Tampa from the Porch at the University of Tampa

The City of Tampa receives Four Planning Commission Planning & Design Awards

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The City of Tampa received four (4) Planning & Design Awards, presented at the Hillsborough County City-County Planning Commission’s 38th Annual Planning & Design Awards virtual event. The awards program is a well-respected tradition that honors projects contributing to a better quality of life in our community and serving as models to learn from and emulate. Judging criteria includes factors like quality of life benefit, innovation, comprehensiveness, education, transferability and more.

Lift Up Local Economic Recovery Plan | Executive Director’s Award

In response to COVID-19 restaurant interior capacity limits, the City of Tampa implemented the Lift Up Local Economic Recovery Plan, temporarily allowing bars, restaurants, and retail businesses to establish outdoor capacity on adjacent privately-owned and public spaces suspending certain code and permit requirements. 

“Small businesses are the backbone of our economy. To protect our workforce and community, we provided our local business owners as many tools and as much space as possible to safely serve guests,” said Mayor Jane Castor.  

Ybor City Vision 2020 Master Plan | Award of Merit in Planning Category

Ybor City Development Corporation’s Vision 2020 Plan, produced by Vanasse Hangen Brustlin, Inc. (VHB), detailed recommendations and strategies to protect the National Historic Landmark District, while also enhancing the area for residents, employees and visitors. VHB used community feedback to better understand current desires and accommodate the anticipated growth, revealing demand for open spaces, grocery stores, pharmacies, sporting goods stores and bookstores.

“Community input was imperative throughout the process to bring both the wants and needs of the community to the forefront,” said Ybor City CRA Manager Courtney Orr. “Ybor City is such a vibrant area to grow a business, and we want more business owners to see that.” 

Urban 360 by Domain Homes: City of Tampa Infill Housing Redevelopment Project by Domain Homes | Award of Outstanding Contribution to the Community in Housing & Redevelopment Categories

The City of Tampa, Hillsborough County and Tampa Housing Authority worked together to develop an Assessment of Fair Housing Impediments, which generated several actions to address the growth of RE/CAP (Racially and Ethnically Concentrated Areas of Poverty) areas. The Urban 360: City of Tampa Infill Housing Redevelopment Project has accounted for 50% of all new construction in East Tampa from 2018 through July of 2020. Homes were built at an average sales price of $200,000 within the East Tampa market. The median price of homes in East Tampa is now $170,000 which is 37% more affordable than the median sales price throughout the City of Tampa at $272,000, increased wealth for surrounding homeowners, and increased the tax base for the East Tampa CRA by over $16M. The project resulted in 96 lots back on the tax rolls, mortgages payments lower than the average one-bedroom rental unit, increased the median income of homeowners in East Tampa, and expanded the market making in-fill lots more attractive.

“The In-Fill Housing project met all of the expected objectives and created a model for how the City can engage better with both nonprofit and for-profit developers to make Tampa an inclusive, equitable and sustainable community for our residents to live, work and play,” said Housing & Community Development Manager Vanessa McCleary

Madison Street Park | Award of Excellence in Entertainment & Redevelopment Categories

The 43,000-square-foot Madison Street Park, located in the City of Tampa Channelside District, maximizes limited space to add green space for activities and enjoyment of the downtown district. Utilizing community feedback throughout the entire design process, the space supports the live-work-play lifestyle of surrounding residents and stakeholders.  The park was designed with a modern industrial feel to pay tribute to the area’s industrial past and features a pavilion, shuffleboard court, dog park, shade structure, climbing structure, and more. 

“Our Parks & Recreation team is dedicated to providing a quality park system that meets the community’s needs for recreation and learning opportunities,” said Sherisha Hills, City is Tampa Parks & Recreation Director. “The success and functionality of this unique space really speaks to the valuable feedback and engagement we received from our residents.”