Mini apartments could come to downtown Tampa

- Mini apartments are a popular housing option in cities like New York, San Francisco and Seattle, but soon Tampa could join the list, offering downtown apartments at an affordable rate.

Developers with Urban Core Holdings LLC have proposed a plan to build mini apartments in a 12-story building at the intersection of Franklin Street and Madison Street in downtown Tampa. The top eight floors of the office building, which houses a CVS on the ground floor, would be transformed into 300- to 400-square-foot units.

Renderings of the apartments in “220 Madison” show rectangular-shaped units with 9-foot ceilings, large windows, granite counter tops, a stackable washer and dryer, and all kitchen appliances included.

“It seems like only luxury apartments are being built, and we knew that there was a need to really address the market for a lot of folks that are looking for a smaller space in the urban core that’s affordable,” said Omar Garcia, manager of Urban Core Holdings LLC.

Unlike many of the pricey luxury apartments throughout the downtown and Channelside area, the mini apartments would rent for about $850 per month, nearly half the price of nearby one-bedroom units.
Garcia said the apartments will be designed to maximize space, including a transitional bed, which will double as a dining room table.

“One of the key features of it will be a Murphy bed, so instead of paying for a space that’s covered by a bed every day, you actually put that away and it creates a whole dining room area,” said Garcia.

Garcia said the apartments are not designed for families, but rather, single millennials who work in the downtown area with a short walk or bike ride for their commute. The apartments will not include parking.

“In just surveying a lot of people that live in the area and work in the area, there are a lot of folks that already don’t have vehicles that work downtown every day. What they’re doing is utilizing a lot of the transportation solutions that are currently available to them. They use the Downtowner. They use the Intowner.  They use Zipcars. They use Uber,” explained Garcia.

The apartment building will have bike racks on the street level and each unit is designed with a bike storage space.

The third floor of the building will also include a community area with a gym, café, lounge space and a balcony, where residents will have room to socialize.

The construction of 220 Madison is expected to take up to a year to complete, but for a $50 fee, reservations are now being accepted online.

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