-Covault- Senior Technical Analyst- 

Investment by Billionaires Revamping your Business for the Better

The project is named Water Street Tampa. It’s a joint venture between Lightning owner Jeff Vinik and Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates. Over the next 10 years, they will invest more than $3-billion in transforming the area around Amalie Arena and Channelside Drive.

The project will add 32 new buildings throughout roughly a one-mile stretch of downtown. That’s more than 9-million square feet of new space. The buildings will include commercial, residential, educational, entertainment, and retail space.

Among the highlights: the city’s first new office towers in 25 years, the city’s first five-star hotel, and a 500-room hotel across from the Marriott Waterside (operators of those two properties have not been announced).

Water Street Tampa will also add 3,500 new rental and for-sale residences, nearly doubling the housing inventory downtown. Developers estimate when the entire project is complete in 2027, an additional 23,000 people will livein, work at, or visit Water Street Tampa each day.

The project will also add 12.9 acres of new and enhanced public space. The centerpiece is a new street from whence the project derives its name. Water Street will begin where Old Water Street dead-ends at Channelside Drive, and it will run north for three blocks, roughly to Finley Street.

Construction on the street started last summer. Contractors have leveled the land adjacent to Ferg’s Live, which eventually be closed and relocated to make way for the development. Developers hope to complete the street and the first 18 buildings by the end of 2020, just in time for the Super Bowl in February 2021.

The first building to go up will be USF’s new Morsani College of Medicine and Heart Institute. Site preparation is already underway at Channelside and Meridian Avenue. Construction will begin on several more buildings this fall.