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Tampa Bay seagrasses rebound, enhance water quality

After 20 years of planting beds of seagrasses and reducing environmental pollution, Tampa Bay's water quality and fish population on are the rebound. 

Tampa Bay Watch reports seagrasses are as robust as they were 60 years ago and are likely to continue to flourish.

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Tampa area homes priced under $250K in hot demand

It's a sellers market in the Tampa Bay region of Florida as buyers snatch up homes priced under $250K almost as fast as they can be listed. In some neighborhoods, like South Tampa, homes going for under $400K are also a hot commodity.

Sales are a reflection of the rebounding economy and pent-up demand. 

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St. Pete Pier design moves forward toward 2018 opening

A futuristic design for a community gathering place in downtown St. Pete to replace the old Pier won the hearts and minds of a majority of City Council members, clearing the way for negotiations to begin on the teardown and rebuild project.

The winning design team consists of ASD, Rogers Partners and Ken Smith Landscaping Architects.

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Global trade, travel unite Tampa Bay area business leaders

More than anytime in the Tampa Bay region's past, business and community leaders are looking to the future and seeing nothing but opportunities when it comes to trade and travel.

Increased flights into and out of local airports, including Tampa International, to Europe and Central and South America are driving the synergy, as is the prospect of more free trade with a variety of countries, including Cuba.

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St. Pete hones in on new design for pier

A city appointed selection committee ranked the Pier Park proposal highest for replacing St. Petersburg's famous tourist attraction and City Council members appear to be lining up behind it.

Second place went to Destination St. Pete Pier, a design that some observers think appears more creative, stable and sustainable over time. The full City Council will have the final say.

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Studio@620 showcases local rise of creative class

Now that Bob Devin Jones has set the pace for showcasing creatives in the Tampa Bay region, the master of all things creative is turning his attention to sustaining the Studio@620 stage in perpetuity.

Age and experience can hone one's vision like nothing else.

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What's next for Waterworks Park? Boat docks, kayak launch

The city of Tampa gets final approval from the U.S, Corps of Engineers to build boat docks and a kayak launch on the Hillsborough River next to Waterworks Park just north of downtown.

As a result, boaters will soon have better access to Ulele restaurant, the park and other nearby destinations.

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What a difference the Florida Aquarium makes in downtown Tampa

Community thought leaders who had the foresight to build the Florida Aquarium in downtown Tampa 20 years ago helped transform the city's future.

Tom Hall, a key player in getting the Aquarium built, speaks about what a difference that decision made.

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Check out what urban designers see coming to downtown Tampa

David Dixon and Jeff Speck, the two urban planners hired by Jeff Vinik and Strategic Property Partners to redesign the waterfront neighborhood surrounding Amalie Arena, talk about what they envision and why it matters as cities compete in the global marketplace for talent and innovation.

Vinik and SPP are investing more than $1 billion in the project.

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McDonald's tests automated order system in Florida

Want mushrooms on your Big Mac? Or mustard only? How about jalapenos? McDonald's customers in suburban Wesley Chapel, north of Tampa, are getting a chance to use a touchscreen computer to customize their own food orders, including an array of toppings not offered under traditional golden arches.

The automated system is used widely in European cities and is being tested in limited U.S. markets to see if it increases efficiency and customer satisfaction.

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Columnist outlines 10 critical goals for Tampa Bay region

The future prosperity of the Tampa Bay region depends on key decisions being made on 10 critical issues in need of solutions, according to a list compiled by Tampa Bay Times Columnist Robert Trigaux.

At the top of the list: transportation.

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South Hillsborough County restores valuable shoreline

A dredging and beach renourishment project funded primarily by corporate and private donations will soon make it easier to travel by water into and out of Apollo Beach in South Hillsborough County. 

The project, largely paid by donations from Mosaic, TECO Energy, civic groups and private citizens, should increase the value of property and make the neighborhood more attractive to boaters.

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Tampa-Hillsborough pursues grant to try driverless cars on local roads

The Tampa-Hillsborough Expressway Authority is going after federal funding to enable greater use of driverless cars on local roads.

The funding could make it possible for the Tampa Bay area to lead the nation in piloting the best options for the latest in high tech transportation.

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New section of Tampa Riverwalk opens in March

The Tampa Riverwalk continues to grow with the latest section opening at the end of March just in time for construction to move forward on another section.

When complete, the Riverwalk will curl around the downtown waterfront uninterrupted from the Tampa Port on the east to the Tampa Convention Center on the south up to Rick's on the River along the west. 

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For Good: Add $10M to USF in big year for Tampa Bay philanthropy

Chalk up another $10 million to the University of South Florida, this time in the form of a gift from alum Jordan Zimmerman who credits his alma mater for preparing him for the success that Zimmerman Advertising enjoys.

Zimmerman's donation is the latest of at least 5 other recent multimillion dollar gifts to USF.

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