for the construction permits Oct. 16.

The site also has surface parking.

Regency Senior Manager of Communications Eric Davidson said Feb. 4 the company will have a private groundbreaking ceremony.

“We are just planning to hold one later this month with quotes and photos with a select group because of COVID precautions,” he said.

Regency Centers and England-Thims & Miller Inc. submitted civil engineering plans to the city and St. Johns River Water Management District in May for the project.

The Publix project is about 20 years in the making.

In 2002, initial discussions surfaced about a Publix and mixed-use development on the site. In 2006, Regency Centers and The St. Joe Co. announced the project, including Publix and condominiums.

The project was delayed by several factors, including the recession and a residential development partner that pulled out of the deal in 2017.

The city approved previous designs that included apartments and town houses. In 2018, Regency Centers Chairman and CEO Martin E. “Hap” Stein Jr. said the project would continue but with just the shopping center.

There will be far fewer residences than approved in 2014. Other developers will build those.

Regency Centers Vice President and Jacksonville Market Officer Patrick McKinley said Nov. 11 construction on the Publix should be completed by summer 2022.

McKinley told the San Marco Merchants Association quarterly meeting via Zoom that Publix could open 30 to 60 days later after it outfits and prepares the space.

He said the six retail spaces adjacent to Publix would be ready for tenants to take over soon after.

McKinley said Regency was in discussions with a gym operator to lease one of the retail spaces.

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