X

Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.

Downtown St. Petersburg’s commercial landscape could be in for big changes in years to come, based largely on a multimillion-dollar proposal to turn the city’s longtime spring-training baseball stadium into a permanent big-league venue. The Tampa Bay Rays want to rebuild Al Lang Field into a 34,000-seat, open-air ballpark as the centerpiece of a $1-billion redevelopment program within the central business district.

The estimated $450-million cost of the new stadium, to be topped by a retractable roof, would be funded partly by the sale and redevelopment of Tropicana Field, the Rays’ current indoor home on 86 acres near Interstate 275 in a nearby industrial zone. The new stadium is intended to open in time for the 2012 baseball season. Rays spring-training games will move to Port Charlotte next year.

Besides raising all sorts of speculation about mixed-use developments that would replace Tropicana Field, all the new-stadium talk is raising prospects for existing office buildings within the St. Petersburg CBD, several of which are in the vicinity of Al Lang Field.”It would have a positive effect on all commercial real estate in St. Petersburg,” says Russ Sampson, executive VP of Colliers Arnold in Tampa.

Statistically, St. Petersburg’s office market could use a boost lately, with vacancy having fallen as low as 5% in 2005 but ending last year at 11.9%, according to Colliers Arnold estimates. The newest major office construction in many years is the 16-story Progress Energy Florida headquarters, which added 211,000 sf to the city’s inventory.

However, that single-tenant structure isn’t the cause of the vacancy increase. Lutz Real Estate Investments reclassified its 135,000-sf 100 Bay Central building, originally a retail structure, to class A office status. The 35-story Signature Place condominium tower under construction Downtown is also expected to add 40,000 sf of office condos this year.

“It’s one more exciting Downtown amenity that could be a benefit to office leasing,” notes Ken Heretick, president of Vector Commercial Real Estate Services LLC and chairman of the St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership.

Want to continue reading?
Become a Free ALM Digital Reader.

Once you are an ALM digital member, you’ll receive:

  • Unlimited access to GlobeSt and other free ALM publications
  • Access to 15 years of GlobeSt archives
  • Your choice of GlobeSt digital newsletters and over 70 others from popular sister publications
  • 3 free articles* across the ALM subscription network every 30 days
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM events and publications

*May exclude premium content
Already have an account?

Dig Deeper

GlobeSt

Join GlobeSt

Don't miss crucial news and insights you need to make informed commercial real estate decisions. Join GlobeSt.com now!

  • Free unlimited access to GlobeSt.com's trusted and independent team of experts who provide commercial real estate owners, investors, developers, brokers and finance professionals with comprehensive coverage, analysis and best practices necessary to innovate and build business.
  • Exclusive discounts on ALM and GlobeSt events.
  • Access to other award-winning ALM websites including ThinkAdvisor.com and Law.com.

Already have an account? Sign In Now
Join GlobeSt

Copyright © 2020 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.