"The mission of SPAR is to provide leadership to the residents of Historic Springfield to revitalize, preserve, and restore the community through its diverse programs"
Since 1974, we have facilitated positive change in the Springfield Historic District through a variety of roles and initiatives. Through the decades, these actions have taken different forms, from painstaking documentation to sweat soaked service. We're your neighborhood advocate. In 2014, SPAR is organized around five important themes:
Preservation — As Jacksonville's oldest existing neighborhood, circa 1869, Springfield contains a diverse catalogue of architectural styles and treasures. But it's not just the Victorian, Prairie and Colonial houses that make the neighborhood special, it's also the mature tree canopy and historic streetscapes that are worth protecting. Our Design and Review Committee provides expert opinion to residents, developers and city officials alike on aesthetic design issues in the historic district, which help preserve our neighborhood’s unique character. In addition, we host annual Home Tours which showcase the neighborhood’s eclectic nature and encourages new restorations in the community.
Quality-of-Life - By focusing on public safety, we have helped to create a more comfortable neighborhood environment. Our Block Captain program coordinates with residents and volunteers to tackle Neighborhood Clean Up projects, Neighborhood Watch, and works closely with local law enforcement. But Quality-of-Life is so much more than that. Improving our storied "Emerald Necklace" park system, and making our streets pedestrian and bicycle friendly also add value to our neighborhood fabric.
Commercial Revitalization — We have partnered with the Springfield Area Merchants and Business Association (SAMBA) to support our existing businesses and encourage new business, both big and small, to take root in the neighborhood. Now a Spar affiliate, SAMBA promotes neighborhood businesses and can help guide those interested in setting up shop in Springfield. In addition, we use the SPAR building not only as our home office, but also as an incubator for a variety of small businesses.
Civic Advocacy - Whether discreet or public, communication with elected representatives, state and federal agencies, and the City of Jacksonville is essential to ensure effective representation in issues impacting our neighborhood. Our Board and committee chairs make this a priority, and also spark residents to engage in the process when appropriate.
- Connecting - Through our e-newsletter, email updates, website, and social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter, we inform and connect residents with local happenings and each other. By hosting office hours, returning phone calls, and answering email inquiries, we connect with residents, media, and the general public by providing valuable information and guidance. We take the responsibility of being a neighborhood resource seriously.
Join us and help Historic Springfield become the neighborhood you want to see.