Monday Morning Memo

Monday, June 18, 2018

Partnership Presents

Emergency Access Cards for Downtown Businesses

In an effort to better serve you in the event of a downtown emergency, the Tampa Downtown Partnership (TDP) maintains a database of key personnel, initially allowed access into downtown following a disaster. This list is provided to the Tampa Police Department (TPD) to assist with re-entry. Emergency Access Cards are provided to Level I and II responders who will present the card AND photo ID at reentry checkpoints. Reentry is at the full discretion of emergency personnel, based on the safety & security of the downtown area. TPD requests a maximum of five Level I responders per building and a maximum of three Level II responders per company. Please allow 14 days for processing. In the event of a hurricane, access cards will not be produced within 48 hours of projected landfall. Please note: There is a $5 charge for replacement cards due to loss, name changes and for all special consideration cards that exceed the maximum allowed. Cards do not expire. Downtown residents do not need a card—photo ID with downtown address is sufficient. Download the Emergency Access Card Request form.

We Support USF’s ‘Stop the Bleed’ Program

The Tampa Downtown Partnership is proud to partner with The University of South Florida’s “Stop the Bleed” program that provides non-medically trained bystanders the knowledge and tools to help prevent someone from bleeding to death. During the Annual Hurricane Preparedness Meeting on June 13, Dr. Llerena, MD, FACS, Associate Professor of Surgery and Medical Director with USF Health, CAMLS presented on the importance of the program and bleeding control kits. In fact, all the proceeds from the Preparedness meeting are going to support the program. Dr. Llerena is working with the Partnership to develop a strategy that best prepares the downtown area for an emergency. He’s also trained dozens of employees at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts, one of Tampa’s preeminent cultural organizations. A major component of the “Stop the Bleed” training, is empowering participants to train colleagues and other members of the community. The Straz is advancing USF’s efforts by educating additional hospitality groups and agencies on how to use the bleeding control kits in an effort to save more lives. Learn more about Stop the Bleed here.

Enjoy Arts & Culture with Fourth Friday

This Friday, June 22, 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. This month’s Featured Offers include the Florida Museum of Photographic Art, the Italian Club in Ybor, the John F. Germany Library, and the Straz Center. Other participating venues include the AIA Tampa Bay Gallery, Henry B. Plant Museum, Rialto Theatre, Unlock Tampa Bay Visitors Center, and many more! Check out all the specials and programs at and be sure to follow the event on Facebook!

Our Annual Meeting is Next Week, Join Us

Next Wednesday, June 27th is our 32nd Annual Meeting happening at the Hilton Tampa Downtown. The Annual Meeting and Luncheon is the Tampa Downtown Partnership’s premier event. Once a year the Partnership has the opportunity to share with our members and the downtown community a celebration of our organization’s successes and accomplishments throughout the year, recognize our outgoing and incoming Board Chair and induct Board officers and directors for the upcoming year. The event features dynamic speakers, the release of the Partnership’s Annual Year in Review, remarks from the Partnership’s Board leadership, and a look at what lays ahead for downtown and our organization.  The Annual Meeting is a great opportunity to connect with downtown stakeholders, learn about key issues, and celebrate downtown’s continued growth. This year we welcome Mayor Bob Buckhorn and Mayor Joe Riley from the City of Charleston. Register todaySponsorship opportunities are available.

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.

Music in the Museum

Thursday, June 21, begins 11am
Henry B. Plant Museum
Visit the Museum to hear a live classical music performance. Live concerts were the most popular daily entertainment at the Tampa Bay hotel in its heyday, and Music in the Museum restores this authentic tradition. Enjoy the sounds of the harp, guitar, or violin as you explore the Museum. This program is included with admission to the Museum. For more information, go to Music in the Museum.

3rd Thursdays

Thursday, June 21, 6pm to 10pm
Grand Central at Kennedy
Enjoy some gourmet food truck fun paired with Independent short flicks and live music! Pour House and City Dog Cantina provide micro brews and tasty cocktails. 10-15 gourmet food trucks will offer everything from burgers to vegetarian bites. For more information, go to 3rd Thursdays.

Fourth Friday

Friday, June 22, 4pm to 9pm
Downtown Tampa, Tampa Heights and Ybor City
When the sun goes down, the streets of Tampa and Ybor will light up with music, laughter, art, friends and FREE fun. This evening of special offerings and programs by cultural venues, restaurants, and more takes place on the fourth Friday of every month! For more info, go to Fourth Friday.

On the Marquee at Tampa Theatre

Won’t You Be My Neighbor? (2018) – Through Wednesday, June 27
To Kill A Mockingbird (1962) – Sunday, June 24, 3pm to 5:15pm

On Stage at the Straz Center

Latin Nights – Thursday, June 21, begins 9pm
Bobby Bones Red Hoodie Comedy Tour – Friday, June 22, begins 8pm

This Week at Amalie Arena

Daryl Hall & John Oates and Train – Friday, June 22, begins 7pm
Tampa Bay Bridal Show – Sunday, June 24, begins at Noon

On Stage at Jobsite Theater

Dancing at Lughnasa – Through Sunday, July 8

Doing Business in Downtown

Marketplace Spotlight: Watervue Grille & Café Dufrain

Sitting across the street from each other on Harbour Post Drive, Watervue Grille and Café Dufrain offer distinct fresh flavors with some of the area’s best views of the Garrison Channel and Downtown Tampa. On Monday, enjoy Taco Mondays at Water Vue Grill with their Crispy Grouper Taco and a Draft Beer for only $14. Café Dufrain celebrates Monday with no cork fees! – Bring your own bottle of wine in and we will pop the cork for you at no charge! Busy tonight? No problem. On Tuesday, enjoy the Dufrain Smashed Steak Burger and A Draft Beer for only $14 on Tuesdays at Café Dufrain.

Rivergate Tower is Attracting Creative Firms

When Banyan Street Capital acquired Rivergate Tower in 2015, the Miami real estate investors knew they were buying something different: A cylindrical limestone office tower surrounded by more traditional, quadratic skyscrapers. For Banyan, the difference became more than an aesthetic: It became a renovation plan and ultimately, a marketing campaign. Banyan hired Gensler, an international architecture firm that’s among the biggest in Tampa Bay, to make that reality. Gensler ended up literally buying into Banyan’s vision, leasing 8,400 square feet in the cube-shaped, six-story building adjacent to Rivergate Tower. And they’re not the only ones: Within the next few months, Chapman expects the occupancy percentage to be in the mid-90s. Historically, Rivergate Tower has been 60 percent to 70 percent occupied. To date, Banyan has spent around $14 million to $9 million on aesthetics and $5 million on mechanics and infrastructure — upgrading Rivergate Tower. Dark carpets have given way to marble floors, and previously dark spaces are now bright and open.
“After $14M Renovation, Rivergate Tower In Downtown Tampa Is Attracting Creative Firms — Including Its Own Architect”Tampa Bay Business Journal (subscription required)

 Tampa Electric is Ready for Hurricane Season

Hurricane season starts June 1, and Tampa Electric is ready. The company’s year-round preparations enable crews to handle the potential impacts of hurricanes and widespread power outages. Tampa Electric’s comprehensive storm plan is in place and crews are ready to help restore power as safely and quickly as possible in the event of severe weather. The company also recommends that customers have a storm plan in place for their homes or businesses. For more information, please see the annual storm season news release.

Gensler Doubles Office Space in Downtown

Walking into Gensler’s new office in downtown Tampa, as diffused natural light pours in from four stories of windows, it’s difficult to believe the space hasn’t been occupied for around two decades. The architecture firm has leased the fourth- and fifth-floor mezzanines in the cube-shaped building adjacent to Rivergate Tower, with views of Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park. It’s an airy, modern space, overlooking the cube’s six-story lobby. The 8,400 square feet is double what Gensler previously had in another downtown office tower, 100 North Tampa, and gives the firm room to grow. Its current headcount is 43, but the new space can hold up to 60 people. Gensler had outgrown its previous space, which was one of the driving forces behind the move. But the firm also wanted to feel more connected to downtown Tampa and build on its existing connection to Rivergate Tower: Gensler was the architect of a $14 million renovation plan executed by Banyan Street Real Estate Capital, which bought the tower in 2015.
“Gensler Doubles Office Space In Downtown Tampa, Moves To Rivergate Tower’s Cube (Photos)”Tampa Bay Business Journal (subscription required)

Development and Transportation

Streetcar Receives Grant for Free Rides, Enhanced Service

The Hillsborough Area Regional Authority (HART) has been awarded $2.7 million in grant funding from the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) that will support extending TECO Line Streetcar service hours, increase frequency, and provide free rides to customers for the next three years. The $2.7 million grant will be used to increase Streetcar service from every 20 minutes to every 15 minutes and provide extended service hours. The increased streetcar service will improve mobility and access by affording residents access to additional job opportunities, and provide enhanced connectivity in downtown, the Channel District, and Ybor City.  The enhanced streetcar service will accomplish multiple goals; however, the primary objective is to add another mobility and connectivity option for residents, employees, and visitors in downtown Tampa and the city at large. With planned extensions, the Streetcar will also create a vital connection between downtown and neighborhoods and further spread the vibrancy and development that is currently being seen in the downtown area. The Streetcar Extension Study from Downtown Tampa to Tampa Heights, also funded by FDOT, is currently in project development to pursue federal funding. For all-things HART, including OneBusAway, trip planning, schedules, maps and fares, visit

FDOT – Downtown Area Open House

Join Tampa Bay Next for a Community Working Group Session on Monday, June 25 from 6pm to 8pm at Armature Works – Social Hall. Discussion will be focused on the Tampa Interstate Study (TIS) Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) evaluation process and proposed improvements to the Downtown Tampa Interchange (I-275/I-4). Roundtable discussions will focus on concept design options for the Downtown Tampa Interchange (I-275/I-4). Information on related transportation topics and projects will be available in an open house format throughout the meeting. For more information:

New Effort Under Way for Transportation Tax

A new effort is under way to get a sales tax hike on the November ballot. Commissioners learned of the plan from supporter Jeff Vinik, owner of the Tampa Bay Lightning and the driving force behind a $3 billion entertainment district around Amalie Arena. All for Transportation, as the group is called, must collect 49,000 signatures in the next six weeks to get an initiative on the ballot. The measure would ask voters to approve a one penny county sales tax hike, from seven cents on the dollar to eight cents, for a 30-year period beginning in 2019. Forty-five percent of the money raised would go to the Hillsborough Area Regional Transit to improve bus service and pay for other mass transit. The remainder would go to Hillsborough County, Tampa, Temple Terrace and Plant City for road and bridge improvements, pothole repair, sidewalks, bike lanes and projects to ease congestion. If approved by voters, the tax would raise about $280 million per year.
“Hillsborough Group Pushing New Referendum On Raising Sales Tax For Transportation”Tampa Bay Times

Local Agency Pushes for Gold Standard in BRT

The Tampa Bay Partnership came out early in favor of the proposed 41-mile bus rapid transit route connecting St. Petersburg to Wesley Chapel along Interstate 275, but its advocacy has since gotten much more specific. The agency is pushing for so-called gold standard BRT, according to criteria established by the Institute for Transportation and Development Policy, a think tank based in New York. Those standards include buses that run exclusively in dedicated lanes, stations with raised platforms for quick and easy boarding, and off-board ticketing to avoid delays as people pay for their rides, among other criteria. As criticism mounted that the plan would amount to little more than a very expensive express bus, plans evolved. The shouldering is now more secure, with plans to harden the existing space and paint the lanes to create exclusivity. But everything is in flux and it’s unclear whether buses will have dedicated lanes throughout the route or if some sort of flex model might take over.
“Tampa Bay Partnership Sharpens Vision For Bay Area Bus Rapid Transit Plan”Tampa Bay Business Journal (subscription required)

Member Corner

HART’s Emergency Evacuation Service

To make the Emergency Evacuation Service easy for customers, HART will announce the need to interrupt regular service as early in the day as possible and will work to restore service as soon as safely possible after the storm. HART buses run special evacuation routes for people who need transportation to shelters. HART and the Hillsborough County Office of Emergency Management urge residents to prepare for the worst by having a plan before a hurricane or tropical storm strikes. For the safety of HART riders and employees, regular service will cease if sustained winds reach 39 mph. Regular HART service will also be modified once the Office of Emergency Management instructs HART to begin operation of Emergency Evacuation service after an evacuation is declared.

JP Morgan & Chase Invest in Tampa Bay Partnership

JPMorgan Chase & Co. is investing $300,000 in the Tampa Bay Partnership’s nonprofit arm, the company announced Tuesday. The money will be used to look at whether Tampa Bay is producing enough skilled workers to fuel its growth and figure out how to bridge any gaps. The effort, led by the partnership’s Regional Talent Working Group, will have three phases. First, the group will work to understand the programs that produce workers — such as education institutions and internship programs — and identify five of the most-affected industries. Then, one industry will be chosen and the group will work with employers to determine their needs. Finally, it will devise a strategy and performance metrics to build a more effective pipeline to the chosen industry and businesses.
“Jpmorgan & Chase Invests $300,000 To Tampa Bay Partnership”Tampa Bay Times

36th Annual Planning & Design Awards

The Planning Commission is proud to announce the 36th annual celebration of excellence in planning in Hillsborough County. This awards program is a well-respected tradition honoring projects contributing to a better quality of life in our community and serving as models to learn from and emulate. See Call for Entries for details on Criteria, Categories, and Submission. Complete submission packages will be accepted only in digital format no later than Tuesday, August 28, 2018 at 5 p.m. with $195 entry fee. NEW Early Bird Entry! This year, we will be accepting early bird entries for complete submission packages delivered no later than 5:00 p.m. on Wednesday, August 1, 2018 with reduced entry fee of $125! Visit event site for more info and sponsorship opportunities.

TBBCA Welcomes New pARTner

Tampa Bay Businesses for Culture & the Arts (“TBBCA”) is pleased to welcome Jerri Menaul and My Favorite Art Place as a TBBCA pARTner. My Favorite Art Place is recognized as an industry-leading integrated commercial and residential arts environments designer, creator and supplier. Founders and Owners Jerri and her husband, abstract surrealist artist Scott Menaul, bring over three decades of leadership in the visual communications and arts business. My Favorite Art Place specializes in fine art printing and custom and specialty framing with high level of creativity using only top quality materials and craftsmanship. It is a community resource that produces a podcast, offers expert advice, and also exhibits and sells Scott’s award-winning work.
“Tampa Bay Businesses for Culture & the Arts Welcomes New pARTner” Tampa Bay Newswire

Around Town

USF Sun Dome Now the Yuengling Center

Tampa Bay Entertainment Properties, LLC (TBEP), acting as the agent for the University of South Florida (USF) and Sun Dome, Inc. (SDI) has reached an agreement with D.G. Yuengling & Son, Inc. for the naming rights of the Sun Dome. As of July 1, 2018, and for the 10-year term of the contract, the official name of the facility will be the Yuengling Center. A Yuengling Center logo has been created, all digital and social domains will be changed and facility uniforms, including employee name tags will bear the Yuengling Center moniker. In addition to the more typical sponsorship benefits guaranteed with the naming rights acquisition, Yuengling will also receive east and west-side field level signs and LED ribbon board branding in Raymond James Stadium for USF home football games, extensive assets for all men’s and women’s basketball games played in the arena along with signage at USF baseball and softball games.

Suburban Office Building Sells for $15.2M

An Atlanta real estate firm has sold off a suburban Tampa office building that it has owned since 2015. Reva Companies, based in Richmond, Virginia, paid $15.2 million for a Sabal Park office building at 3611 Queen Palm Drive, according to a Hillsborough County property deed filed last week. The 98,540-square-foot building on 7.75 acres was built in 1988, according to property records. Aetna is among its tenants. Atlanta-based Fairlead Commercial Real Estate paid $13.2 million for the building in 2015.
“Suburban Tampa Office Building Sold For $15.2 Million”Tampa Bay Business Journal (subscription required)

Evacuation Zones vs. Flood Zones

Though they are often mistaken for each other, Flood Zones and Evacuation Zones are two very different things that measure very different conditions. Interestingly, a home may be in a non-evacuation zone, but still be in a high risk flood zone because of a nearby pond or stream. Alternatively, a home could be in a low risk flood zone, but still in an early evacuation zone because of storm surge projections or high winds. That’s why it’s important to know both your Flood Zone and your Evacuation Zone, and the difference between them. Here’s a helpful guide from Hillsborough County.

More Boat-up Dining Coming to Westshore Marina District

The developer of Westshore Marina District envisions a dual-concept, multilevel waterfront restaurant as part of the project, alongside luxury condominiums and a 1.5-mile park overlooking Old Tampa Bay. Fort Lauderdale-based BTI Partners, the master developer of the district, is in talks with local operators to occupy the restaurant, which will likely have space for multiple concepts. It will be a boat-up restaurant with its own floating dock. Ideally, there would be one upscale restaurant and one that’s more casual, in line with Hula Bay Club, a waterfront restaurant directly north of the Westshore Marina District.
“Westshore Marina District Developer Plans Dual-Concept Restaurant On The Water And Says Tampa Is ‘Starved’ For Boat-Up Dining”Tampa Bay Business Journal (subscription required)

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