Tampa Downtown Partnership CEO to retire this year

Tampa Downtown Partnership CEO Christine Burdick is retiring at the end of this year, the group announced Wednesday.

Burdick will stay on until Dec. 31 and will focus on special projects, while Chief Operating Officer Lynda Remund will help with day-to-day operations.

“Christine has been an integral part of the growth and success of the Tampa Downtown Partnership over the past 15 years,” said Mickey Jacob, chairman of Tampa Downtown Partnership. “Through her thoughtfulness and vision she has been a strong, daring, and respected leader in this community who has taken the partnership to such great heights and phenomenal success. The impact of her work will touch the lives of everyone in downtown Tampa for generations to come.”

The partnership launched the popular Downtowner last year. It’s a free app-based ride service in downtown Tampa that uses an electric carts and cars to connect riders to their destinations. In its first seven months, the service provided more than 100,000 rides, prompting the partnership to add four Chevy Bolts to its fleet of 12 electric carts to increase capacity as riders were waiting for as long as a half hour to use the service.

The partnership created the service as a solution to the common first-mile/last-mile problems associated with public transportation. It gives an option for people to use alternative means of transportation to visit downtown to go to a restaurant or show.

“It has been my honor to serve this city for so many years and incredible to see its growth and change,” said Burdick. “This is the right time to step aside. I’m excited to see how Tampa’s next generation of leaders will continue to be the passionate and dedicated advocates for our downtown. I’m truly looking forward to experiencing all the wonderful services and programs we’ve implemented over the years.”

Burdick has served as CEO of the partnership since 2002. Under her leadership, the group also helped implement the Coast Bike Share program in and around downtown as well as revitalize Curtis Hixon Downtown Waterfront Park and relocate the Tampa Museum of Art. Burdick also helped lead the city of Tampa’s InVision Tampa Masterplan and the launch of the Streetcar and Winter Village.

Burdick is a member of the Urban Land Institute, the International Council of Shopping Centers and the International Downtown Association. She serves as a trustee of the University of Tampa Preparatory School and as a board member of the Florida Aquarium and the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce.

The Tampa Downtown Partnership has not yet identified a replacement.