Local Black-owned business awarded $3 million for Ybor housing development

Dontavious Pittman pictured in the black Tshirt between his two business partners from PDG. By: Josh Holton (6/28/23)

Three Tampa Bay Tech alumni are planning to build a new affordable housing development in partnership with the City of Tampa. Their company was selected for a $3 million state grant to help fund a 10-unit project just north of Ybor City.

The development will only be for households earning 50 to 80% or below the Area Median Income. For a family of four to qualify the total household income has to be below $69,500 annually. Dontavious Pittman and two of his friends met in high school, and they started PDG after college. Newly elected City Council member Gwendolyn Henderson said this is a new beginning for a promising Black-owned business in Tampa.

“To see young African American males standing shoulder to shoulder building a company called the Pittman Group and Shakers for the sake of development: that is new.”

Pittman said he will be keeping the development within the character of the community.

“It’ll be similar fabric to what’s in place now in Ybor City. So we’re going to have front porches on this thing, we’re going to use siding. It’s going to be luxury affordable.”

During the press conference, multiple people could be seen sleeping on the sidewalk near the site on 22nd Street and Columbus Drive. But Henderson is hopeful for the future.

“You’ve got to believe in spaces when it comes to development that are not all pristine and pretty. You know so that’s where it starts, and Tampa Heights started that way, and look at us now.”

Pittman said he wants to bring life back to the corner, which has sat dormant for so long.

“If we can get some of the other business owners to start reinvesting in the community, some more housing going up in the area, I think this area will definitely thrive within the next 10 years.”

Pittman says rents will less than $1,300. Tampa is one of the most expensive cities for renters, with most renters paying over $1,200, according a new analysis by Clever Real Estate.

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