New design details for Sparkman Wharf in Water Street Tampa

Strategic Property Partners’ vision for the future development of Sparkman Wharf continues to showcase the mixed-use complex’s connection to downtown Tampa's waterfront.

Ten-thousand square feet of private outdoor terraces facing Garrison Channel and expansive windows around the second-floor office space will offer impressive views of the waterfront, says Sam Stein, SPP’s development manager.

In another move to open up the view of the waterfront, this summer construction crews will replace the existing security fencing that separates the complex’s lawn from the wharf with collapsible fencing.

Sparkman Wharf opened in late 2018 with 10 eateries in converted shipping containers painted with murals, an outdoor Biergarten, and the recreational lawn.

The phase of construction now underway will transform the building at the former Channelside Bay Plaza into a retail and office hub. The renovated ground floor will have 65,000 square feet of space for approximately 10 retail businesses, while the second floor will have 150,000 square feet of office space. A two-story lobby along Channelside Drive will be a central entrance to the new office space.

The first businesses may move in before the end of 2019.

“This will be a phased construction project, and we anticipate gradual move-ins and openings for both the retail and office starting as early as the fourth quarter of 2019,” Stein says. “That having been said, we are targeting to deliver retail spaces to tenants starting in the fourth quarter of 2019 with anticipated openings starting early in the second quarter of 2020. We plan to deliver office space to tenants starting in the first quarter of 2020. Of the 10 or so retail spaces along the ground floor, we have received a great deal of interest from tenants ranging from fast-casual and fine dining to fitness use.”

SPP will be one of the businesses setting up shop. The developer of Sparkman Wharf and the adjacent multi-billion dollar Water Street Tampa district will relocate to 30,000-square-foot office space by the end of 2019.

“The office space at Sparkman Wharf will be a game-changer for the Tampa Bay market and will introduce an entirely new working environment that is unlike anything else in the city,” SPP CEO James Nozar says in a written statement. “As the first new office space that we’re opening in the neighborhood, Sparkman Wharf will provide employers and employees with a well-rounded lifestyle that reflects what Water Street Tampa is all about: access to a variety of dining options, a premium waterfront location and regular programming within the park.”

SPP plans to target “creative and innovation-oriented tenants” with loft-like designs that include 40-foot-high ceilings, waterfront views, natural lighting, and the outdoor terrace space. Businesses that lease office space will also have private and secure on-site bike storage and facilities with showers to encourage biking or walking to work.

Pedestrian improvements in and around Sparkman Wharf will include new paving, landscaping, streetscape furniture, and awnings and canopies outside retail businesses. Already, SPP and the City of Tampa have added refuge medians, flashing beacons, and additional signage to the crosswalks along Channelside Drive and narrowed the width of travel lanes to slow traffic, Stein says.

The ongoing construction and renovation will modernize the entire building with a new roof, structural upgrades, improvements to the stucco façade, and new mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems.

Read more articles by Christopher Curry.

Chris Curry is a freelance writer living in Clearwater. Chris spent more than 15 years as a newspaper reporter, primarily in Ocala and Gainesville, before moving back home to the Tampa Bay Area. He enjoys our local music scene, great weather and the wealth of outdoor festivals.
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