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Places This Week: Gateway Market Center redesign; Affordable housing in Skyway District

Veronica Brezina



A rendering of the proposed gathering space at the renovated Gateway Market Center. Rendering: InvenTrust Properties.

A weekly roundup of local real estate deals. 


Plans progress for Gateway Market Center redesign and expansion 

Newly filed plans show the owner of the Gateway Market Center is planning to construct five new buildings. 

The Gateway Market Center at 7751-8229 9th St. N. is one of the largest shopping centers in St. Petersburg. It’s anchored by Target and Publix Super Market. 

Engineering firm Kimley-Horn filed an application for stormwater permits on behalf of its client InvenTrust Properties Corp., a real estate investment trust that has owned the shopping center since 2010.

The application states the proposed project consists of the new buildings, associated parking areas, stormwater system, utilities and the redesign of a portion of the existing buildings within the 47-acre retail plaza. 

InvenTrust Properties declined to comment on the new project details. However, last year, the owners told the St. Pete Catalyst they would renovate the center in 2022. 

A rendering showing the proposed outparcel buildings at Gateway Market Center on 9th Street North. Image: InvenTrust Properties. 

At that time, InvenTrust said about 60,000 square feet of the existing building area will be demolished and several new buildings will be constructed.

The two new anchor-sized buildings would be developed at the center and three new buildings for small shop tenants and restaurants will be added, according to InvenTrust’s plans from last year. 

The work is expected to take about 18 months to complete.

The shopping center recently added two new stores, HomeGoods and Five Below, which replaced Office Depot.

A lease for another major tenant, Beall’s, expired this January and the tenant will not continue their lease, Dave Joss, the company’s vice president of development and construction, previously said. 


Affordable housing project opens in Skyway Marina District

The new 65-unit SkyWay Lofts affordable housing development in the Skyway Marina District officially starts welcoming its new residents today (Friday, Feb. 11). 

SkyLofts, at 3900 34th St. S., will serve households earning less than 80% of the Area Median Income (AMI), with the majority of the units priced at $762 per month for a one-bedroom apartment and $901 per month for a two-bedroom apartment.

A rendering of SkyWay Lofts in the SkyWay Marina District. Image: Blue Sky Communities. 

Tampa-based Blue Sky Communities, which develops affordable housing across the state, is the developer of the project.  

All of the apartment units are equipped with multiple energy-efficient features. Amenities include a clubroom, a fitness center and an on-site laundry facility, according to its description. 

“With rising rents throughout the region, state and nation, it is more important now than ever to ensure our residents have access to quality, safe, affordable housing. With price points serving those at 80% of the area median income, these new units will serve teachers, health care workers, first responders, retail workers and others who make our community work,” St. Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch said in a press release.

“And with energy-efficient features in each unit, these homes will offer tenants additional opportunities to keep more of their hard-earned paychecks.” 

Construction started in 2020. 

The City of St. Petersburg, Pinellas County, Florida Housing Finance Corporation, TIAA Bank, Raymond James Bank and Raymond James Tax Credit Funds provided funding for the project. 


An 11-acre Tarpon Springs estate sells in a $2.6 million deal 

A Tarpon Springs estate on an 11-acre lot that’s surrounded by giant oak trees has sold in a $2.6 million deal. 

The property, described as a “Horse Paradise,” boasts trails, gated pastures and a six-stall barn. 

The estate at 710 East Lake Drive in Tarpon Springs. Photo provided by Viewpoint Realty Int’l Inc. /Florida Visual Marketing.

At the heart of the property is the 5,276-square-foot home at 710 East Lake Drive.

The home was built in 1987 and features four bedrooms and four-and-a-half bathrooms. 

The front entrance of the home. Photo provided by Viewpoint Realty Int’l Inc./Florida Visual Marketing.

Inside the grand entrance, a spiral staircase greets guests. The original characteristics of the home such as the green carpet, wood and tile flooring are carried throughout. 

The living room features a fireplace and three sets of French doors to the pool area. Adjacent to the living room is a large office and library with a wood ceiling and built-in shelving.

Outside, there’s a screen-enclosed lanai and saltwater pool with a separate heated spa, along with an outdoor kitchen and full bath. 

The screened-in lanai and pool area. Photo provided by Viewpoint Realty Int’l Inc./Florida Visual Marketing.

The home also features a three-car garage and a stall barn, which is equipped with a tack room, wash racks and a covered patio. The listing states there is an additional 800-square-foot garage bay/workshop building. 

The listing also advertises the views the property offers of the Cypress Run Golf Course and the close proximity to the Lake Frances Nature Preserve and horse training facilities. 

Joan Poppleton with Viewpoint Realty Int’l Inc. represented the buyer and seller. 

The names of the buyer and seller were requested but not disclosed. 

The home was listed with an asking price of $2.8 million. It was last sold in 1989 for $550,000.

An aerial image of the home. Photo provided by Viewpoint Realty Int’l Inc./Florida Visual Marketing.

Madeira Beach hotel property sells 

William Karns Enterprises Inc., headed by Bill Karns, has purchased several parcels of land within the Madeira Beach Town Center that are slated for a mixed-use hotel development. 

Karns, a prominent Treasure Island developer who is behind the Madeira Beach Town Center, bought the parcels, under the entity Madeira Triangle Properties, in a $13.5 million deal. 

The triangular-shaped property is between Madeira Way and Madeira Beach Town Center. 

A planned hotel referred to as “Hotel B” is included in the sale, Karns said. 

The plans for the hotel are part of the town center’s 2017 master plan. Karns said the existing shops and restaurants within the purchased property would be demolished for the new mixed-use hotel development. 

He said plans call for 40,000 square feet of retail and two floors of elevated parking. The hotel would operate on floors four through seven. Luxury condo units would be built on the eighth floor. 

He added that an elevated pedestrian bridge would be built above the street, connecting hotel guests to the beach. 


Crabby Bill’s founder takes over competing business 

The family behind the Crabby Bill’s restaurant business is taking over the JD’s Restaurant and Lounge in Indian Rocks Beach. 

Crabby Bill’s Owner Matt Loder Sr. purchased the restaurant at 125 Gulf Blvd. in a $3.2 million deal that closed this month, according to Pinellas County public records. 

Loder said his family and the Downings, who run JD’s, share a friendly rivalry as the two families both serve up seafood in the local area. 

“Over the course of the pandemic, our ties got closer,” Loder explained. “They could’ve sold this to anyone but they chose us. We like the business for us and it’s right in our market.”

With Crabby Bill’s founder Matt Loder Sr. at the center, the Loder family, along with the family and team behind JD’s Restaurant, pose in front of JD’s. Photo provided.

The Downing family was not immediately available for comment, but the family (Jackie, Jay, Kip and Leslie) wrote on the restaurant’s website, “We are honored to continue the family business and legacy of JD’s as a Crabby Bill’s Family Brand. Our respect for them as well as what they have built will be evident in our operations of JD’s now, as [we] take the time after all the years to rest and enjoy life from the other side of the table.” 

The family also said the big corporations in the marketplace have absorbed the mom-and-pop businesses across the country and that part of the heart of entrepreneurship has dissipated. 

The Downing family first bought the 5,605-square-foot restaurant site in 1985 when it was O’Neil’s on the Rocks.

Loder said the JD’s Restaurant name will remain. Loder may pursue renovations or minor changes to the restaurant. 

Read the full story here. 

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