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TARPON SPRINGS, FL-DeBartolo Development LLC and Forge Capital Partners have started construction on Menes Town Center, a 100,000-square-foot, grocery-anchored complex. It is the first mixed-use development for this Gulf Coast city, known widely for its Greek heritage and an abundance of sponges.

Located at Alternate US 19 and Menes Boulevard, just south of Tarpon Springs’ central business district, the project will combine retail with medical office and residential components. A 37,570-square-foot Sweetbay Supermarket will anchor the center and is scheduled to open in November.

Tampa-based DeBartolo Development and Atlanta-based Forge Capital will build Menes Town Center through Community Reinvestment Partners II LP, which was launched last year to develop and acquire retail real estate throughout the Southeast. CRP II has raised at least $85 million in equity from investors such as TIAA-CREF and various banks, and is now actively pursuing 10 projects.

The Tarpon Springs project is expected to create numerous local jobs throughout its two-year construction phase, as well as in the long term once the retail and medical office space is completed. Tampa-based AG Development is also working with CRP II on Menes Town Center.

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