Monday Morning Memo

Monday, February 6, 2017

Partnership Presents

New Website

Tampa Downtown Partnership is proud to announce the launch of the newly redesigned website, The new website features a clean design that showcases Tampa’s urban core to residents, workers, business owners, and visitors alike. The new design allows for users to easily access information based on their interests – live, work, play, or stay. Visitors to the website gain access to a variety of information including comprehensive reports, weekly newsletters (including Downtown After Hours), Downtown developments,  and travel options via the Interactive Map. Visit the new website today or view a pre-recorded two minute tour.

Debriefing Recap: The Arts are Alive

On Tuesday, January 31, Tampa Downtown Partnership hosted the Arts are Alive in Downtown Downtown Debriefing Series event focused on recently announced renovations and expansions that are being planned or are in progress by our downtown arts community.

Event speakers included John Bell, Tampa Theatre; Grant Martin, Tampa Bay History Center and Lorrin Shepard, Straz Center. Here are some of the highlights from the discussion:

Tampa Theatre

Restoration Plans include sealing the building envelope, modernizing building systems, restoration of the building’s interior including tiles, façades and carpeting, and improving patron comfort through the “Cush Your Tush” campaign to replace theatre seating. The Theatre has launched a fundraising campaign for the completion of the theatre restoration, building a preservation endowment and an artistic and educational program endowment. View the presentation.

Tampa Bay History Center

Expansion plans include the creation of The Touchton Map Library/Florida Center for Cartographic Education which will be the only cartographic center in the Southeastern United States, one of only nine in the nation, as well as creating a Treasure Seekers Gallery with exhibitry focused on Conquistadors, Pirates and Shipwrecks. The History Center has launched a fundraising campaign to raise $11 million for this effort. Half of those funds will be used to add on to the building, construct the new exhibit gallery and fund the map library. The other half will be used for the History Center’s operating endowment. View the presentation.

David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts

The Straz Center is in the vision planning process focusing on preparing for future generations, enhancing the patron experience, adding capacity, leveraging their river front location, providing community accessibility and helping to fulfill the City of Tampa’s InVision Plan. Future expansion plans could include an enhanced arrival experience, a Grand Terrace and Roof-top Terrace, an expanded lobby, a new Event Pavilion, an iconic sculpture on the Riverwalk and increased Riverwalk connectivity. View the presentation.

Development Forum

Mark your calendar! The 21st Annual Development Forum will take place on Friday, March 24 from 8am until noon at the Tampa Convention Center. The Development Forum is a half-day event that explores innovative ideas in urban development and serves as a catalyst for discussion and problem solving for major urban issues. Participants hear from public and private leaders, and industry specialists who offer insight into local, regional and national trends in their field of expertise. A full agenda and access to registration will open in the coming weeks.

Ping Pong Thursdays

Up for a game of ping-pong? Show us what you’ve got!  Tampa’s Downtown Guides will be available each Thursday from noon to 1pm in Lykes Gaslight Park to take on a game of ping-pong with anyone willing.  It’s FREE, so come out and have some fun. Make your friends jealous by taking a selfie as a player or a spectator and be sure to tag @tampasdowntown on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram – our Guides are very photogenic too!

Become Our Marketing Intern

Tampa Downtown Partnership is looking for an intern! We are seeking sophomores and juniors to fill our Marketing and Communication internship position for the Spring and/or Summer semesters. Candidates must be able to work 12 hours a week, Monday through Friday between 8am and 5pm. The Marketing and Communications Intern works directly with the Director of Marketing and Communications to oversee the organization’s marketing, communications, public relations, brand and social media programs. This is a paid position at $10/hour. To apply, please send a cover letter and resume to Kelsy Van Camp. View the full job description here.

Your Downtown Calendar

The following is just a sample of upcoming events in Downtown Tampa.  Visit the Downtown Tampa Events Calendar for a more comprehensive list.

Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Los Angeles Kings

Tuesday, February 7, begins 7:30pm
Amalie Arena
The Bolts battle with the the visiting Kings in the only meeting between the teams during the regular season. Grab a seat and Be the Thunder! For more information, go to Tampa Bay Lightning vs. Los Angeles Kings.

The Aliens by Annie Baker

Thursday, February 9 to Sunday, February 26
Stageworks Theatre
Two lost and disillusioned young men sit behind a Vermont coffee shop and discuss music and Bukowski. When a lonely high-school student arrives on the scene, they decide to teach him everything they know. A play with music about friendship, art, love and death. For more information, go to The Aliens by Annie Baker.

7th Annual Little Sweetheart’s Dance

Saturday, February 11, begins 6pm
Glazer Children’s Museum
Enjoy family-friendly dancing, light refreshments, craft stations, hit tunes from DJ Rich, and more! Make unforgettable memories together during the season that celebrates love. For more information, go to Little Sweetheart’s Dance.

On Stage at the Straz Center

Forbidden Broadway – Through Sunday, March 12
Wicked – Through Sunday, February 26
Patel Music Faculty Concert – Thursday, February 9, begins 7:30pm
Cinderella (La Cenerentola) – Friday, February 10 to Sunday, February 12
An Evening with Don Miggs and Special Guests – Saturday, February 11, begins 8pm
Rebecca Zapen – Live & Local – Saturday, February 11, 5:45pm to 7:45pm

On the Marquee at Tampa Theatre

OSCAR-Nominated Animated Short Films – Friday, February 10 to Saturday, February 25
OSCAR-Nominated Live Action Short Films – Friday, February 10 to Saturday, February 25
OSCAR-Nominated Documentary Short Films – Saturday, February 11 to Saturday, February 25
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas – Sunday, February 12, 3pm to 5pm

Doing Business in Downtown

Retail Spotlight: Veya Fit Spa

Veya Fit Spa has renovated its space and they’ve added to their menu of services. In addition to therapeutic massages and rejuvenating facials, Veya’s new manicurist offers relaxing nail care in the meditation room, and their spa shop is filled with locally-made organic washes, sprays, essential oils, soaps, and the “Veya” soy candle. Bring your dog to Veya on February 11 for “Love your Dog” massage class to teach you how to help with anxiety, digestive problems and much more for $30 per dog. Enjoy at “Parents Night Out” on February 25 from 6:30pm to 9:30pm! Drop off the kids at Veya for fun games, healthy snacks, and crafts. Ages 7 to 12. $30 (Prior registration required).

Marketplace News

Ulele On The Tampa Riverwalk has opened their outdoor bar! Enjoy open-air seating and waterfront views. If you’re strolling on the Riverwalk, request the special cup and take your drink along. 

Harbourside Animal Hospital is celebrating Pet Dental Health Month with a $50 discount off any dental cleaning/treatment and a free nail trim for those pets getting the dental cleaning/treatment. Great dental health and a healthy smile will help keep your pet’s entire body healthy.

Pop-Up Shop week in Downtown Tampa is February 6, 8 and 9. On Monday: Matilda Jane Clothing at The Attic Café, from 12pm to 2pm;  on Wednesday: India Hicks at 100 N. Tampa (Regions Bank Building), Ste 2140 from 10am to 2pm; and on Thursday, Erika Williner Designs at 100 N. Tampa, Suite 2140 from 11am to 3pm.

Bamboozle Tea Lounge is exhibiting the latest art of Tim Gibbons February 9 through March 9 in his solo show, “PAST PRESENT TENSE.” The artist’s work has been shown extensively throughout Florida, Texas and Oregon, including the TECO public art gallery, Gasparilla Arts Festival, STRAZ Theatre, Shimberg Theatre and Stageworks Theatre, and will be on sale.  

Startup Week is a five day conference held February 13 through the 17 that builds momentum and opportunity around entrepreneurship and this year is hosted at the Rialto Theatre. The title sponsor, Chase Bank, will host “Base Camp” to provide space for networking or getting work done in-between sessions. 

Tampa Bay WaVE Joins Channelside Bay Plaza

Tampa Bay WaVE, a local start-up incubator, is opening a second Tampa location inside Channelside Bay Plaza. WaVE’s downtown Tampa location has been filled to near capacity with entrepreneurs since it opened in March 2013. The second location, a 14,000-square-foot office in Channelside Bay Plaza, formerly occupied by the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce, will open on March 1 and they expect more than 30 workers to use the new incubator space within the first month, and that number could double within a year. WaVE moved its first incubator to 500 E. Kennedy Blvd., in 2015.
“Tampa Bay WaVE to Open Second Startup Incubator in Channelside Bay Plaza”Tampa Bay Times

SPP Fills Critical Leadership Roles

Strategic Property Partners, the real estate holding company controlled by Tampa Bay Lightning owner Jeff Vinik and Cascade Investment LLC, announced several key appointments, including a C-level hire last week. Tim Johnson joins as CFO from Kitson & Partners, Charlie Rollins joins as Senior Vice President and Director of Construction from Samuels & Associates, Bryan Moll joined in October as Executive Vice President and Direcotr of Development from JBG Cos. Other members of the executive team include Tampa natives Geoff Guidera, senior vice president and director of administration, and Jim Shimberg, executive director and general counsel.
“Meet The Vinik-Cascade Real Estate Team’s Latest Executive Hires”Tampa Bay Business Journal

Liberty Group Diversifies

During its first three decades in business, Tampa-based Liberty Group focused on buying select-service hotels — with flags like Hampton Inn, Courtyard by Marriott and Holiday Inn & Express — in primarily suburban locations. But over the past seven years, second-generation CEO Punit Shah has been methodically and strategically transforming the company into a more diversified enterprise. The company’s latest land acquisitions demonstrate how Liberty Group is evolving. Last year, the company spent more than $10 million to acquire tracts at 1155 E. Kennedy Blvd., 800 S. Harbour Island and at 319 Bayshore Blvd., all in downtown Tampa.
“Ch-ch-ch-ch-Changes”Business Observer


Development and Transportation

Aurora Ribbon Cutting

On February 1, Aurora, Downtown Tampa’s newest luxury apartment property, celebrated an honorary ribbon cutting with Mayor Bob Buckhorn and city officials. Richman Group broke ground on the 351-unit property in November of 2014 at the corner of Morgan and Whiting Streets in Downtown near the Amalie Arena. Aurora is among the 4,000 apartment units being, or recently, delivered to Downtown Tampa’s urban core. View our Interactive Map for a list of what’s developing in and around Tampa’s Downtown.

USF Unveils Med School Design

USF unveiled preliminary renderings of the new University of South Florida Health Morsani College of Medicine and the USF Health Heart Institute’s nearly $153 million facility. Skanska/HOK is the design/build team working on the structure, which will be one of the cornerstones of the $3 billion real estate development in downtown Tampa focusing on the Channelside area surrounding the Amalie Arena. USF Health officials estimate it will house about 2,275 faculty, staff and students when it opens in late 2019. In addition to classrooms and laboratories, it will include conference spaces, an auditorium, faculty offices and a clinical research and care unit.
“USF Unveils Downtown Tampa Med School Design”WUSF News

Transportation Study Suggests Cohesion

According to a study by the ENO Center Transportation, the Tampa Bay area ranks No. 77 out of the top 100 metro areas in the U.S. in terms of access to jobs by transit. Commissioned by the Tampa Bay Partnership, ENO found that transit is being handled poorly by county-based agencies. They suggest Tampa Bay have a regional metropolitan planning organization. Right now, such organizations are limited by county boundaries, and ENO recommends consolidating those into one. The group also recommends creating a regional transit authority with the ability to approve inter-local agreements in order to work across county lines.
“Study Suggests Merging Tampa Bay Area Transit Agencies”Tampa Bay Business Journal

Commuter Ferry Becoming Possibility

Hillsborough County is now considering adding commuter ferry routes from South County to Downtown Tampa, South County to Tampa International Airport/Westshore area and South County to MacDill Air Force base. With travel times of 13 minutes to MAFB and 25 minutes to downtown Tampa, passenger ferry service can provide congestion proof, reliable travel options to these two major employment destinations now and in the future, county leaders said. Three Tampa Bay specific designed fast passenger ferries would carry between 149 and 200 passengers. The ferries would operate every 15 minutes between 6 a.m. and 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. on workdays.
“New Commuter Ferry Routes Could Ease Congestion” ABC Action News

New Protected Cycle Track Coming Downtown

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) will be building the first-ever cycle track on a state roadway this year in Downtown Tampa. The cycle track, which will run along the north side of Jackson Street (State Road 60) from Ashley Drive to Nebraska Avenue, is considered to be a type of “urban shared-use path,” and provides designated space on the roadway for bicycles traveling in both directions. The cycle track will be ten feet wide and, unlike most conventional bike lanes, will physically separate bikes from motor vehicle traffic with a 4-foot raised island.
“New Protected Cycle Track Coming to Downtown Tampa”Bike Walk Tampa Bay

Member Corner

Calling All Photographers

The Florida Museum of Photographic Arts is announcing a call for entries for our 7th annual International Photography Competition. Photographers from all around the world are invited to submit and vote on submissions. More information about the call for entries and registration for submissions can be found here

MacDonld Training Center Creates Opportunites

Tampa Downtown Partnership’s newest member was recently featured on ABC Action News for their innovative way of providing skills and training to disabled adults while helping to pay for employees and certify them for the jobs they do. The Training Center is teaching the adults basic skills through refurbishing old electronics including identifying problems, fixing them, and installing software. Inside the workspace, the equality recycling program turns junk into recyclable material– 60-thousand pounds last year alone. View the full story here.

Straz Offers $25 Wicked Tickets

A day-of-performance lottery for a limited number of seats will be held for WICKED, which is returning to the Straz Center, Feb. 1-26. Two and one-half hours prior to each performance, people who present themselves at the Straz Center Ticket Sales Office will have their names placed in a lottery drum; thirty minutes later, names will be drawn for a limited number of orchestra seats at $25 each, cash only. This lottery is available only in-person at the ticket office, with a limit of two tickets per person. Lottery participants must have a valid photo ID when submitting their entry form and, if chosen, when purchasing tickets.

TGH Achieves Kidney Transplant Ranking

Tampa General Hospital’s (TGH) kidney transplant program received the highest possible rating from a national medical research foundation. TGH is the busiest transplant center in the state to receive this 5 Tier rating from the Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients (SRTR). Only 30 of the 269 adult kidney transplant programs in the country received the 5 Tier rating. The report analyzes the number of transplants during a one year period, frequency of transplants, and how many patients live with a functioning kidney one year after transplant. Assessments range from 1Tier (worst) to 5 Tier (best).

Hill Ward Henderson Welcomes New Associate

Ajay K. Malshe joins Hill Ward Henderson as an Associate in the firm’s Corporate and Tax Group. His practice encompasses a broad range of corporate transactional matters including venture capital and private equity, joint ventures, partnerships and securities. Prior to joining Hill Ward Henderson, Mr. Malshe was formerly in-house counsel with Citigroup’s Global Banking and Capital Markets Organization Group working with foreign issuers of U.S. securities.

Rampello Holds First Fundraiser

Rampello Downtown Partnership K-8 Magnet School is holding our first ever school-wide Yankee Candle Fundraiser, February 6th – February 17th.  40 % of each candle sale comes back to the Rampello technology fund. Log on to and use group code: 999965339. Thank you to our downtown partners for all of your support!

Around Town

Treasure Tampa Announces Grant Recipient

The University Area Community Development Corporation (CDC) will be the first to earn a grant of $30,000 as part of the Gobioff Foundation Treasure Tampa (T²) initiative. The University Area CDC won for its Art in the Park proposal, which will create three to five dynamic art installations in Harvest Hope Park with community residents taking the lead on the creation of the work facilitated by artists. View their website for more information.

City of Tampa Announces Parental Pay

Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn announced on February 1 that the City of Tampa will begin providing paid parental leave to full-time workers. The new parental leave policy will provide primary caregivers with eight (8) weeks and secondary caregivers with two (2) weeks of paid leave after the birth of a new child or placement with the employee of a child for adoption or foster care.  Full-time employees who have completed their first year with the City of Tampa will be eligible for the new benefit beginning on February 12, 2017.
“Mayor Buckhorn Announces Paid Family Leave For City Of Tampa Workers”Channel 10 News

Salvatore Territo Appointed as City Attorney

City of Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn promoted Sal Territo to City Attorney after Julia Mandell announced her resignation and next opportunity as an attorney at Carlton Fields. Sal Territo has had a long career working for and with local governments in Florida. He started his legal career with the City of Tampa in 1980 after graduating from the  Stetson University College of Law. He’s served  in various roles in the private sector, as well as Planning Commissioner and Chairman as well as Hearing Examiner in Lee County. For nearly ten years he was an adjunct professor at the University of South Florida. In 2005, Sal returned to the City of Tampa where he’s served as Chief Assistant City Attorney as the head of the transactional and administrative section of the Legal Department.

Suncoast Breaks Ground, Anticipates Growth

Suncoast Credit Union expects to add about 450 positions over the next five years, and has started work on a building to house those new workers. Suncoast broke ground February 2 for a three-story, 107,176-square-foot building at 6536 East Hillsborough Ave., on the credit union’s main campus in Tampa. The building is expected to be ready for occupancy in the second quarter of 2018.
“Tampa Bay’s Largest Credit Union Plans Hundreds Of New Jobs”Tampa Bay Business Journal