Pinellas County now offers grants for industrial development

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Pinellas County Economic Development's new Employment Sites program. By: Josh Holton (4/5/24)

Pinellas County is mostly built out. But new construction could expand by renewing older sites. The Urban Land Institute held its Florida Summit last weekend to explore what communities are doing to attract new businesses and industries to the area. Developers from around the country shared their best practices for walkable and mixed-use communities at the Florida Summit, while praising Florida efforts to design city centers like Water Street in Tampa. And now Pinellas County seeks to mobilize resources to make that region a hub to employ workers in the industrial sector. Teresa Brydon is the redevelopment manager with Pinellas County Economic Development. She manages the employment sites program

“Which is a $92 million dollar program where we get to help developers and/or business entities grow and expand their footprints throughout Pinellas County.”

The program is funded by Penny for Pinellas, a sales tax increase approved by voters in 2017 intended to help fund local infrastructure, with a third of those dollars collected coming from tourists and seasonal visitors. She said there should be some major projects completed over the next decade to put that $92 million back into capital improvement projects.

“We’ve got five different rounds of funding where we’ve committed somewhere in the neighborhood of about $27 million dollars to over 20 projects throughout the county primarily focused on industrial, industrial flex, Class A office, and then headquarter operations where people are doing expansions.”

Brydon said several old sites built out in the 1970s and 1980s are in need of renewal to make them more enticing for businesses. She said the program will use grants to offset funding gaps in new office or industrial developments. You can learn more about the initiative at pced.org/esp

 

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