It’s a concept he’s seen in Europe for years, but one that hasn’t quite taken hold stateside, at least in the area. It’s one of the reasons JWB Real Estate Capital President Alexander Sifakis is putting forward a plan to build 18 studio apartments made of shipping containers in Downtown Jacksonville.

“There’s a lot of other projects going on Downtown that have already changed the landscape of Downtown over the last two years, and there’s been so much momentum over the last five years, and a lot of great things going on. And I think the next two or three years are going to be pretty transformational, so it’s just… hoping to be a small part of that,” Sifakis says.

Sifakis says he has a passion and interest in the revitalization of Downtown. While his company has worked in Brooklyn and Springfield, this is the first project in the core.

“Hoping to get some interest in Downtown Jax, and for other people to think outside the box,” he says.

“They’re really pushing more residential in the District, and this is a way to get some great density on a really small lot,” he says.

The plan is for each shipping container unit to be assembled off site, then stacked up on the property. The units would be 320 square feet- eight feet wide and 40 feet long- with a kitchen, washer/dryer, bathroom, walk-in closet and more. There is not any included parking.

The development is expected to cost around $1.2 million to $1.3 million, but Sifakis says they want to start rent around $550/month.

If given approval from the DDRB, Sifakis says they will seek a REV grant from the Downtown Investment Authority, which is essentially a rebate on future property tax payouts, relating to the impact a project has on the community. He hopes they can get all the needed approvals in 3-5 months, with construction taking another 1-3 months. That could mean project completion within eight months.

“Might be a little optimistic,” Sifakis says.

If this project goes well, Sifakis says he would look at bringing the concept to other plots in the City in the future.

– – – container apartments proposed for Downtown Jacksonville

Shipping container apartments proposed for Downtown Jacksonville
Photo Credit: via JWB Real Estate Capital

By: Stephanie Brown @SBrownReports
Published: April 24, 2019 3:16 PM EDT
Photo Credit: via JWB Real Estate Capital

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