Developers make first pitches to residents of St. Pete for Tropicana Field site changes

Residents are weighing in on four proposed plans for redeveloping the Tropicana Field site. Wednesday night, the city of St. Petersburg hosted its first in-person public forum where the public got to question each of the developers.

Some of the residents said they want a plan centered around inclusiveness and one that'll bring different groups in the community together.

"The big thing is to get it done right and to get it done right for generations to come," resident Richard Pierce said.

More than 200 people came together at the Colosseum in St. Petersburg to listen, hear ideas, and offer their thoughts to each developer.

Four proposed plans for redevelopment of the Tropicana Field site

"We want to get an understanding. We want to get feedback and ensure that, number one, our plan is as perfect as possible and then we'll take whatever feedback we can get tonight and implement it in our plan going forward," DuCon Construction CEO Ernie DuBose said.

DuBose is part of the Sugar Hill Community Partners redevelopment team. Part of their plan includes a 1.1-million-square-foot convention center, a 500-room hotel and affordable housing as well as an option for a ballpark and an option without one.

"I want to see what all the offerings are and what is going to be good for the city," resident Donna Torche said.

The forum featured 15-minute presentations from all four developers and a one-hour slot for questions.

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Developer Chuck Whittall's plan for the site includes a hotel, soccer fields and a park with a roller-skating rink.

"The design we have with the big park in the middle of it, the 37-acre park, is completely designed to bring communities together," said Whittall, president of Unicorp National Developments.

Under the Midtown Development proposal, there are plans for mixed-use trails along with retail and dining.

Portman and Third Lake firms have a vision for an outdoor plaza with a market. All different ideas with the same goal of bring the community together.

"This is a chance to bring people in from the margins that we have been pushing out," Pierce said.

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The city of St. Pete plans to host an additional public forum on Thursday from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at the Coliseum, located at 535 4th Avenue North in St. Pete. If you plan to attend in-person you're encouraged to pre-register at stpete.org/trop.

Starting April 12, residents may visit one of the immersive showrooms located throughout the city. The showrooms are equipped with executive summaries of the proposals, renderings, and the ability to leave your input.

Showroom locations:

  • North Library: 861 70th Ave. N.
  • Mirror Lake Library: 280 5th St. N.
  • JW Cate Rec Center: 5801 22nd Ave. N.
  • Enoch Davis Rec Center: 1111 18th Ave. S.

Residents may also submit a comment online to the Economic Development team. You can do this by visiting https://form.jotform.com/210254356325045/.

Community feedback will be collected until the final ribbon is cut on the Tropicana Field redevelopment.

St. Pete narrows list of Tropicana Field developers

The city of St. Petersburg says they’ve narrowed it down to four design proposals for the future of the 86 acres that Tropicana Field sits on.