Urban Land Institute: Better Connect River To Downtown Tampa

The Urban Land Institute (ULI) recently published the ULI Advisory Services Panel's recommendations for developing downtown Tampa's urban neighborhoods.

Made up of experts in economic and real estate development, land use and government operations from cities around the nation, the ULI Advisory Panel was sought out by Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn to assist in developing a vision and master plan for downtown.

“Our urban core is long overdue for activity,” Buckhorn says.

Outlining Tampa's opportunities, challenges and development strategies, the 40-page report addresses connectivity and implementation of plans. Some of the questions the Advisory Panel addressed: How can the city maximize its connections to the Riverwalk? What can be done to strengthen the connections between neighborhoods? Where are the most critical pedestrian and bicycle connections?

Among the improvements suggested by the ULI Advisory Panel is an immediate enhancement of landscaping gateways into the downtown; completion of the Riverwalk on both sides of the Hillsborough River to strengthen connections to Bayshore; reinforcement of the continuation and completion of projects already underway in downtown neighborhoods, including the ENCORE! Project; and focusing new development activities on diverse housing offerings in and around Tampa Heights, North Boulevard Homes and the Marion Street Transit Station.

“The desired outcome of this project is a blueprint for present development and for the future of Tampa's urban core,” says Bob McDonaugh, the city's economic and urban development director. “There has never been as much interest in living and working in Tampa as there is right now, so it's important that we have a sustainable plan to guide us through this growth period and into our future.”

A copy of the full report can be viewed here.

Writer: Alexis Quinn Chamberlain
Source: Mayor Bob Buckhorn and Bob McDonaugh, City of Tampa
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