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Luxury apartments break ground in Skyway Marina District

Margie Manning

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Groundbreaking for the Addison at Skyway Marina

The latest project in the Skyway Marina District in southwest St. Petersburg will inject $55 million into the local economy.

The Addison at Skyway Marina, a 308-unit Class A rental apartment community, has hired a dozen design professionals and workers in 30 different trades, and will have about 100 workers a day onsite over the 23-month construction time — people who will spend money at local restaurants and shops — said Mark Ogier, president of ContraVest Development Partners, the Orlando developer behind the project.

That spending will continue after the project opens, by both ContraVest, which plans to operate and maintain the property, as well as by the 600 residents expected to live there, he said.

“I’m excited to be doing business in Pinellas County, in St. Petersburg and especially in the Skyway Marina District,” Ogier said during groundbreaking ceremonies Thursday morning at the site, a long-abandoned Kmart at 34th Street South and 38th Avenue.

“The district is concrete evidence that public and private initiatives can work and improve communities,” Ogier said.

The Addison at Skyway Marina is one of three major ongoing projects in the Skyway Marina District, joining Phillips Skyway Marina, a 300+ unit multi-family, mixed-use development, and the soon-to-be-completed Wawa.

“Everybody talks about downtown, but the real opportunity and the real gem for development and redevelopment is right here in the Skyway Marina District and along this corridor and south of Central Avenue,” said Mayor Rick Kriseman, a long-time proponent of development in the area.

The Addison will have three four-story buildings and two-story carriage buildings, along with a clubhouse, a “resort style” swimming pool, fitness center, business center, a dog park and other amenities, according to a description on the ContraVest website.

It’s billed as a luxury complex and comes amid wide-ranging calls for affordable housing units in St. Petersburg.

“We do have issues with housing affordability, but this also sends a message that’s important. Just because you live in south St. Pete doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be able to live in market rate or luxury housing,” Kriseman told the St. Pete Catalyst. “We don’t want any area of town to be where you focus a particular type of housing. The best communities have a mix of housing throughout them. They have low income, they have working class and they have luxury. There is a need for luxury housing in south St. Pete as there is a need for affordable housing throughout St. Pete. So I think this goes to creating that mix.”

Affordable housing remains a vital part of the housing mix sought by Pinellas County, said County Commissioner Ken Welch. He’s also on the board of Forward Pinellas, a land use and transportation planning agency, and said that that agency amended its county-wide plan on Wednesday.

“A vital component of that is a diversity of housing and having the density in the right places to support transit. This checks off a couple of those boxes. It’s got the density. It’s on a main transit route. We’re going to be talking about Complete Streets on US 19, bus rapid transit, so there are a lot of different components,” Welch said. “But affordable housing is a component that never goes away. Just because it’s not in this particular development, it is in other developments all around the city and around south St. Pete.”

Addison at Skyway Marina

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ContraVest broke ground Thursday morning on the Addison at Skyway Marina.

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9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Evelyn Rhodes

    July 11, 2019 at 3:38 pm

    Please stop building apartment complexes that only the rich can afford. What are you all trying to do? Run the less fortunate out of St. Petersburg all together. God, is not pleased with the way the less fortunate is being treated and you have a lot of people who was born and raised in St. Petersburg and can’t even afford to live here anymore, but I refuse to be ran out of my hometown!

    • Avatar

      Denise Lattimore

      July 12, 2019 at 7:54 am

      I totally agree with you Evelyn. I am tired of the LUXURY APARTMENTS that NO ONE can afford but the people that they want!

  2. Avatar

    Mike P

    July 11, 2019 at 9:36 pm

    I’ve lived in St. Pete for 30 years, and I am a south side home owner. This is a giant step forward for the south side and St. Pete in general. There is a ton of potential for growth and this is a great opportunity to help dissolve the negative connotations associated with south St. Pete. Keep up the good work

  3. Avatar

    Debra Holzworth

    July 12, 2019 at 8:53 am

    Please don’t state affordable housing when you say this will meet that need. Money Money Money and Greed. I happy to see progress, but not call it by Fake title needs.
    We love the idea of progress and cleanup in our area. Just be honest and for every luxury a reasonable housing project needs to be started!

  4. Avatar

    Joe K

    July 12, 2019 at 9:45 am

    I recently moved to the Skyway Marina District with the hope that my home purchase would translate into a ground-floor opportunity to get in at a great price, do work on the property to make it nice, and thereby allow my home to increase in value due to the focus on the Skyway Marina Districts plan of further developing the area (such as getting rid of those seedy motels, the sex store and the run down buildings, closed businesses and vacant lots). Our homes are our greatest investment, regardless of how much home we can afford. If we maintain our properties well and take pride in our neighborhoods, we will all benefit from the development. For those that have lived in the area for many years, this is a golden opportunity for your home to appreciate in value. Just continue to take care of it by keeping it nice, neat and in repair. Look at this wonderful gift and embrace it. Blessings

    • Avatar

      Mike P

      July 12, 2019 at 9:52 pm

      Well said Joe, there are a lot of desirable traits the Skyway district offers. It is important to attract wealth to the area to stimulate the local economy. These projects are important steps and the entire community will benefit if progress isn’t stymied

  5. Avatar

    Lyn Pierce

    July 12, 2019 at 5:29 pm

    We don’t need my more apartments st Pete is overbuilt noe

  6. Avatar

    D! CRAWFORD

    July 13, 2019 at 12:26 pm

    Hey all you so called land developers leave the SOUTHSIDE alone. It was the only place where African Americans were allowed to live. Gibbs was our only high school. We have history and memories here. You’re not helping people or the environment. You’re helping yourself. You don’t have a care about the SOUTHSIDE or it’s preservation. Now that you’ve finally realized that the SOUTHSIDE of St Petersburg is beautiful, you want to come change it. We don’t want you here. Go improve something else. I’m sure there’s opportunity for you to get richer elsewhere! GET OUT!!!;

  7. Avatar

    Charles C

    July 15, 2019 at 8:06 am

    The negative comments are amazing; I assume the naysayers prefer a dilapidated and empty K-Mart is better for the neighborhood than any development!

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