Join us in the Park Next Week
Join us while we set up shop for a week in Gaslight Square Park (corner of Madison and Franklin). We invite you to join us to talk about how you feel about Downtown. What do you love, what would you like to see more of, what could use some improvement? We want to hear from you, because at the end of the day we work to make your Downtown experience better. Our staff will be working in the park for a full week, and we also invite you to co-work with us with free WiFi available. Stay tuned for a more in-depth look at work schedules, discussion topics, and food options. Check out the event on Facebook!
Debrief the Partnership We’re switching it up this month- Come Debrief Us! – Tuesday April 24 from 7:30am-9am This month’s Downtown Debriefing will be held at Office in the Park in Gaslight Square Park with the opportunity to debrief us on your current downtown experience. Join us for coffee to share what you’d like to see Downtown and meet the faces behind the Tampa Downtown Partnership. Follow up throughout the week with lunchtime learning sessions. Check out the event on Facebook for schedule details!
Fourth Friday is Next Week
On the Fourth Friday of each month, Tampa’s arts and culture scene is celebrated with participating venues offering free or reduced admissions, special programming, and local restaurants offering specials to patrons with the iconic Fourth Friday wristband. Wristbands are available for free during their Fourth Friday hours, listed on the website at FourthFridayTPA.com. Getting from venue to venue is easy too with complimentary rides offered on the Streetcar – just show the motorperson your wristband! Using code FOURTHFRIDAY042018, first-time users get a free hour on Coast Bike Share beginning at 4pm. Check out this month’s featured venues and specials!
Get 50% off Tickets to this Straz Show
Robert Dubac’s newest Off-Broadway solo hit, The Book of Moron, has been described as one of the most “hilarious,” “intelligent” and “scorching” satirical attacks on idiocracy since Mark Twain. (And “idiocracy” isn’t even a word. How dumb is that?) The New York Times raves: “Riding shotgun with intelligence and absurdity, there’s laughter for all!” Save 50% on Robert Dubac’s The Book of Moron when you check-out using promo code HYSTERICAL.
Special Event Assistance
The Partnership’s Downtown Guides mission is to provide a safer, more accessible environment for people in downtown. The Guides provide for additional safety downtown by serving as the eyes and ears for the downtown community. They also offer directions, bicycle repair, assist stranded motorists with flat tires and dead car batteries, provide restaurant suggestions and even suggest parking options. Tampa’s Downtown Guides are available for hire to assist at special events by directing attendees, distributing event information and greeting customers. To apply for assistance contact Shaun Drinkard via email or at 813.221.3686 for more information.
The following is just a sample of upcoming events in Downtown Tampa. Visit the Downtown Tampa Events Calendar for a more comprehensive list. Going to one of the events? Snap a photo and tag #UrbanInsiderTPA
In the Time of the Butterflies Through Sunday, April 29 Stageworks Theatre
Based on Julia Álvarez’s popular novel, this is a fictionalized account of the story of the courageous Mirabal sisters from the Dominican Republic. With immersive video and animation dispersed across the stage, the piece paints a visual dreamscape of the interior lives of the activist sisters, the beauty and ferocity of the natural world, and the music heard on the radio of the time. For more information, go to In the Time of the Butterflies.
Do the Local Motion: Amble to Amalie Arena Friday, April 20, begins at Noon Poe Plaza
Lace up your shoes and get ready to walk! This event is a healthy and social way to enjoy your lunch hour and learn interesting tidbits about Tampa’s Downtown. This walk will feature Downtown Tampa’s mecca of sport and show: Amalie Arena. Get a first hand look at the home of the Tampa Bay Lightning. What better way to get into the playoff spirit? For more information, go to Do the Local Motion: Amble to Amalie Arena.
Fiesta By The Bay For Autism Friday, April 20, begins 6pm Glazer Children’s Museum
Party it up for a great cause in Downtown Tampa! The Fiesta will include a dinner buffet, access to the Glazer Children’s Museum exhibits, and plenty of fun. Plus, there will be activities for kids, dancing, a cash bar, and a silent auction! A portion of ticket sales and money raised from the auction will go to the Autism Services Fund. For more information, go to Fiesta By The Bay For Autism.
Tampa Bay Seafood & Music Festival Saturday, April 21 and Sunday, April 22 Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park
This will be an exciting weekend of delicious foods and live musical performances. Enjoy freshly-cooked seafood, meats, and vegetarian dishes, alcoholic and non-alcoholic drinks, and a diversity of sides and desserts. A talented lineup of performers will take the stage to provide live music. For more information, go to Tampa Bay Seafood & Music Festival.
This Week at Amalie Arena
98ROCKFEST – Friday, April 20, begins 6pm Tampa Bay Lightning vs. New Jersey Devils – Game 5 (if necessary) – Saturday, April 21, TBD
Taking the Stage at the Straz Center
Anthony Jeselnik: Funny Games – Thursday, April 19, begins 8pm Latin Nights – Thursday, April 19, begins 9pm The Florida Orchestra – Verdi’s Requiem – Friday, April 20, begins 8pm Best of Tampa Bay – Saturday, April 21, begins 7pm Megan Hilty – Sunday, April 22, begins 4pm
Developers are Here in Tampa
A forecast by Dodge Data & Analytics predicts that $13 billion will be spent on development in the Tampa Bay area — which includes Tampa, Clearwater and St. Petersburg — through 2022. That figure, for both new construction and renovations, includes apartments, condos and commercial and institutional buildings.
The most ambitious of the projects is Water Street Tampa, a $3 billion, multiuse development covering 16 blocks on and around the city’s downtown waterfront. The project is being underwritten by Strategic Property Partners, a joint venture of Cascade Investment, owned by Mr. Gates, the Microsoft co-founder, and Jeffrey N. Vinik, the owner of the Tampa Bay Lightning hockey team.
The 42-acre development, scheduled for completion in 2027, will comprise 17 buildings, including two new hotels and the renovation of a third, as well as restaurants and rooftop bars, one million square feet of cultural and retail space, 3,500 residential units and an “innovation hub.” It will also include two million square feet of office space in what will be the first new office towers here in almost 25 years, according to the developer. Learn more about the Tampa waterfront development. New York Times
Vinik speaks on HQ search, Mass Transit, Wage Growth
Just recovered from the fly and in buoyant spirits as the NHL playoffs approach, Jeff Vinik sat down with the Tampa Bay Business Journal for a wide-ranging interview on everything from Water Street to a potential Tampa Bay Rays stadium in Ybor City. Learn more about Jeff Vinik’s interview. Tampa Bay Business Journal
Popular Florida Past Time Shuffles into Tampa Heights
Long-time friends and neighbors Jennifer Montgomery and Danielle O’Connor are both members of the historic and popular St. Pete Shuffleboard Club and realized Tampa did not have anything like it, so they opened a similar concept and called it Shuffle: The Heights Shuffleboard Society.
“Shuffleboard is very Floridaesque,” Montgomery said. “Everyone that has grown up in Florida remembers the courts at the beach in St. Pete, so the identity is here.
“It’s low-entry, low impact, fairly cheap, easy to learn, and everyone can do it. There are a lot of shuffleboard enthusiasts that play the game in a strategic way, but you can also come play with your family without it being too serious.”
Located at 2612 N Tampa St, the 4,700 square foot indoor facility has four, blue regulation size shuffleboard courts and a “glorified concession stand” offering vegan options, pizza, french fries, salads, corn dogs, candy, chips, hot dogs with gourmet toppings, popcorn and a curated selection of local craft beer and wine ranging $3-$10. Learn more about how the Florida past time shuffles into Tampa Heights. Tampa Bay Times
Carnival Paradise Adding Tampa-to-Havana Cruises
Carnival Cruise Line announced Friday it will add 20 cruises from Tampa to Havana next year, bringing its total number of sailings to Cuba to 31.
The five-day voyages will leave Port Tampa Bay on Saturdays on the Carnival Paradise, which recently underwent a multi-million-dollar renovation, and include a call in Havana, plus stops in Key West, Cozumel or both.
Visits to Havana are subject to U.S. Treasury Department regulations that permit travel operators to take approved travelers to Cuba to engage in specified activities defined by the Office of Foreign Assets Control in the U.S. Department of Commerce. Learn more about the addition of more Tampa to Havana cruises. Tampa Bay Times
Tampa Bay Lightning Makes Viewer History
FOX Sports Sun, the regional television home of the Tampa Bay Lightning, announced the 2017-18 Lightning regular season finished as the highest rated ever in the 25-year history of the franchise on the network. The Lightning posted a 1.83 HH rating average (34,400 homes) over the course of 75 regular season games on FOX Sports Sun. The 1.83 HH surpassed the lockout shortened 2012-13 season (1.80 HH over 43 games) to finish as the highest rated Lightning season ever and marked a +20% increase for the Lightning in year-over-year viewership.
Additionally, January 2018 finished as the highest rated month of Lightning hockey ever (2.21 HH rating average) and live streaming Lightning hockey games on FOX Sports GO finished up +97% year-over-year. The top-five most watched games this season were Jan. 4 vs. Montreal (2.81 HH), Jan. 2 vs. Toronto (2.7 HH), April 7 vs. Carolina (2.64 HH), Feb. 28 vs. Buffalo (2.61 HH) and March 6 vs. Florida (2.56 HH). Lightning post most watched regular season in team history. Press Release/FOX Sports Florida
Tampa Developer Shares New Bayshore Tower Details
Pre-sales are underway for The Sanctuary at Alexandra Place, Bayshore Boulevard’s newest condo tower.
The Sanctuary, which is 17 stories and 15 units (including a two-story penthouse), will be priced from $2.3 million to $2.8 million, said Brian Taub, principal of Taub Entities. Smith & Associates has been hired to market the condos for sale.
The penthouse unit, which is just under 6,000 square feet, is listed at $4.8 million. The other units are 3,617 square feet. Every unit has an open floor plan, 80 feet of glass fronting Bayshore and is outfitted with Gaggenau appliances. Tampa developer shares more details on 17-story project. Tampa Bay Business Journal
New Foreclosure Filings Plunge in the Tampa Bay Area
New foreclosure filings have plunged in the Tampa Bay area. The number of foreclosure cases started in the first three months of this year was 844, nearly 40 percent fewer than at the same time last year, according to ATTOM Data Solutions.
Nationally, new foreclosure filings dropped 10 percent, the 11th consecutive quarter with a year-over-year decrease. An analysis showed that 45 percent of loans currently in some stage of foreclosure originated between 2004 and 2008.
“Less than half of all active foreclosures are now tied to loans originated during the last housing bubble… showing that the U.S. housing market has mostly cleared out the backlog of bad loans that triggered the housing and financial crisis nearly a decade ago,” said Daren Blomquist, ATTOM’s senior vice president. New foreclosure filings plunge in the Tampa Bay area. Tampa Bay Times
Extra Nonstop Flights to LA and Las Vegas at TIA Tampa Bay area residents looking to be high rollers or get a glimpse of movie stars just got two new nonstop flights today to Las Vegas and Los Angeles on Spirit Airlines at Tampa International Airport.
The nonstop service by Spirit Airlines (NYSE: SAVE) to Los Angeles International Airport and McCarran International Airport, which serves Las Vegas, further boosts Tampa International’s West Coast routes. The flights are part of a wider expansion nationwide and internationally by Spirit, which launched 13 new routes in the U.S. and several more in the Caribbean. More nonstop flights to LA and Las Vegas. Tampa Bay Business Journal
Tampa Bay Area Airports See Spring Break Surge The Tampa Bay area has had a big spring break if airport traffic is any indication.
March was the biggest month in the history of St. Pete-Clearwater International Airport, with 237,021 passengers, a 15 percent increase over the same month last year. Year-to-date, traffic at the Pinellas airport is up 13 percent.
Tampa International Airport, which just reported a 12.5 percent increase in passengers for February, has not released numbers for March, but airport spokeswoman Emily Nipps said in an email that “early indications are that we could see about a 10 percent year-over-year increase.” Tampa Bay area airports see increase in passengers. Tampa Bay Times
Owners of Oxford Exchange Expand to St. Pete
The owners of Tampa’s Oxford Exchange will open a restaurant on the Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital campus in St. Petersburg, hoping to bring the communal vibe that defines the Oxford Exchange to the health facility.
The Peabody — inspired by the iconic George Peabody Library that houses Johns Hopkins University’s research library in Baltimore — will occupy 4,000 square feet in the new research and education building. It will be open to the public, from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. weekends.
A grand opening is slated for Sept. 21.
The Peabody won’t be an exact replica of Oxford Exchange; it will feature more grab-and-go items and takeout options, and orders will be placed at the counter, said Allison Casper Adams, who co-owns Oxford Exchange with her brother, Blake Casper.
The Caspers also own Caspers Co., the largest McDonald’s franchisee in the state of Florida. Oxford Exchange owners to open restaurant in St. Pete.Tampa Bay Business Journal
Tampa Restaurateur Joins Tampa General Hospital Board
Tampa restaurateur Richard Gonzmart will join the governing board of Tampa General Hospital in October.
It’s the latest community-minded move by Gonzmart, who recently cut the ribbon at Jesuit High School’s Gonzmart Hall, a 32,000-square-foot, two-story facility. Gonzmart, president of the Columbia Restaurant Group, has donated $2.5 million to the $40 million capital campaign of the private all-male, Catholic school from which he graduated in 1971.
John Touchton, chairman of the hospital’s governing board, the Florida Health Sciences Center, said Gonzmart “truly understands the importance of quality and customer satisfaction, which are paramount to our organization.”
In 1905, Gonzmart’s great-grandfather launched the original Columbia Restaurant in Ybor City, which is still a family business but now has a total of 13 restaurants throughout Florida including seven Columbia Restaurants. Other Columbia Restaurant Group holdings include Ulele, Cha Cha Coconuts, Goody Goody, and Café Con Leche Ybor City. Richard Gonzmart joins Tampa General Hospital board. Tampa Bay Business Journal
Carlton Fields’ Jin Liu Admitted as Fellow of the American College of Mortgage Attorneys
Carlton Fields is pleased to announce that Tampa Shareholder Jin Liu has been admitted as a Fellow to the American College of Mortgage Attorneys (ACMA). Membership to the College is by invitation only upon nomination and election.
Founded in 1974, ACMA is an organization made up of more than 400 lawyers in North America, who are experts in mortgage law. ACMA’s highly skilled and experienced attorneys throughout the United States, U.S. territories and Canada, work to improve and reform laws and procedures affecting real estate secured transactions and to enhance the level of professional responsibility of lawyers practicing real estate finance.
Fellows have distinguished themselves as practitioners through their skills and practice experience, bar association activities, lecturing, authoring articles and program materials, participation in the legislative process, and writing briefs and arguing cases that are significant to mortgage transactions.
Liu is a real estate and commercial finance attorney. She represents CMBS lenders, loan servicers, and other financial institutions in CMBS and other loan transactions, loan sales, workouts, and disposition of real estate. She also represents Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs), national builders, resort developers, and other developers of large commercial and residential projects in purchase and sale of both improved and unimproved property, business planning and implementation, transaction structuring, equity investment, and a variety of financing transactions. Jin Liu admitted as fellow of the American College of Mortgage Attorneys. Tampa Bay Newswire
New Appointments for USF Consolidation Task Force
The University of South Florida System announced today the appointment of five new members of the USF Consolidation Planning, Study and Implementation Task Force.
As required by Florida law, USF Board of Trustees Chair Brian Lamb appoints two members to the task force, while USF St. Petersburg Campus Board Chair Stephanie Goforth, USF Sarasota-Manatee Campus Board Chair Byron Shinn and the USF Alumni Association each appoint one member.
The appointments include:
Anddrikk Frazier, managing partner of Integral Energy (by Lamb). A graduate of the USF College of Engineering, former USF men’s basketball player and founding member of the USF Black Leadership Network, Frazier has nearly 20 years of experience in the energy business.
Michael “Mike” Griffin, senior managing director for Savills Studley Occupier Services (by Lamb). Griffin earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from USF and served two terms as student body president. He is also a former chair of the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce.
Melissa Seixas, vice president, government and community relations for Duke Energy (by Goforth). Seixas earned a master’s degree in history from USF and served as co-chair of USFSP’s 50th anniversary celebration in 2015-16. She is currently board chair of the St. Pete Downtown Partnership.
Frederick “Rick” Piccolo, president and CEO of Sarasota Bradenton International Airport (by Shinn). Piccolo was recently appointed to serve on the USF Sarasota-Manatee Campus Board and he is a past chair of the Greater Sarasota Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors.
Kayla Rykiel is an Honors College student at USF pursuing a bachelor’s degree in biomedical sciences (by the USF Alumni Association). Rykiel is the founder of Partners in Health, a USF student organization, and serves as director of the TEDxUSF program. She’s been involved in research projects related to infectious diseases, drug development to prevent malaria and food insecurity among teenagers. New appointment announced for USF consolidation task force. Tampa Bay Newswire
Tampa turns blue and white as Lightning playoff fever strikes
The blue-and-white yard signs are flying off give-away tables. The car flags, too. And a big blue banner proclaiming “Go Bolts!” now hangs from the city’s Municipal Office Building downtown.
It’s Stanley Cup playoff time in Tampa.
The Lightning has sold out 148 straight games, including the playoffs, and counts nearly 15,000 season ticket holders among the 19,092 seats in Amalie Arena.
“Having a playoff team is good for Tampa and a great opportunity to show off the city’s booming downtown.” said Lynda Remund, chief executive officer and president of the Tampa Downtown Partnership.
“We’ve got Water Street, Armature Works and Julian B. Lane park and the Rays possibly coming to Ybor,” Remund said. “All four corners are coming together.” Lightning fever takes off in Tampa Bay. Tampa Bay Times
Armature Works Restaurant is a Proven Gem
Tampa restaurant Steelbach’s Florida-raised beef program could be a model for true farm-to-table dining
This new Southern-inflected chophouse, the only sit-down restaurant at Armature Works thus far, has its own herd of naturally raised beef, which lives its whole life cycle in the state of Florida. Steaks and chops are used at Steelbach, but the entirety of the animal is utilized there or at the Boca group of restaurants. Low carbon footprint, easy traceability, local and natural, no waste.
How are the steaks? Excellent. Imagine a 16-ounce boneless ribeye ($43) or a leaner 10-ounce flatiron ($32), marbled and juicy interior, charry at the edges from the 1,000-degree oak and mesquite open-fire grill. It is plated on a glossy wooden board inset with three round wells for different kinds of salt, a deeply sweet and caramelized shallot and a swipe of rich butter the meat’s spare yet elegant accompaniments. The beef’s flavor is intense, minerally, smoky, with the slightly more unctuous chew that grain feed imparts.
Steelbach offers five steaks that are specifically from their cattle, limited availability, as well as a handful of other meats — a Niman Ranch pork chop ($36) and duck, lamb chops and other beef cuts that don’t get a brand name. But here’s the thing about Steelbach: It is a perfectly lovely place to come if you eat no meat at all.
It’s a loud, slightly frenetic space — some of this is the buzzy newness of it, but some is design. It’s very open with lots of hard surfaces, and they’ve kept some atmospheric elements from when the space was the main office for Tampa Electric Company (exposed brick, big wood beams, three original fireplaces), repurposing a 100-year-old vault as a dramatic 1,000-bottle wine cellar. A big central bar and open kitchen mean there’s lots to ogle, but if you’ve got any low-talkers in your posse, forget about it. Armature Works restaurant takes off. Tampa Bay Times
Grand Opening of Watervue Grille
Harbour Island- The owners of Cafe Dufrain and Crybaby Cafe are excited to host the Grand Opening of their new venture, Watervue Grille. The new restaurant offers fresh Florida seafood, diverse flavors, creative cocktails, event space, relaxed waterfront patio seating, and some of the best views of Downtown Tampa on the Water.
The Grand Opening is Monday April 16th at 5pm. 700 Harbour Post Drive Harbour Island 813.642.7980
FResh artwork for Tampa Heights – Tampa Bay FReshFest
Over 20 streetart and mural artists descended on the Yellow Brick Row of Tampa Heights this past weekend.
“I thought this effort would be good for the neighborhood, the city and the arts. It was a big success and we have had nothing but positive feedback.” said organizer Eric Hornsby, known as Artist esh.
Robertson Billiards & Spa offered their walls for this ambitious project. Throughout the weekend, neighbors, shoppers and local residents meandered around absorbing the sounds of a live DJ and the vibrant energy of the community project. Artist esh was joined by several other established muralists and a few new artists grateful to have an opportunity to hone their craft and share their work.
The murals are located in Tampa Heights at Robertson Billiards & Spa, 1721 N. Franklin St., Tampa, Fl 33602 Tampa Bay FResh Fest
Tampa Fire Chief looking forward to retirement
After nearly 35 years with Tampa Fire Rescue, Chief Thomas Forward is retiring.
”May 18th, 2018,” Forward said, referring to his planned last day on the job. “It’s a lovely thing.”
Within his 35 years with the agency, Forward rose through the ranks. He was first appointed to lead the department under then-Mayor Pam Iorio.
Later, he was asked to stay on as chief when Mayor Bob Buckhorn took office.
“I’ve loved having him as chief,” Buckhorn said. “He’s been a great face of Tampa Fire Rescue. I think he’s done a great job.”
Forward said he’s proud of the department, and that diversity has been one of his biggest accomplishments there.
“From entry level, to supervisory level to mid-level management to administration you’ll see a very diverse workforce,” said Forward. Tampa Fire chief looking forward to retirement. Bay News 9
Pier 60 Sugar Sand Festival brings world-class sculptors to Clearwater Beach
Featuring 1,000 tons of sand and 11 world-class sculptors, the Pier 60 Sugar Sand Festival begins Friday on Clearwater Beach!
This 10-day celebration will transform America’s No. 1 Beach into an artistic paradise April 13-22.
Stroll through a 21,000 square-foot tent filled with sand-sculpted art crafted using Clearwater’s internationally famous sugar sand. This ticketed exhibit can only be seen once a year, and no two years are alike.
This year’s theme is Sea America: A Celebration of America’s Treasures. Admission to the sculpture exhibit will be $10 for adults, $6 students ages 6 to 17 years old, and $8 for those 55 and older. Children 5 and under get in free.
You can also head to the beach for tons of free activities for all ages, including a children’s play area, street performers, artisans, crafters, live entertainment, fireworks, sand sculpting classes, speed sand demonstrations and the master sand sculpting competition. Sugar Sand Festival arrives in Clearwater. ABC Action News
Monday Morning Memo –Monday Morning Memo is a weekly update of “insider downtown information” regarding developments, transportation, special opportunities and other useful information to help you make the most of downtown. Subscribe to receive this weekly newsletter.
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