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Developers propose $120M alternative vision for 800 Block in St. Pete

Veronica Brezina

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A rendering of Trammell’s proposed residential project on the 800 block. The rendering was provided by Trammell.

Texas-based Trammell Crow Residential, one of the largest multifamily developers in the U.S., proposes to turn the city-owned 800 Block into a $120 million apartment complex. 

The group submitted a proposal to the City of St. Petersburg as the city had to open the solicitation process for the property following an unsolicited bid from the Moffitt Cancer Center, as first reported by the St. Pete Catalyst.  The group’s proposal is one of five new proposals submitted to the city vying for the site at 800 1st Ave. S. 

“We have been searching for sites in St. Pete over the past couple of months. This is a complete block of land and when the notice was issued, it triggered and expedited our process,” said Seven Epps, vice president of development for the Southeast division.

“The big component of the project is the high percent of workforce housing. Usually, you would see only 10% of workforce housing units in projects and this has 30%,” he said.

The development would have 120 workforce housing apartments. Apartments for those earning the area’s median income would make up 30% of the units, and the remaining 70% would be 280 market-rate apartment units.

The presentation shows five floors of the residential units that would range from studios (roughly 600 square feet) to one- and two-bedroom units, ranging from 750 square feet to 1,100 square feet. 

Epps described the apartments as having a “modern elegance style” with quartz countertops in kitchens, modern appliances and vinyl flooring. The complex would also offer residents amenities such as a resort-style pool, a pet spa, a “hammock garden” and electric car-charging stations. 

The prices for the units were not included due to the fluctuation in market rates, Epps said. 

The development would also include 11,000 square feet of ground-floor retail space and a public/private parking garage.   

The site plan. The photo is provided by Trammell.

Although a parking garage would not be required, TCR wants a parking element to complement the project. 

TCR would utilize 2.51 acres of the site for the development, which it says it would allow the City of St. Petersburg to keep 2nd Ave. S. open to other development opportunities and maintain the city’s grid system.

“This will also be beneficial as the plans for the Tropicana redevelopment progress, allowing future access directly to the development,” the group wrote in its proposal. 

This development would be the group’s first project in St. Pete. Epps said the goal is to close on the site in the next 10 to 12 months with completion in mid-2023. 

TCR is active in the Central Florida and Tampa market. Its properties include the Alexan Grove apartments in Tampa, and the Alexan Winter Park, Alexan Crossroads and others in the Orlando region.

TCR is working with civil engineering firm Kimley-Horn out of its St. Pete office. 

The group has multiple offices, with the office in Atlanta handling the Florida properties; however, the group may open an office in St. Pete to establish its roots. 

Epps said the group is planning other developments in the Tampa Bay area. 

Inside the unsolicited offer Moffitt made 

Moffitt Cancer Center and a master developer desire to purchase the site to create a cancer care facility, a residential tower, and a potential future building for St. Pete-based UPC, known as United Insurance Holdings Corp. (NASDAQ: UIHC). 

The development group’s site plan. City of St. Pete documents.

The city received the $5 million unsolicited offer several weeks ago from the group and thus, then had to open the floor to other prospects interested in the site. 

The breakdown of the entire project: 

  • A 75,000-square-foot, three-story outpatient cancer care medical building
  • A 30-story, 350-unit residential tower which will include a workforce housing component and at least 10% of ground-floor retail 
  • A public-access parking garage with an anticipated minimum of 500 parking spaces
  • A potential 14-story hotel development 

A significant factor of the unsolicited proposal is Moffitt’s penetration in the downtown St. Pete market. It would allow St. Pete residents to have a direct connection to Moffitt providers and services – an asset not otherwise available within the city’s current outpatient facilities, according to the offer letter. 

Thursday in the Catalyst: for information on the other four proposals that were submitted to the city. The city is in the process of reviewing them. 

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Michael Baptista

    September 15, 2021at5:16 pm

    I think the Moffitt bid makes more sense. I live on 6th st s. There is more than enough workforce housing around here quite a bit some of them aren’t the big fancy apartment places that are been built here recently but a lot of little neighborhood 30 40 and 10 unit places.
    Downtown needs more commercial businesses so people can live and work here and not commute to Tampa or the Pinellas county commercial centers

  2. Avatar

    Corbin Supak

    September 15, 2021at6:13 pm

    No parking or car charging please. We need less driving, not more.

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