Monday Morning Memo

Monday, May 20, 2019

Member Spotlight: Tampa Bay Higher Education Alliance

The Tampa Bay Higher Education Alliance (TBHEA) serves as an education resource to the community. TBHEA is comprised of regionally accredited colleges and universities that work together to increase the awareness of higher education opportunities in the Greater Tampa Bay area. Since its inception in 2001, TBHEA members have coordinated hundreds of education fairs and wellness events throughout Tampa Bay.

TBHEA arranges education events for organizations looking for ways to bring information directly to employees. Topics covered at education fairs include academic programs, financial aid, and admissions requirements. This service is free of charge. To learn more about the Tampa Bay Higher Education Alliance or to schedule an education fair for your company or organization, email or visit

Memorial Day Guides and Office Hours

In observance of Memorial Day, our office will close at noon on Friday, May 24 and will reopen at 8am on Tuesday, May 28. Our Downtown Guides and Clean Team will have abbreviated hours. The Downtown Guides will be available from 8am until 5pm on Memorial Day while the Clean Team will work 7am until 4pm. To reach the Guides, call 813.267.2220. To reach the Clean Team, call 813.267.2221. Learn more about their services.

Downtown’s Bike to Work Ride & Rally

In celebration of National Bike Month, join us and Mayor Castor for Downtown Tampa’s Bike to Work Ride and Rally on May 23rd! Meet at one of the eight neighborhood locations throughout Tampa and ride with an experienced leader to Lykes Gaslight Park in Downtown Tampa. Times vary on meet-up location and range from 7:10am to 7:25am. The rally will feature vendors, music, snacks, and a few words from the Mayor. We will welcome and acknowledge the four new arts and culture venues that are now designated as bicycle friendly businesses; the Tamp Museum of Art, Glazer Children’s Museum, Tampa History Center, and the Florida Aquarium. We hope you’ll join us for the ride and rally afterwards! Visit the Facebook event page for more information.

Tampa Downtown Partnership’s 33rd Annual Meeting

At the Annual Meeting and Luncheon, the Tampa Downtown Partnership inducts new leadership and celebrates the organization’s accomplishments with our members, stakeholders, and the community-at-large. Join us on June 19 as we welcome keynote speaker, Tim Tompkins, President & CEO of the Times Square Alliance.

This event includes a plated lunch and Keynote presentation. Check-In begins at 11am, program will begin promptly at Noon.

Register today!

More About the Keynote Speaker

Tim Tompkins has been the President of the Times Square Alliance since 2002. The Alliance is a business improvement district that works to improve and promote Times Square – cultivating the creativity, energy and edge that have made the area an icon of entertainment, culture and urban life for over a century.

He is a board member of the NYC BID Association and the current Chair of the International Downtown Association. Prior to joining the Alliance, he was the Founder and Director of Partnerships for Parks, which works to support New York City’s neighborhood parks and which won an Innovations in Government Award from the JFK School of Government at Harvard for its work to restore the Bronx River. He has also worked at New York City’s Economic Development Corporation, The New York City Charter Revision Commission, and was briefly the Nationals Editor at the Mexico City News, an English language newspaper in Mexico. He has an undergraduate degree from Yale and an M.B.A. from Wharton, and currently teaches “Transforming Cities” and “The Arts and Artist in Urban Revitalization” at the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. When not in the most urban and unnatural place on the planet, he enjoys being in New York’s natural areas, ideally sailing or practicing yoga.

How Should Downtown Tampa Prepare for Hurricane Season?

With the start of hurricane season fast approaching June 1, the Tampa Downtown Partnership is hosting a team of emergency experts for its Annual Hurricane Preparedness Meeting June 5 at TECO Hall.

If you’re wondering what a direct hurricane hit would be like in downtown Tampa, just ask Lynda Remund, President and CEO of the Partnership.

“If we had a direct hit, the first four floors of the office and residential towers would be under water. That’s pretty significant when you think about that,” says Remund, who has seen plenty of hurricane seasons in her 19 years with the downtown organization.

Fortunately, Tampa hasn’t had a direct hit since 1921, but after watching the devastation and increased intensity of hurricanes in the past decade, there’s a greater sense of urgency for both businesses and residents in downtown Tampa and across the area to be prepared.

The problem is, “people don’t start preparing until we have an impending storm,” Remund says. “It’s really important that we prepare now. It’s never too early to start preparing.”

The event will feature local emergency and rescue experts from the Tampa Police and Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Departments, Hillsborough County Emergency Management, Hillsborough County Rescue and Tampa Electric Company. Brian LaMarre, Meteorologist-In-Charge at the Tampa Bay Area Weather Forecast Office of the National Weather Service, will be there to help paint a picture of how different scenarios could impact Tampa’s downtown.

New re-entry program

Panelists will discuss the biggest change for hurricane preparation, which involves the updated City of Tampa Re-Entry Program.

The program is designed to streamline the process for residents and key personnel returning to an area to assess damage after a catastrophic event.

To prevent gawkers and potential criminals from entering an area after evacuation orders have been lifted, public safety officials will screen vehicles returning to the impacted area. Those vehicles with hang tags displayed will be waved through, avoiding potentially long lines.

The city recently mailed vehicle hang tags to homeowners in areas most likely to be evacuated, as well as business members of the Tampa Downtown Partnership and Westshore Alliance. This includes those in zip code areas 33602, 33605, 33606, 33609, 33611, 33616, 33619, 33629, and MacDill Air Force Base. Hang tags have also been provided to apartment management offices. Residents and businesses can order additional hang tags for $5 through the City of Tampa.

With increased hurricane activity, Remund says she’s noticed business leaders are more engaged and aware. One indication is the preparedness event has sold out in recent years.

“The awareness is there for the business community. Over the years I’ve seen them step up to the plate and I’m seeing them have their emergency procedures in place now,” she says. The key is to “have their emergency preparedness statements in their manuals and relay this to their tenants: ‘Should this happen, this is what we’re going to do.’ The business has to be prepared and know if we shut down this is how we’re going to handle it.”

Hurricane event details

  • What: Annual Hurricane Preparedness Meeting of the Tampa Downtown Partnership
  • When: Wednesday, June 5, 8-9 a.m.
  • Where: TECO Hall, 702 N. Franklin Street, Tampa
  • Cost: $22 Partnership members, $27 non-members
  • What’s included: Panel discussion and buffet breakfast


Confirmed Speakers:

Holley Wade – Special Operations Manager, Hillsborough County Rescue
Capt. Bill Wade – President, Tampa Firefighters Museum (prev. Tampa Fire Rescue)
Lee Collins – Manager, ED Emergency Management, Tampa Electric
Assistant Chief Elias Vazquez – Tampa Police Department
Deputy Chief Lee Bercaw – Tampa Police Department
Sheriff Chronister – Hillsborough County Sherriff’s Office
Chief Deputy Donna Lusczynski –  Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office
Brian LaMarre – Meteorologist-In-Charge, National Weather Center – Tampa Bay Area

“How Should Downtown Tampa Prepare for Hurricane Season?”83 Degrees

The Partnership is Hiring

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

Position Overview

The operations manager ensures the delivery of high-quality service through development and implementation of efficient operational systems and quality assurance mechanisms and through effective leadership in 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.

Herman Massey Park Design: Public Input Meeting

On Monday, May 20 at 6:30pm, the Downtown River Arts Neighborhood Association (DRANA) is holding a public input meeting for the re-design of Herman Massey Park. Herman Massey Park sits on the northwest corner of Tyler and Franklin Streets and is part of the Downtown River Arts Neighborhood.

As part of DRANA’s 2017 priorities, the association facilitated surveys to determine park needs from the community.  Overwhelmingly, public safety was identified as the community’s priority and DRANA approached the City of Tampa Community Redevelopment Area for park improvements.  As a result, upward of $900,000 has been committed to the park redesign and revitalization.

During community feedback sessions last year, the City of Tampa Parks and Recreation Department introduced the Herman Massey Park improvement project and allowed the community to provide additional insights on park needs.

Design concepts are now ready for public input.  Please come to voice your thoughts on the park design and investment.

When: May 20, 2019 >> 6:30pm

Where: Skypoint Clubroom, 777 N Ashley Drive 8th Floor, Tampa FL, 33602



Downtown Museums Offer Free Admission to Military and Families

The Tampa Museum of Art, Florida Museum of Photographic Arts, H.B. Plant Museum, and Tampa Bay History Center have joined museums nationwide in participating in the tenth summer of Blue Star Museums, a program which provides free admission to our nation’s active-duty military personnel and their families. The 2019 summer program will begin earlier than in past years, launching on Saturday, May 18, Armed Forces Day, and ending on Monday, September 2, Labor Day. Military can find the list of participating museums at

Blue Star Museums is an initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts in collaboration with Blue Star Families, the Department of Defense, and more than 2,000 museums nationwide. First Lady of the United States Melania Trump and Second Lady of the United States Karen Pence are honorary co-chairs of Blue Star Museums 2019.

“The National Endowment for the Arts is proud to celebrate the tenth summer of collaborating with Blue Star Families, Department of Defense, and especially the more than 2,000 museums across our nation that make this program possible,” said Mary Anne Carter, acting chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts. “Organizations such as the Tampa Museum of Art are providing wonderful opportunities for military families to share a memorable experience together this summer.”

The free admission program is available for those currently serving in the United States Military—Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard as well as members of the Reserves, National Guard, U.S. Public Health Commissioned Corps, NOAA Commissioned Corps, and up to five family members. Qualified members must show a Geneva Convention common access card (CAC), DD Form 1173 ID card (dependent ID), or a DD Form 1173-1 ID card for entrance into a participating Blue Star Museum.

USF signs off on Tampa General's deal to lease space in Water Street medical school

Tampa General Hospital will be leasing space inside the new medical school going up in downtown Tampa.

TGH won approval from the University of South Florida Board of Trustees’ Finance Committee on May 14 to lease space inside the new USF Health Morsani College of Medicine and Heart Institute that will be an anchor of the $3 billion, mixed-use Water Street district.

The USF Board of Trustees will need to approve the lease agreement during its June 6 meeting.

The hospital will have a $20 million, 25-year lease for a total of 25,000 square feet to have joint USF Health/TGH health care-related services.

The floors the hospital wants to use include:

  • First floor – 6,501 square feet
  • Ninth floor – 8,933 square feet
  • 12th floor – 9,679 square feet

The first floor, or ground floor, lease would be for TGH to create a co-branded imaging center and a TGH urgent care clinic; the ninth floor lease would be to create a heart health co-location; and the 12th floor would be used for an executive wellness area, according to USF documents.

“This will be a huge asset for the Water Street community,” said Dr. Charles Lockwood, senior vice president for USF Health and dean of the Morsani College of Medicine.

Lockwood said the imaging center would be used for research and clinical purposes.

The lease agreement is in parallel to efforts the university and hospital system are undergoing to form a joint venture partnership. USF Health and TGH are building on their longstanding affiliation to become Florida’s leading academic medical center. The partnership would allow the two entities to consolidate infrastructure, receive more funding, share resources and recruit talent.

TGH currently acts as the teaching hospital for the university.

“USF signs off on Tampa General’s deal to lease space in Water Street medical schoolTampa Bay Business Journal

Plans Move Forward for Permanent Ferry Service in Tampa Bay

The Hillsborough County Commission voted Wednesday to move forward with plans for a permanent ferry service between downtown St. Petersburg, downtown Tampa, MacDill Air Force Base and South Hillsborough County at Williams Park. What is at issue is how they will go about doing it.

The motion passed by a 4-3 vote. Commissioners Stacy White, Mariella Smith, Pat Kemp and Kimberly Overman voted in favor of the plan. Commissioners Sandry Murman, Ken Hagan and Les Miller Jr. voted against it.

The commission discussed the plan for more than two hours Wednesday.

The 149-passenger ferry – which has operated seasonally from November through April – has taken riders back and forth between St. Petersburg’s North Straub Park by the Vinoy Hotel to Port Tampa Bay near the Florida Aquarium.

The Cross-Bay Ferry won’t become a permanent service until at least 2022, according to last month’s announcement by HMS Ferries Inc. and South Swell Development Corp. There are plans to expand ferry service to include Williams Park and MacDill Air Force Base.

Expansion plans call for service to operate between 12-16 hours each day, seven days a week.

The proposed MacDill Air Force Base commuter service would operate every 10-15 minutes between the base and Williams Park. It would take commuters about 14 minutes to ride on the water across Tampa Bay instead of going around the top of Tampa Bay. A roundtrip voucher would cost about $15 per day, which would cover parking, the ferry and tram service.

The Williams Park site would require the acquisition of property from the Mosaic Co. to develop a parking lot for at least 750 cars. Plans would expand parking at the site for up to 1,500 parking spaces.

Mosaic is one of the world’s largest combined producers of potash and phosphates. Murman said she had four conversations with Mosaic about acquiring the land, who she said repeatedly told her the company wasn’t interested in selling the land to the county. According to Murman, putting a commuter service at Williams Park would be a “risk and a danger” because of the infrastructure at the site. Murman said Mosaic told her “no” and “hell no” repeatedly when she asked if the county would be able to acquire or buy the land from the company. Toward the end of the discussion, Murman said she would soon present a plan for South Hillsborough County at a different site than Williams Park.

“There are other options than buying their property,” Smith said.

“This is about who is going to be financially responsible,” Murman said.

Murman and Miller wanted the Hillsborough Regional Transit Authority (HART) to be responsible for it.

HMS also stated it is not currently in a position to provide year-round service.

Overman said she wanted to see Hillsborough County, Pinellas County, Tampa, St. Petersburg and HART to have “productive conversations” with Mosaic.

Murman and Hagan said there wouldn’t be enough money throughout the county for other projects without first addressing the land with Mosaic.

However, Smith said she didn’t want the voters to think the commissioners who voted in favor of the permanent ferry service were, “somehow less fiscally conservative than those who oppose it.”

Smith said one ferry is equal to 12 buses.

Proposals call for Hillsborough County, along with other state and local agencies, to provide $36,561,800 for year-round ferry service, which includes costs of terminals, docks, vessels and trams.

Private partners have offered to cover operating, maintenance and repair costs for a 20-year period. It’s an estimated cost of $104 million.

At least two ferries would circulate between South Hillsborough County and each downtown location. Plans say there would also be additional ferries on nights when events are scheduled at Amalie Arena or Tropicana Field.

On Monday, Cross-Bay Ferry organizers asked for the public to email commissioners to express their support of offering the service year-round. County commissioners received 315 emails in support of the project.

Hillsborough County commissioners carried a motion by a 7-0 vote for the Cross-Bay Ferry to receive reoccurring payments spread equally among Hillsborough County, Pinellas County, Tampa and St. Petersburg.

The Cross-Bay ferry’s ridership numbers increased to 52,528 riders for the second season from November 2018 through April 2019. It beat the first pilot run when the ferry had 40,854 riders from November 2016 through April 2017.

The ferry skipped the November 2017-April 2018 season.

Earlier this month, St. Petersburg Transportation Director Evan Mory told 10News he would know by the summer if the ferry will return for another seasonal run.

When it operates, the Cross-Bay Ferry costs riders:

  • $8 for adults
  • $5 for seniors, military (active/retired) and college students with an ID
  • $3 for children ages 5-18
  • Free for children ages 4 and younger

“Plans Move Forward for Permanent Ferry Service in Tampa Bay”WTSP Channel 10 News

How Does Downtown Tampa’s SunTrust Building Light Up at Night?

The SunTrust Financial Centre’s iconic “ziggurat” lights up the Downtown Tampa skyline nightly with LED light designs honoring holidays, sports teams, and the American flag. The Tampa Bay Times “Florida Wonders” series takes an in-depth look at the architecture and technology behind the multicolored roof.

Highwoods Properties manages the SunTrust Financial Centre building. The roof structure  is illuminated by roughly 300 LED lights and is programmed similar to theater or concert lighting.

“How does downtown Tampa’s SunTrust building light up at night? We went to the top to find out.”Tampa Bay Times (subscription required)

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.

Summer Bubbles! Walk-Around Tasting

Thursday, May 23, begins 6pm

Armature Works

What better way to start the summer than with some bubbly? Taste twelve current favorites from all over the wine world: natural wine darling Pet-Nats, value-driven Cremants, classical Champagnes, and many more. There will be big discounts on wine to take home and a raffle for an extra special bottle. Don’t miss this chance to party bubbly style! For more information, go to Summer Bubbles! Walk-Around Tasting.

Tampa Bay Margarita & Music Festival 2019

Saturday, May 25, Noon to 11pm

Julian B. Lane Riverfront Park

Florida’s largest celebration of margaritas and live music. Celebrate America’s favorite drink, the margarita, and spend Memorial Day weekend at the best festival in Tampa Bay! Enjoy live music, tons of margaritas, games, shopping, great food options, and end the night with a bang with the largest fireworks show in the area. For more info, go to Tampa Bay Margarita & Music Festival 2019.

Taking the Stage at the Straz Center

Hedda Adapted by Lucy Kirkwood from the play by Henrik Ibsen – Through Sunday, June 2

Nicholas David – Monday, May 20, begins 7:30pm

Jeremy Douglass: Broadway Pre-Show – Tuesday, May 21, begins 7pm

Live & Local – John Mcrae – Friday, May 24, 6pm to 9pm

The Florida Orchestra – Tchaikovsky’s Violin Concerto – Friday, May 24, begins 8pm

Victoria’s School of Dance 22nd Annual Recital – Sunday, May 26, begins 1pm

On the Marquee at Tampa Theatre

Hail Satan? (2019) – Through Monday, May 20

MOSUL (2019) – Tuesday, May 21, 7:30pm to 9pm

Sustainable Business Awards – Wednesday, May 22, begins 6pm

Franklin Street Farmer’s Market – Friday, May 24, begins 5:30pm

The Biggest Little Farm (2019) – Friday, May 24 to Tuesday, June 4

Boyz n the Hood (1991) – Friday, May 24, 10:30pm to 12:30am

Joe Jackson: Four Decades Tour – Saturday, May 25, begins 8pm

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