Tampa's Channelside District Undergoes Upgrades, Widens Sidewalks

Tampa's Channelside District is undergoing more changes to provide municipal features that urban dwellers find desirable in their communities.

A stormwater drainage system is being installed on York Street that will remove sediment and trash before the water is emptied into the Ybor Channel. Stormwater drainage improvements will continue on Washington Street, where pipelines are being upgraded. The Washington Street project is also widening sidewalks and narrowing roads to improve pedestrian safety.

The projects are part of the Channel District Strategic Action Plan initiated by the City of Tampa to guide growth in the Channel District to create a strong, urban neighborhood that emphasizes design quality for private development and public spaces.

According to Urban Development Manager Bob McDonaugh, the action plan is Tampa's response to national trends. "When I was growing up, people would move to where the jobs were. Today a lot of employers will locate to cities that have people who employers will want to employ. What we're seeing in the Channelside District is that residents want an urban environment."

McDonaugh feels Tampa is well-positioned to become a strong magnet for talented professionals. "We'll be one of the only cities in the world with high-speed rail," he says. Orlando and Tampa airports fly to basically anywhere in the world. If you have someone who has to travel domestically or internationally, Tampa is the place to live. We're adding pocket parks, public art and dog parks. These are the types of things urban residents want."

"Many of the people moving to this area are environmentally conscious," McDonaugh continues. "The stormwater projects are vital to protecting the environment and our goals."

Writer: Missy Kavanaugh
Source: Bob McDonaugh, City of Tampa
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