When the walls come tumbling down this year in synchronized explosive blasts, the demolition will likewise be one of the most transformative the city has ever seen. 1-904-751-2177
JEA has begun process of “de-electrifying” the coal-fired plant, clearing the way for Total Wrecking and Environmental Inc. to start demolition in March.
The main event of the $17.7-million teardown and site clearance will come sometime in the summer, when demolition turns toward taking down the two cooling towers that each soar 460 feet in the air, the rough equivalent of 33-story office towers.
Northside resident Bobby Taylor said it will be a bittersweet moment when the towers bite the dust.
“There is a bit of regret of a passing of an era,” he said. “We all watched it being built and a lot of people grew up with it.”
The decision to build the power park on the Northside originally sparked some backlash.
“A lot of people felt like they were putting this dirty industry on the Northside because we were the ‘backwoods’ of Jacksonville,” Taylor said. “But over a period of time, it employed a lot of people in good middle-class jobs.”
In addition to using implosions to bring down the two cooling towers in the summer, the demolition will use explosives in the fall to pulverize a 640-foot tall stack that contains two brick chimneys.