The Tampa City Council voted Thursday night to rezone Central Park Village for a mixed-use development of 1200 for-sale condos, 800 mixed-income rentals, office towers, and small, ground-level businesses.

Although the vote was unanimous, it wasn’t all clear sailing.

Stan Davis was there and filed this report.

[Running Time: 6:27]


Out from the ashes of CIVITAS…

… A new proposal to re-use the land now occupied by 483 below-poverty-level residents of Tampa Housing Authority public housing.

For the time being, it’s still known as the Central Park Village Project. Where those 483 people are going to be put, no one’s saying…

… although the Housing Authority—a 50-50 partner with Bank of America on this project –claimed under oath last night that if someone wants to live in the new development they can.

The developers were at a public hearing Thursday night, petitioning for rezoning so that they can get started putting the financial package together.

The rezoning waiver issues were read into the record by the office of Land Planning…

[roll tape…]

[Actuality 1-Abby Feely tree canopy- “The petitioner is asking for 7 waivers… adopted by council�]

After it was established that the developer had promised to transplant some trees into the adjacent Perry Harvey Park, the hearing moved on.

David Smith, a representative of the developers, presented the grand vision to the Council and public using a Powerpoint slide show. But he didn’t get far. Councilwoman Linda Saul-Sena had some questions…

[roll tape… ]

[Actuality 2-Saul-Sena- “As I look at the plan…and I was hoping to regain with this redevelopment opportunity.�]

And then up came the city’s Urban Design Manager, Wilson A. Stair…

[roll tape…]

[Actuality 3- Stair 1- “… for the most part, the petitioner… financially why they can’t do it.�]

Councilman Sean Harrison, trying to get the Development train back on the track, posed his own question to Wilson Stair…

[roll tape… ]

[Actuality 4- Harrison- “So, the grid system, while… thank you, honest answer.�]

And Saul-Sena wasn’t about to let go either. This time, though, it wasn’t pedestrian connectivity, it was—maybe –an issue of subtle segregation…

[roll tape… ]

[Actuality 5- Saul-Sena- “…Looking at the three high-rise blocks… and that’s not good urban planning.�]

No matter what Smith said, he could not satisfy Saul-Sena’s qualms, particularly because he refused to commit to any definite plan until AFTER the Council waived the zoning restrictions.

And that led to a three-way between Saul-Sena, Smith, and Councilman John Dingfelder…

[roll tape]

[Actuality 6- Saul-Sena- “… Is there access… and that’s creating a little problem.�]

At this point, Bank of America Senior Vice President, Roxanne Amaroso stepped up to plate. She had something to say…

[roll tape]

[Actuality 7- Amorosa- “Our mission is for… to apply for financing.�]

Saul-Sena had this to say…

[roll tape]

[Actuality 8- Saul-Sena- “… this is a huge deal… we’re gonna vote on it tonight.�]

But apparently, she was willing to compromise…

Again, Saul-Sena to Smith…

[roll tape]

[Actuality 9- “… would you consider… client regarding to the commitment.�]

And moments later…

[roll tape]

[Actuality 10- Smith- “…We could commit to looking… opposed, ‘Nay’�]

And that’s how deals get done at City Hall.

For WMNF, I’m Stan Davis.

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