Tampa River Arts District

The Tampa River Arts District is home to many attractions including museums and theaters. A renaissance has taken place along the river. Tampa River Arts District residents live next door to new museums, the performing arts and vast open spaces. This section is planned to become a destination for art aficionados and those who appreciate culture and nature. The Tampa Museum of Art, the Glazer Children’s Museum, the large urban oasis of Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park, and the Tampa Riverwalk are signature amenities attracting residents, workers and visitors to the River Arts District in Tampa. Numerous nearby restaurants and shops, make a visit to the Tampa River Arts District a destination within a destination.

General Boundaries

Hillsborough River, I-275, Florida Avenue, Madison Street

District Gems

Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park:  It’s six acres of serenity. Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park into a lush, urban green space overlooking the scenic Hillsborough River and the University of Tampa. The park connects to the Tampa Riverwalk creating a picturesque pathway between art and culture.

Glazer Children’s Museum In 2010, the new 53,000-square-foot facility opened and now provides a learning environment built to inspire children and families and give them the opportunity to play and discover. Visitors can interact with each other as they cooperate and learn from the exhibits and from each other.

John F. Germany Public Library:  With a permanent art collection and rotating exhibits, as well as a variety of fun and educational programs, the John F. Germany Public Main Library is the flagship library of the Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Library System. Among its large collection of books, the John F. Germany Public Library offers classes on computer skills, lectures by authors, exhibits by local artists, and an annual calendar of activities to keep downtown residents engaged.

Jobsite Theatre is the official, professional resident theater company at Shimberg Playhouse at The Straz Center, serving the Tampa Bay area since 1998.

Patel Conservatory:  Learn a new instrument or pick up some new dance moves. You can even hone your skills on stage. The classes at the Patel Conservatory can make dreams come true within a 45,000-square-foot-facility attached to the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts. Many of the instructors are working professionals offering lessons in all disciplines of performing arts.

David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts:  Broadway’s best are sure to make a stop at the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts. Recognized as one of the top facilities of its type in the nation, it has five distinct theaters, presenting a wide variety of concerts, performances and events. The more than 750 curtain calls attracting more than 700,000 patrons annually make this place a venue attracting memorable shows and theater enthusiasts alike.

Tampa Museum of Art:  Home to fabulous art is a piece of artwork itself. The Tampa Museum of Art rests along the edge of Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park offering 66,000 square feet of exhibit space. Its shimmering aluminum exterior compliments the surrounding landscape against the water and features state-of-the-art galleries for a growing collection of classical and contemporary art. The Tampa Museum of Art is a destination for exciting traveling exhibits and shows. Make sure to view the museum in the evening as the wondrous LED light display creates a artistic wonder on the building's exterior.

Tampa Theatre:  The Tampa Theater has been a catapult for the imagination since 1926. More than 85 years old and still going strong, it is a symbol of Tampa’s rich history and its bright future. The Tampa Theatre continues to be a full-service theater with movie showings almost every day of the year and is one of America’s best-preserved examples of grand movie palace architecture. The Tampa Theatre is also a popular location for concerts, performances and film festivals.

Florida Museum of Photographic Arts (FMoPA):  A museum dedicated to exhibiting important photographic art as central to contemporary life and culture, FMoPA collects, preserves and exhibits historic and contemporary works by nationally and internationally known photographic artists. FMoPA also enriches the community by operating outreach programs to educate children and adults.
District Fun Facts

  • Evangelist Billy Graham got his start on the corner of Franklin and Fortune Streets in 1939.
  • Franklin Street is named for Benjamin Franklin and Zack Street is named for President Zachary Taylor.
  • Public art is found in the most unique places. The sidelight windows at the Residence Inn by Marriott are glass blocks of crystal imbedded with images of cultural importance.
  • Radio station WDAE was Florida’s first radio station and got its start on the corner of Franklin and Zack Streets.
  • The Straz Center for the Performing Arts is the largest performing arts center south of the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. It is also ranked in the top 10 by Pollstar Magazine for ticket sales in the United States for theaters of its size.
  • The Tampa Theatre is on the National Registry of Historic Places and listed by Life Magazine as one of the top 21 wonders of the world.