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Places This Week: Shore Acres estate sells for $6M; Backfin closes

Veronica Brezina

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The estate at 3119 Bayshore Blvd. NE, St. Petersburg. Realtor.com.

A weekly roundup of local real estate deals.

 

Shore Acres home sells for over $6 million

The 6,482-square-foot home at 3119 Bayshore Blvd. NE in St. Petersburg has sold for over $6 million. 

The estate at 3119 Bayshore Blvd. NE, St. Petersburg. Realtor.com.

The seven-bedroom, seven-and-half-bathroom home was built in 2015 and has a contemporary modern architectural style. 

The estate has high ceilings and large windows overlooking the waterfront in the Shore Acres neighborhood. 

The estate at 3119 Bayshore Blvd. NE, St. Petersburg. Realtor.com.

It offers a full butler’s kitchen, Bosch appliances and hurricane-rated impact windows. Solar panels and a new pool were added to the home in 2021. There’s also rooftop access with open water views and downtown St. Pete’s skyline, according to the listing. 

The estate at 3119 Bayshore Blvd. NE, St. Petersburg. Realtor.com.

The home was designed by Jimmy Brattain with Design Works. 

The seller was represented by Nick Janovsky with Premier Sotheby’s International Realty and the buyer was represented by Terry Tillung with Coldwell Banker Realty.

It last sold in 2008 for $852,500.

 

Backfin closes in Gulfport

After serving the community for decades, The Backfin Blue Cafe, at 2913 Beach Blvd. S, has permanently closed. 

“After 25 wonderful years in the Gulfport Waterfront District, Backfin Blue Cafe has closed our Gulfport location. Thank you to all our friends, customers and staff that have shown so much support and created so many memories. Follow us on Facebook for future plans and events,” Backfin Blue Cafe announced in a Facebook post

Backfin Blue Cafe in Gulfport. Facebook image.

The local spot was known for its jumbo lump crab cakes, corn crab chowder, macadamia nut-crusted mahi-mahi and other seafood dishes. 

The building the restaurant operated in was a refurbished 1927 cottage with a wood-burning fireplace. 

 

Black Rifle Coffee Co. to open a second local shop

The Black Rifle Coffee Company, known for hiring veterans, is planning to open another coffee outlet in Pinellas County.

A Black Rifle Coffee Company storefront. Image provided.

The Salt Lake City, Utah-based chain recently filed plans for its first-ever Pinellas County shop in Tarpon Springs and has now filed an application for another site in Clearwater.

BRCC will convert the 2,659-square-foot space at 4355 East Bay Drive in Clearwater, formerly used by Pizza Hut, into a coffee shop with a drive-thru location.

Other coffee brands are also expanding locally. 

The St. Petersburg-founded Kahwa Coffee company announced it will be opening a new location on the University of South Florida’s St. Pete campus.

The new café will be housed inside the University Student Center at 200 6th Ave. South. It’s scheduled to open this summer. 

 

Development Review Commission reviews pivotal projects 

This week, the St. Petersburg Development Review Commission has reviewed two sizeable projects in the works – The Julia, a proposed 18-story apartment tower, and NJR Development’s project called Castille Urbana, a 40-unit condominium building. 

On Wednesday, the DRC unanimously voted to defer and add special conditions for the Castille Urbana development, which would be built at 610 3rd Ave. S., near its other project underway, Domus Urbana.  

The $12.5 million project, approved by the Community Redevelopment Agency in June, was going before the DRC as it was seeking a FAR (floor area ratio) bonus. It is also facing an appeal.  

While the team addressed the concerns introduced in the appeal, DRC member Charles Flynt made negative remarks about the property that will, ultimately, be nearly identical to its sister property next door.

“When I looked at this site and saw the building that’s under construction [Domus Urbana], I’m like, ‘this is the same building. They’ve perfected the art of designing a box and slapping some metal patios on it,’” Flynt said, saying the premise of the project is to make it “as cheap as humanly possible.”

If the DRC granted the appeal, NJR’s application would be denied. The DRC members said the deferral could allow the developer to come to a mutual agreement with the group that filed an appeal. 

During the same meeting, the DRC also reviewed and denied a site plan modification in the number of floor area ratio [FAR] bonuses to 5.0 for a planned hi-rise called The Julia, named after one of developer Peter Francis’ daughters. It would be built at the southwest corner of 4th Avenue and 1st Street North in a vacant narrow corner lot west of the historic Flori de Leon apartment building. 

The site was once eyed for the Bezu development, a 24-story condo tower, which the city council denied. It was also previously planned to become the Blue Lotus. It was then modified to become The Julia, with 20 condo units; however, the developer is once again altering the plans to convert the condo units into 36 apartments, or three units per floor.

Multiple issues were cited by the DRC members and public speakers that primarily focused on the large scale on the project on the tight site. 

 

Trop talk

St. Petersburg residents are invited to weigh in on the future redevelopment of the Historic Gas Plant District site.

St. Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch announced the city will host community engagement sessions to hear what residents would like to see at the 86-acre site, home to the Tropicana Field baseball stadium.

The first community meeting will be held Tuesday, July 12 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the Foundation for a Healthy St. Pete, located in the Lakeview Shopping Center at 2333 34th St. South.

“Equitable redevelopment of the Historic Gas Plant District must respond to current economic conditions, challenges and questions facing our St. Petersburg community. Public engagement is a key component in ensuring we are responding to residents’ needs. I look forward to the opportunity to hear from you about this generational project,” Welch said in the city’s news alert.

Additional community engagement sessions will be held July 19 at the St. Petersburg College-Gibbs campus and July 28 at the University of South Florida’s St. Petersburg campus.

The launch of the community engagement sessions comes after Welch decided to restart the Request for Proposals process in selecting a master developer for the redevelopment of the site. 

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