Monday Morning Memo

Monday, July 8, 2019

Member Spotlight: MOSI

MOSI is a not-for-profit magnet for innovation in STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Math) education where they make a difference in people’s lives by making science real for people of all ages and backgrounds.

Education and outreach programs take a unique blend of fun and learning and spread it through the community. Summer Science Camps inspire students from preschool through high school. Several initiatives take MOSI’s telescopes and mobile lab out into schools and neighborhoods. And the Museums of All program – the first in Florida – allows low-income families to visit MOSI at a dramatically discounted price.

In April of 2016, MOSI launched its most exciting project yet: planning to relocate to a brand new, world-class science center in Downtown Tampa. MOSI’s relocation will create an iconic institution and a beacon for learning in Tampa’s cultural core.

During the estimated three to five years it will take to create MOSI’s new future-focused home, its current campus on East Fowler Avenue across from the University of South Florida will remain 100 percent amazing, with new upgrades, and new temporary special exhibitions.

Learn more about MOSI’s history and future here.

The Partnership is Hiring

Tampa Downtown Partnership is looking to fill the position of Public Space Operations Manager.

Position Overview

The Tampa Downtown Partnership is a private, not-for-profit 501(c)(6) organization.  It is a membership organization comprised of companies, organizations, and individuals with a common goal of advancing Downtown Tampa.

Through an annual contract with the City of Tampa, Tampa Downtown Partnership administers the Special Services District. In addition to the Tampa’s Downtown Guides and Clean Team, Tampa Downtown Partnership works to promote Downtown Through marketing, communication, community engagement, beautification, and placemaking.

The public space operations manager ensures the delivery of high-quality service through development and implementation of efficient operational systems by managing staff and financial resources related to beautification, maintenance, litter abatement, and ambassador services in Downtown Tampa.  The position supervises facilitation of landscaping and public space maintenance services, as well as supporting the execution of special projects related to public programming.  The operations manager reports directly to the Senior Director of Public Programming & Operations.


  • Manages all on-street services provided by the Special Services District (SSD), supplemental maintenance, litter removal, beautification, and special program support.
  • Oversees Tampa’s Downtown Guides and Clean Team’s and all related employee relations, to include annual performance reviews, uniforms, equipment purchases/maintenance, hiring, interviewing, training, etc.
  • Works directly with Clean Team and Downtown Guides’ project manager, supervisor, and team leaders to determine priorities, identify and assign project teams, develop assessment and evaluation tools, establish procedures, and oversee planning and implementation. Ensure meaningful goal setting, measurable outcomes and accountability, and deliverables.
  • Negotiates and administers contracts with outside vendors for maximum service and cost effectiveness.
  • Oversees development and implementation of data collection and evaluation tools, and performance measurements to ensure effective delivery of services to all constituents.
  • Assists in convening property managers, public safety stakeholders (i.e. local law enforcement, security providers, emergency preparedness agencies, business owners, etc.) to provide effective communication channels and problem-solving opportunities.
  • Serves as staff liaison to the Special Services District Advisory Committee, facilitating monthly meetings, along with committee chairs, and represents a variety of key downtown stakeholders.
  • Manages Downtown Security Network contact list and works closely with event coordinator for Downtown Security Series programming.
  • Creates and enhances partnerships as liaison with City of Tampa senior staff levels to ensure maximum attention to maintenance within the SSD area.
  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Required Skills and Competencies

  • Excellent written and verbal communications skills, including demonstrated ability to articulate the organization’s philosophy and position to a wide range of audiences. Must be able to document incidents appropriately and timely.
  • Demonstrated ability to work with, and foster partnerships in both the public and private sectors.
  • Demonstrated fiscal and business management skills to develop, manage and track budgets and contracts, handle multiple priorities and execute projects for timely completion.
  • Demonstrated ability to manage and motivate employees; high degree of excellent judgement skills, and problem-solving ability required. Hands-on leadership and pro-active approach are essential.
  • Experienced and knowledgeable in Human Resource applications, policies and procedures.
  • Must be able to interact with all levels of staff, Board members, business and community leaders, and stakeholders.
  • Thorough and excellent attention to detail.
  • Works well under pressure.
  • Ability to work occasional early morning, evening and/or weekend hours.
  • Ability to lift heavy objects.
  • Able to work outdoors.
  • Ability to walk long distances.

Preferred Skills and Experience

  • Familiar with operations of Business Improvement Districts (BID).
  • Familiarity and connections to current industry trends related to clean and safe programming and some urban development.

Required Education and Experience

  • Minimum of five years management experience in service industry, construction management, municipal government, business improvement districts, or convention and hospitality services; preferably in a special services district, urban partnership or closely-related environment.
  • Comprehensive understanding of Downtown Tampa and acquainted with significant stakeholders.
  • Proficient in Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint)

To apply for the position, please email a cover letter and resume to Shaun Drinkard. Please, no phone calls.

Retail 101: Hear from Urban Retail Experts

Are you a retailer who is a new small businesses or an entrepreneur looking to start a small retail business? If you are interested in becoming a vendor during Winter Village at Curtis Hixon Park’s upcoming season, the Tampa Downtown Partnership invites you to join for a free Retail 101 session on July 9th from 10am to 11am at Tampa City Center, 2nd floor, Room #225.

Local small business experts will share lessons learned, best practices, and their experiences with making the most of their time as a vendor at the Shops of Winter Village.

Speakers include:

  • Steve McGlocklin – Whatever Pops
  • Danielle Evans – Don Me Now
  • Ben and Lisa Prakobkit – The Modern Paws

Attendees will also hear from a representative at the Small Business Resources Center and Julia Mandell of GrayRobinson, P.A.

This is a free and open event. Pre-registration is required as space is limited. Register here. Let others know you are attending by replying to our Facebook event!

Donuts & the Download on Downtown: How to Engage

Join us for the Tampa Downtown Partnership’s quarterly Donuts & the Download on Downtown! This morning event will highlight what’s happening in Tampa’s Downtown and ways to engage with the Partnership’s programs and initiatives.

Get the download on the benefits of membership, networking opportunities, transportation initiatives, marketing efforts, new developments, public art, crime prevention, beautification efforts, and much more. Complimentary pastries and coffee will be served.

This event is held at the Partnership’s office at 400 N. Ashley Drive, Suite 2125, Tampa, FL, 33602 on July 31 from 8:30am – 9:30am. For more information and to register, click here.

An Inside Look at the $45M Hampton Inn/Home2Suites

From the moment Punit Shah laid eyes on the vacant corner of Meridian Avenue and Kennedy Boulevard, he saw a hotel on the site.

Shah’s vision, a 10-story dual-flag Hampton Inn/Home2Suites Hotel with a street-level Starbucks and rooftop pool, is now a reality in downtown Tampa’s Channel district.

The $45 million hotel should open in mid-July, Shah, the CEO of Liberty Group, said Wednesday. Liberty Group owns and operates hotels in 10 states.

Of the 213 hotel rooms, 116 are Hampton, and 97 are Home2Suites. But both are operated by Shah — as is the Starbucks, which is a licensed store, not a corporate store. There’s also a six-story, 192-space parking garage on the property; the pool deck sits atop the parking garage.

Hampton room rates will vary from $190 to $400, depending on the season and demand. The Home2Suites will range from the $300s to $400s. It will likely be a year before the hotel is profitable, which Shah said is typical of the properties across his portfolio.

“There’s one general manager, one front desk, one pool, one amenity level, but I can leverage the resources of two brands,” Shah said. “They’re both Hilton, but one targets a transient traveler with Hampton Inn, and the other is an extended-stay traveler with the Home2. This only works in really urban, dense locations, because it’s complicated and very expensive to do.”

The .95-acre site was originally zoned for an apartment tower. But between cruise passengers, downtown business travelers and the surrounding neighborhood, Shah saw it as an obvious hotel play.

“A lot of the Channel district apartments aren’t big enough to accommodate guest rooms, so when you have family in town, this is a great alternative,” he said. “I always envisioned the Starbucks on that corner for the neighborhood. It’s really not an amenity for the hotel, it’s for the neighborhood. It’s one more area for people to get out of their apartments.”

In Shah’s view, the hotel is as an eastern “bookend” to downtown Tampa; the western bookend is an Aloft hotel that was another of Shah’s projects.

“I always thought this would be a great location, plus I knew what was happening with Water Street,” Shah said.

“First look: Inside the $45 million dual-flag hotel opening soon in downtown Tampa’s Channel district”Tampa Bay Business Journal (subscription required)

Farley White Reaffirms CBRE at Fifth Third Center

Farley White Interests has reaffirmed its commitment to commercial real estate brokerage firm CBRE Group as the leasing agent for its 19-story Fifth Third Center office building in downtown Tampa.

The Boston-based landlord’s decision to stick with CBRE, which had leased the property since Farley White’s $52.5 million purchase in October 2017, comes amid a more than $3 million renovation effort.

The 281,187-square-foot building, at 201 E. Kennedy Blvd., is roughly 84% occupied.

“This property is literally in the heart of our downtown core, blocks away from the University of Tampa, the Riverwalk and anchors the most active intersection and one of the largest green spaces our downtown has to offer,” says CBRE Senior Vice President KC Tenukas, who together with the firm’s Matt Watson will handle leasing efforts going forward.

For much of the past year, Farley White has been improving the building’s common areas, lobby, parking garage, elevators, stairways and heating, ventilation and air conditioning systems. It has also added a new fitness center within the building.

Thus far this year, CBRE has leased or renewed commitments for 22,000 square feet in Fifth Third Center, where the primary tenants are Fifth Third Bank, Skoda Minotti and law firm Marshall, Dennehey Warner Coleman & Goggin, among others.

John Power, a Farley White principal, says the firm stuck with CBRE because of its “global reach and marketwide impact” as well as the business relationships it has forged and maintains.

“In today’s real estate world, it’s all about providing your customers with reasons to stay in your buildings or to come to them,” says Power.

“Farley White reaffirms CBRE at Fifth Third Center”Business Observer

Demolition to Begin on CapTrust Building in Tampa’s Downtown

The developers of the 53-story Riverwalk Place will begin external demolition of the CapTrust building, a process expected to take more than a month and affect traffic patterns in downtown Tampa.

The developers — a partnership of Tampa’s Feldman Equities and West Palm Beach-based Two Roads Development — said on July 2 that they will begin external demolition on July 8. Internal demolition of the building has been under way since at least early May.

On July 5, the developers said via a spokesman that the demolition would not begin July 8.

“The contractor is working on details with the city on how and when to detour traffic around Ashley Drive to make sure everything is safe,” the spokesman wrote in an email. “They want to ensure the process is done right, so it may take some more time before starting.”

The 53-story condo tower is proposed on the Tampa Riverwalk, at the intersection of Ashley Drive and Brorein Street.

Here’s how the demolition — when it does begin — will affect traffic in downtown Tampa: “Traffic going south on Ashley Drive will be diverted onto Whiting Street going east, then to Tampa Street to proceed south,” the developers said in a statement. “Northbound Ashley Drive will remain open. Pedestrian traffic on the Riverwalk will be similarly diverted during weekdays but opened nights and weekends when safety allows.”

The developers did not say when vertical construction of the tower, which is set to include 288 high-end condominiums on top of parking and retail space, might begin. The tower has $90 million worth of condos reserved, the development team said in a May 2 Instagram post. The units are priced from the $600,000s to $2 million.

In condominium development, reservations require a refundable deposit; for luxury condos, the deposit is usually around $25,000. In a typical deal, construction begins once the developers convert those reservations to contracts and buyers put down a larger, nonrefundable amount of money.

The timeline for Riverwalk Place is well beyond the developer’s initial projections, which at one point had the building breaking ground in 2016 and wrapping up construction by 2018.

Riverwalk Place was proposed as a pioneering, mixed-use project on a property once known as the Trump Tower site, after plans for a Donald Trump-licensed condo tower there crashed along with the real estate market. In late 2018, the developers said they were ditching plans for office space in the tower in response to the demand for luxury condos.

“Developers of 53-story mixed-use Riverwalk Place to begin external demolition of CapTrust building in downtown Tampa”Tampa Bay Business Journal (subscription required)

Tampa Named a Best City for Recreation

Tampa was named 2019’s 5th Best City for Recreation in a recent study from the leading personal finance outlet You can find the full study here.

To highlight the benefits of recreational activities for consumers and economies across the country, WalletHub compared the 100 largest U.S. cities across 48 key indicators of recreation-friendliness. For each city, we examined the accessibility of entertainment and recreational facilities, the quality of parks and the weather. Below, you can find highlights from the report, along with additional commentary.

City of Tampa to Celebrate Archives Awareness Week

The City of Tampa will celebrate Archives Awareness Week with exhibits and programs taking place at local archives throughout the week of July 14 – 20, 2019. These programs are free and open to the public unless otherwise noted.

Archives Awareness Week was established in 1992 by the City of Tampa Archives Advisory Committee. During this week, local archivists and history enthusiasts come together to present their collections through exhibits and programs that convey the value of archives in the identification, preservation and conservation of historic records. Archives Awareness Week is held during the second week of July to coincide with the City of Tampa’s July 15th birthday.

For more information on the City of Tampa’s Archives Awareness Week or about various exhibits or programs, please visit

Key Exhibits and Programs

  • Exhibits will be held all week long at the Tampa Bay History Center, Tampa Museum of Art, John F. Germany Public Library, Henry B. Plant Museum, Ybor City Museum State Park, and Old City Hall.
  • On Sunday, July 14th, at 2:00p.m., Sacred Heart Church will feature a program on former City of Tampa Mayor John Jackson, and his wife Ellen, who were founding members of the church.
  • On Monday, July 15th, the City of Tampa will highlight local historians Fred Hearns, Andy Huse, and E.J. Salcines, who share what Tampa was like 50 and 100 years ago. Guests will receive a new publication, Tampa in 1919.
  • On Tuesday, July 16th, at 3:30p.m., the Henry B. Plant Museum will screen a new documentary film, Letters from Tampa: Two Spanish-American War Stories. Following the film, join Dr. Charles McGraw Groh on a guided tour of a temporary exhibit, Dirty Laundry: True Tales of Women Workers at the Tampa Bay Hotel.
  • On Wednesday, July 17th at 1:00p.m., Tampa Bay History Center curator Brad Massey will tell guests about Tampa in 1919, and share various items from the collection.
  • On Wednesday, July 17th at 2:00p.m., the Robert W. Saunders. Sr. Library will hold an archiving tutorial on how to preserve historical documents and photographs.
  • On Thursday, July 18th at 2:00p.m., librarians at the University of South Florida Libraries Special Collections will feature a show and tell session highlighting unique and valuable materials.
  • On Thursday, July 18th at 6:30p.m., the Tampa Museum of Art will feature a talk, the Influence of Abstract Expressionism.
  • On Friday, July 19th at 10:00a.m., the Tampa Bay History Center will lead a 90 minute guided tour of downtown Tampa. $20 per person, registration required: org
  • On Friday, July 19th at 1:00p.m., librarians at the Robert W. Saunders, Sr. Library’s African American History and Genealogy Library will lead a demonstration on how to use microfilm to conduct genealogical research.
  • On Saturday, July 20th from 11:00am-2:00pm, Tampa Historical Society will host an open house sharing historical artifacts.

Downtown Calendar

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!

Retail 101

Tuesday, July 9, 10am to 11am
Tampa City Center, 2nd floor, Room #225
Are you a small business retailer or an entrepreneur looking to start a small retail business? If you are interested in becoming a vendor during Winter Village at Curtis Hixon Park’s upcoming season, the Tampa Downtown Partnership invites you to join this free Retail 101 session. Local small business experts will share their experiences as vendors at the Shops of Winter Village. Speakers include Steve McGlocklin from Whatever Pops, Danielle Evans from Don Me Now, and Ben and Lisa Prakobkit from The Modern Paws. This is a free and open event, but pre-registration is required as space is limited. For more information, go to Retail 101.

Heights Night Market

Wednesday, July 10, begins 6pm
Armature Works
A monthly evening market taking place on 7th Ave in front of Armature Works, feature a rotating cast of artisanal creators, makers, and artists selling handmade goods, jewelry, art, wood-work, gifts and so much more. Heights Night Market is free to attend, family-friendly, and features live music at each event. For more information, go to Heights Night Market.


Thursday, July 11 to Sunday, July 14
Tampa Convention Center
Florida’s largest anime convention boasts a number of exciting stage shows, unique vendors, exciting panelists, and interactive events throughout the weekend, including the world famous Anime Human Chess Match, where characters from your favorite anime and video games will battle it out for the fate of the world! For more information, go to METROCON.

On the Marquee at Tampa Theatre

Echo in the Canyon (2019) – Through Thursday, July 11
What Ever Happened To Baby Jane? (1962) – Friday, July 12, 10:30pm to 12:45am
All That Jazz (1979) – Sunday, July 14, 3pm to 5pm

Taking the Stage at the Straz Center

The Lightning Thief: The Percy Jackson Musical – Tuesday, July 9 to Sunday, July 14
Constellations by Nick Payne – Wednesday, July 10 to Sunday, August 4
Aerial Dragons: Hypnotica – Saturday, July 13 and Sunday, July 14

Connect With Us!

Connect with us on social media to get the latest on downtown events!

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.

Sign Up Now