Jacksonville – one city, two different worlds
Jacksonville is one of the most divided cities I have met in America. Formerly avoided by me with a big bow, today it has become my home. It wasn’t until I settled here that I realized that the city hides two different worlds.
Jacksonville is the largest city in the state of Florida, as well as the largest city in the US, with a population of 2,264.5 km². It’s impressive, right?
And when it comes to the estimated population, in 2020 it is over 903,889, which makes Jacksonville the 12th most populous city in the entire United States.
In simplest terms, it can be said that powerful Florida city is divided into the south (where I currently live) and the north. These two parts differ significantly in wealth and ethnicity.
The south is the good part of the city, and the north is the bad part, which is better to avoid from afar. To travel from south to north you need to travel about 35 miles by car.
Both parts of the city are separated by water and large bridges. Crossing the bridge I have the impression that I was entering another world. You will know the details below.
South of the city
In the south of the city there are beautiful estates, which arise like mushrooms after rain and break through their offer with better and better amenities. Personally, I live on one of them and the procedure for renting an apartment was described in the previous entry, the link can be found here.
A giant artificial lagoon called Crystal Lagoon at Beachwalk was also built in St Johns, at which settlements were built. Ultimately, there will be as many as 800 houses there.
It took thirty-seven million gallons of water to fill the lagoon for six months. The white-lined lagoon has taken on a natural turquoise shade that brings a touch of the Caribbean to northeastern Florida.
The shimmering waters are surrounded by a 100-meter white beach with all types of palm trees. On site, residents can also use the golf course, water park for dogs, floating bar and many other amenities .. Ah, living in such a place must be extraordinary.
A few miles away is St Johns Town Center, which is an exclusive outdoor mall. There are over 160 stores, including many luxurious and plenty of restaurants.
In the shopping town you can look into the Tesla showroom, shop at Louis Vuitton or Tiffany and for dinner you can go to the Cheesecake Factory.
St Johns Town Center is the heart of shopping and dining in Jacksonville.
The icing on the cake is Ponte Vedra Beach. It is here that the wealthiest people live, whose residences can be admired from the road and from the beach.
Ponte Vedra Beach is located in St. Johns, which is the richest county in Florida. This place is most associated with golf, because it is here that many famous golf competitions take place.
No wonder then that Ponte Vedra Beach has many world-famous golfers but also many businessmen, show business stars and athletes.
North of the city
Apparently Jacksonville is the most dangerous city in Florida, but I have only recently understood crime issues in America. Statistics are provided for the entire city, but over 90% of the crimes that make up it can take place in several neighborhoods.
That is why crime in Jacksonville occurs mainly (if not only) in the north of the city, which is located just off the border with the state of Georgia.
For the needs of the article, I drove my car through the worst districts in the north of the city. However, I didn’t take a picture everywhere for fear of getting the locals angry.
It is interesting that a lot of people live in shattered homes, but new cars stood under most of them.