Latest Trend: Moving To Downtown Tampa

Survey says: Housing is up in downtown Tampa.

According to a survey done by the Tampa Downtown Partnership, 85 percent of downtown Tampa's residential offerings are full, necessitating further construction, including additional units at Metro 510 on downtown's north end, 360 new apartments planned for the Channelside District and a recent report that the Towers of Channelside are down to five available units. In addition, ENCORE! has broken ground on its first residential development for elderly residents.

Paul Ayres, the Partnership's director of marketing & business development, confirms that while the survey reflects an increase in occupancy for both rental and owned properties, it doesn't break down along those variables. 

"A few things are going on," says Ayres. "You have traditionally sold products but then there are mixtures where you have units sold and then blocks that were sold by third parties who rented them out. So it's really hard to say that there's a good understanding of what is what. But if you look at what's going on nationally, we are doing exceptionally well. If you look at Towers, their numbers reflect the percentage of increase in occupancy alone."

Jerome Ryans of the Tampa Housing Authority says the upward trend downtown may be a sign of general economic improvement.

"I've never had the impression that the numbers were that good, but the numbers are getting better. And I think that's because the economy is turning around,'' Ryan says. "I still think foreclosures are high. I would suspect that the survey numbers are up because the economy is heading in the right direction."

Writer: Missy Kavanaugh
Sources: Paul Ayres, Tampa Downtown Partnership; Jerome Ryans, Tampa Housing Authority

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