Flour mill to make way for Water Street development

The missing link in Lighting owner Jeff Vinik's vision for Downtown Tampa is now under contract. Vinik's Strategic Property Planners (SPP) is buying the ConAgra flour mill near the site of Water Street Tampa, Vinik's planned $3-billion redevelopment of the city's downtown,  

"This has been six or seven years of negotiations," said Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn. "Thankfully Jeff Vinik again stepped up to the plate and did the right thing."

The mill was built 80 years ago. Tampa may have been the Cigar City, but for decades it’s also supplied the Southeastern U.S. and Caribbean with flour. 

SPP payed $13 million for the mill. The mayor hopes ConAgra and its partners will build a new mill in Port Tampa Bay. 

“We're never done and this is not the end, but this is a major piece. This is a big day for us," said Buckhorn. 

SPP has not released specific plans for the site, but the city plans to extend Cumberland Avenue through the mill site to create a pedestrian-friendly boulevard connecting Channelside with downtown.