River Watch at City Centre to Light Up Downtown

22 03 2007

SunTrust Tower/River Watch at City Centre Commercial Condominiums is bringing bright lights to the big city.

As part of an ongoing effort to jump start Downtown development, Kuhn Cos. spent approximately $75,000 to install nine horizontal strands, each 60 feet long, on the side of the SunTrust tower that faces the St. Johns River. The colored lights will be used to celebrate national holidays, events like Jacksonville Jaguar games and other community causes, said Kuhn Cos. President David Dix.

“We want to set this block off as the beginning of the Jacksonville renaissance,” Dix said.

The infrastructure for the fiber optic lighting system was added while the 18-year-old building was still under construction, but it was never used by the former owners. It wasn’t until after Kuhn acquired the building for $37 million in 2005 that Dix discovered the lighting infrastructure along with space beneath the building that could be extended into an underground tunnel to the vacant lot next the building on Laura Street. That space was intended to be a tunnel to a twin building that was never built.

The space will come in handy, Dix said, as he hopes to begin construction in September on the SunTrust’s sister building on what is now a parking lot, but will become 33 stories with hotel condominiums, retail and commercial space.

Kim Ellis, director of sales and marketing at Kuhn, said the lighting system is modeled after the Empire State Building’s system in New York City. Like the system on the Empire State Building, the lights on the SunTrust building will also serve as community outreach with lighting partners. Organizations can become lighting partners by submitting an application to Kuhn to request specific colors. Applicants will not be charged a fee.

Ellis said she hopes to have two to three different lighting schemes each month.

The lights were scheduled to be lit for the first time March 21 to commemorate Kuhn’s relationship with Colliers Dickinson, which is the agent in charge of the sales and leases at River Watch at City Centre.

Source: Jacksonville Business Journal



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