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Business News

Residential project under review in downtown Tampa

Published:   |   Updated: February 28, 2014 at 06:49 PM

Add another project to the list of condos and apartment buildings that developers plan for downtown Tampa.

The project is not yet announced, but city planners are working out details with The Richman Group on potentially a seven-story complex with up to 338 units in a sleepy area just north of the Forum and the Channel District.

According to city records, the block-sized site in question is bordered by Morgan Street on the west, Whiting Street on the north, Jefferson Street on the east and the Crosstown Expressway on the south. The property has not yet changed hands, and is still owned by an entity called JMC-Booker LLC, appraised by Hillsborough County at just over $5 million.

Officials with the Greenwich Conn.-based Richman Group declined to comment on their plans, other than to send an email that read “We'd be happy to talk with you after we close on the land in May/June 2014.”

Until then, development specialists with the company are trading emails with city planners about site plans and architectural renderings – with details as specific as whether Verizon or Bright House have rights of way on the property, and just where water lines might run if they go forward.

As of August last year, one official with the Richman Group told city planners that “we are in the due diligence stage of building a multi-family structure in the [central business district] of Tampa,” and they asked questions about rules regarding open spaces in the area. By October, they started trading potential site plans and by December they started trading preliminary drawings of a structure that very much resembles others in the Channel District. The correspondence does not say whether the plan entails condos or apartments.

One potential layout calls for about 50 units on each of seven floors, with a mix of studios, one-bedroom and two-bedroom units, with cantilevered balconies on many units.

Tampa is far from a strange land for the Richman Group. The real estate development company manages scores of apartment complexes in the region, including at least 10 in the Tampa area.

If successful, the new project would only add to several new sites in the area, including the Skyhouse tower that's now under construction in the Channel District, and the planned Martin tower as well.

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