Boston – NEI General Contracting announced it has completed construction of a new, 6-story, 99,000sf senior housing community located at 650 Newnan Street North in the Cathedral district of downtown Jacksonville, Fla.
Developed by Blue Sky Communities, a real estate developer of affordable and workplace housing, and Aging Trust, a nonprofit serving the elderly population of Jacksonville, Ashley Square is designed for residents aged 62 and older. Ashley Square Apartments includes 120 affordable housing units and 71,000sf of parking garage with 160 spaces.
Replacing an existing 1.03-acre vacant parking lot, NEI excavated 10 feet and installed underground foundations, a structural exterior wall, and two post-tension slabs before erecting wood framing above for the apartment building. The first story is underground parking, and the second story is on-grade parking and the residential lobby.
Accessed via two elevators, the four upper floors feature 96 one-bedroom, 550sf units and 24 two-bedroom, 800sf units. All apartments are equipped with multiple energy efficient features, including a kitchen, bathroom(s), and storage closets. Property amenities include a community room with a pool table, card tables, and large screen TV; fitness center; conference room; internet room; and library.
“Ashley Square is the capstone on our impactful investment in the Cathedral District, and we are excited to welcome residents to their new home,” said Scott Macdonald, partner at Blue Sky Communities. “NEI’s extensive experience in building affordable housing was essential to our success.”
A very tight site with zero lay-down within the site during concrete work presented challenges from the start, according to NEI representatives. An adjacent property was so close NEI had to install a temporary retaining wall to ensure there was no cave-in of soil during excavation. Pouring concrete for the foundations had to take place at night and NEI secured the appropriate noise variance waivers for the work.
The project team also included PQH Group, architect; McVeigh & Mangum Engineering, Inc., mechanical, electrical, and plumbing (MEP) engineer; Taylor & White, civil engineer; and Jay Devine Landscape Architect, Inc., landscape architect.