Greater Tampa area a hot spot for development

LD&D, Universe, London Bay flex their Southwest Florida muscles

Here Are the Biggest Projects, Acquisitions in the Tampa Area
LD&D's Diego and Alejandro Bonet and Universe's Henry Manoucheri (LD&D, Universe, Getty)

South Florida isn’t the only area of The Sunshine State that is seeing surging development in the face of challenging market conditions.

The Greater Tampa area also has its share of high-dollar proposals and acquisitions in recent months, led by Miami-based LD&D, which announced a $200 million mixed-use downtown project.

Branded Cass Square, the development will include a 28-story luxury multifamily tower named DoMo, retail space and a hotel in partnership with Dynamic Group.

LD&D acquired the 2-acre parcel for $10 million last April, and selected Coastal Construction Group as the general contractor. 

The first phase of the development is expected to break ground this summer, beginning with DoMo. The building will include 360 apartments, more than 45,000 square feet of amenity space and 32,500 square feet of ground floor retail.

The residential tower, which will be the tallest in the area, will also have a wellness area, 10,000 square feet of co-working space, a pickleball court and a sky lounge on the 26th floor.

Across the universe

Los Angeles-based Universe last week paid $66 million for the 250-unit Pearce at Pavilion apartments at 3603 Pavilion Palms Circle in Riverview, roughly nine miles southeast of downtown Tampa Bay. 

The sale price breaks down to $264,000 per unit. 

As part of the deal, Universe assumed a Fannie Mae loan at a 4.13 percent interest rate with several years left until its maturity date. 

Properties with assumable debt are particularly attractive among investors in today’s market, amid high interest rates and tough lending standards. For Universe, the relatively low mortgage payment was a factor in its decision to buy.

It’s Universe’s first Florida acquisition and the firm plans to purchase other large multifamily properties in the Sunshine State over the next 12 to 24 months.

Ritz Carlton condos

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Earlier this month, London Bay secured $215 million in construction financing for The Ritz-Carlton Residences, Estero Bay South Tower, which is the first of a multi-phase condominium development located in Bonita Springs, just outside Tampa.

The property will be the first Ritz-Carlton Residences in Southwest Florida.

JLL represented London Bay to secure the loan through Bank OZK.

The South Tower will be 22 stories and feature two-, three- and four-bedroom residences, averaging 3,400 square feet and offering views of Estero Bay and the Gulf of Mexico. 

The property will offer about 36,000-square-feet of indoor amenities, including a wellness center with fitness, a yoga and Pilates studio, private training rooms and locker rooms. 

The tower will also have 8,000-square-feet of space for a lounge, private dining room, sports and news cafe, and wine and whiskey room. Outdoor amenities will include gardens and three pools. 

Land acquisition

Finally, LD&D and Black Salmon teamed in December to buy a nearly 0.8-acre parcel in St. Petersburg to make way for a $115 million, 251-unit mixed-use community.

LD&D and Black Salmon bought the property from Apogee Real Estate Partners. 

Plans call for a 23-story luxury multifamily building, called Gallery Gaus, at 155 17th Street South in the downtown corridor, encompassing more than 10,000 square feet of amenity, coworking space and 5,000 square feet of ground-floor retail.

The property is slated to break ground in late 2024.

Gallery Haus will be situated blocks from an array of restaurants, shops, museums, entertainment venues and the downtown waterfront area. Directly across is the Rays’ Tropicana Field, which will be redeveloped into a $6.5B mixed-use development and stadium in partnership with development firm Hines, the biggest redevelopment deal in Pinellas County history.