When contractors demolished Alachua General Hospital in 2010, the Gainesville Community Redevelopment Agency, the University of Florida and the city of Gainesville worked to create a vision for the 16-acre property, which is located between the university’s main campus and downtown. The result was Innovation Square, a “live-work-play” development that emphasizes local research organizations, technology entrepreneurs and workers. Laying the groundwork for the emerging Innovation Square was the redevelopment of SW 9th Street and SW 3rd Avenue. The project transformed the two streets—which bisect the former hospital superblock—into pedestrian-friendly areas. In all, contractors installed approximately 1,470 linear ft of new streets, along with utility infrastructure and green space.

The project’s location atop the site of a former hospital that was itself surrounded by century-old infrastructure led to unforeseen challenges. As a result, Oelrich Construction encountered several unknown but active stormwater pipes. This and other unexpected hurdles required the contractor to redesign project elements while sticking to the original schedule.

SW 9th Street at Innovation Square

Gainesville, Fla.

Key Players
Gainesville Community Redevelopment Agency
Lead Design Firm JBrown Professional Group
Contractor Oelrich Construction Inc.
Civil Engineer Urban Design and Landscape Architecture