Elev8 Land Clearing & Demolition razed the 106-year-old Kartouche nightclub building Aug.1 Downtown at 618 W. Forsyth St.
Demolition started in the early morning after opening a hole in the west wall to remove the wood flooring. Wood beams would be extracted later from the rubble.
Elev8 owner, brothers Ben and Jon Pfotenhauer, gave the Kartouche sign to Fire Station No. 4 nearby at 639 W. Duval St. the home of the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Special Operations Team. According to the Jacksonville Fire and Rescue Department, the station is known as “The Lavilla Brickhouse,” a location in use by firefighters since 1924.
Pfotenhauer said previously a majority of the building will be recycled.
“There are lot of old wood timbers in that building that are getting recycled,” he said. Elev8 also will work to recycle the bricks.
Independence Recycling of Florida Inc. is working with Elev8 on the exterior demolition materials.
The unused three-story, 10,000-square-foot structure built in 1914 also had been known as the Eagle Laundry Building.
The Jacksonville Historical Society listed it as one of the structures on its annual list of the city’s most endangered buildings, although it was not designated as historic.
The city issued a permit July 23 for Elev8 to take down the structure at a cost of $49,500. Pfotenhauer said July 24 the project could take a week.
The immediate plans after demolition are to grade and sod the site, according to a letter included with the demolition permit application.
Previous filings show the site at West Forsyth and Broad streets is targeted for redevelopment for a Daily’s gas station and convenience store.
Law Building L.L.C., at Jacksonville-based Pine Street/RPS LLC, owns the nightclub property.
Mark Wainwright with Pine Street/RPS said July 10 the property is under contract but he is not allowed to disclose information about it.
A March JEA service availability request identified the site for First Coast Energy to develop a Daily’s gas station and convenience store.
The request identified the 1.4-acre block bounded by Bay, Broad, Forsyth and Jefferson streets.
In addition to the closed nightclub, a former bank drive-thru at 60 N. Broad St. built in 1976 is on the site. It is separately owned.
First Coast Energy said in March it didn’t have ownership of property in that area. It has not responded to emails seeking comment.
Daily’s also has developed its Dash fast-casual cafe concept that sells breakfast and lunch sandwiches, soups, salads, desserts and specialty coffee drinks.
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