Making Waves in Westshore  - Guide to Greater Tampa Bay
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Making Waves in Westshore 

Making Waves in Westshore 

The Westshore District is the largest employment area on the west coast of Florida, and it continues to revolutionize and develop. A wide variety of businesses thrive here, from Fortune 500 companies to tech incubators and startups. With its dynamic vision, the Westshore District is expanding its residential and entertainment offerings. 

The Westshore District is approximately 10 square miles on the western edge of Tampa, bordering Tampa Bay. This area has evolved from a hub for white-collar business to a place professionals and families can call home. 

Westshore District by the Numbers 

  • More than $1 billion in private investments into more than 25 current or planned projects 
  • 100,000+ employees at more than 4,000 businesses 
  • 13.2 million square feet of commercial office space 
  • 350 retail stores, including within shopping destinations WestShore Plaza and International Plaza and Bay Street and Midtown Tampa 
  • 250+ restaurants 
  • 45+ hotels with 8,300 rooms and more than 265,000 square feet of meeting and event space 
  • Award-winning Tampa International Airport 
  • 3 major highways 
  • 5 higher education institutions with approximately 26,000 students: 
  • Hillsborough Community College’s Dale Mabry Campus 
  • Troy University 
  • Ultimate Medical Academy 
  • Embry-Riddle Worldwide 
  • Everglades University 

Largest Employers  

  • Fortune 500 company Bloomin’ Brands 
  • PwC 
  • New York Life 
  • Amgen 
  • Bristol Myers Squibb 
  • AECOM 
  • Florida Blue 
  • IBM 
  • HCI 
  • Progressive 
  • LabCorp 
  • State Farm 
  • CAE USA 
  • WSP 

A Conveniently Beautiful Place to Be 

Westshore’s central location provides easy access to downtown Tampa and the entire Greater Tampa Bay area. The Courtney Campbell Causeway and Howard Frankland Bridge connect Westshore with Clearwater and St. Petersburg. The Westshore Alliance helps make mobility more efficient with districtwide transportation improvements. 

The Transportation Action Plan advanced in 2022 and includes projects like the Gray Street Bicycle Boulevard and improvements to Boy Scout Boulevard at Manhattan Avenue, adding more than 30 miles of bike lanes and coastal trails. Improvements on West Shore Boulevard work toward the goal of a “grand boulevard,” including narrowed lanes and mid-block crossings.  

The result is a highly accessible, easily walkable district, where residents and visitors can navigate to everywhere they live, work, learn and play. Speaking of play, there are countless ways to enjoy the natural beauty within Westshore, such as with more than 300 acres of parks, beaches and trails and attractions like the 111-year-old Rocky Point Golf Course.  

Key Developments 

The Emerson on Rocky Point 

The Emerson on Rocky Point is the fourth joint venture project between Northwood Ravin and Framework Group, a Tampa-based development and construction company focused on delivering market-leading housing in one-of-a-kind locations. 

“We’re thrilled to be partnering with Northwood Ravin again on another exciting project in Florida,” said Phillip Smith, president of Framework Group. “Rocky Point is one of the last remaining waterfront apartment opportunities in the market, and this building’s design and amenities will establish a new standard in upscale apartment living.” 

The Emerson is under construction and open for pre-leasing. Residents can choose luxury one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments and townhomes. 

  • 35,000-square-foot open-air pool deck overlooking the bay with resort-style pool and cabanas, gaming lawn, grilling stations and fire pits  
  • Fitness and cardio center 
  • Onsite concierge 
  •  2-story resident clubhouse 
  • Men’s and women’s sauna 
  • Flex business center workspace and conference room 
  • 3,300-square-foot private rooftop resident lounge, bar and outdoor entertaining space 
  • 12-slip boat dock, kayak launch and an additional 3,500-square-foot plaza at the water’s edge 
NOVEL Beach Park 

NOVEL Beach Park by Crescent Communities faces Old Tampa Bay and is under construction. The community will embrace the best beach club living while just a short drive from shopping and dining.  

  • 289 units with floor-to-ceiling windows 
  • Ground-level resort-style pool and lounge 
  • Top-of-the-line fitness center 
  • Sky bar atop the ninth floor 
NOVEL Independence Park 

NOVEL Independence Park is the second NOVEL residential experience by Crescent Communities, located off Independence Drive. This 277-unit community features Class A interior home finishes. 

The community will feature three five-story buildings and be a part of Independence Park.  

This 44-acre, mixed-use site has been rezoned to accommodate the project and future phases, including office, retail and townhomes. 

  • Detached garages 
  • Dog park 
  • Fitness center 
  • Pedestrian nature trails 
  • Resort-style swimming pool and rooftop lounge 

Next Generation of Travel Services 

Connectivity is an extremely significant asset to Westshore, with the Tampa International Airport located in the district’s heart. TPA is the gateway for tourists and business professionals who fly into the easy-to-navigate, highly-ranked airport and arrive at any of the region’s thousands of businesses and dozens of restaurants and hotels within minutes.  

Business travelers benefit from the unique work-play environment at the new SkyCenter One. This award-winning office building is connected to Tampa International Airport by a pedestrian bridge and atrium. Hillsborough County Aviation Authority, which runs TPA, will occupy three floors in SkyCenter One. 

SkyCenter One 
  • More than 274,000 square feet of Class-A office space on nine floors 
  • Conference center 
  • Fitness center with locker rooms and showers 
  • Multiple Wi-Fi common areas 
  • Café 

The newest endeavor expanding the private sector at TPA is Sheltair Aviation Services. This $25 million project comprises four hangars, adding more than 77,000 square feet of aircraft storage space for business jets and 32,000 square feet of tenant office space. The project will also add a gated parking lot with special security for events at Raymond James Stadium, including two-time Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers

Another state-of-the-art U.S. headquarters facility to be located at TPA is CAE USA, one of the leading training and simulation companies in the defense market. The new facility, which will be leased from Space Florida, will be home to more than 600 Tampa-based CAE USA employees following completion in 2022

Signature Flight Support is also based at TPA, boasting the world’s largest network of Fixed Base Operators with more than 100 locations. Signature Flight Support’s Tampa International Airport location is equipped to handle general aviation aircraft up to a Boeing 747. 

Powerhouse Entertainment 

It is not all business in Westshore, since sports and entertainment are just minutes away at the George M. Steinbrenner Field and Raymond James Stadium. These two venues will host some megastars in entertainment. 

The Ray Jay hosts George Strait, Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran and Luke Combs during the 2023 concert season. In addition to the Bucs, it is home to the University of South Florida Bulls

GMS is home to the New York Yankees Spring Training and the Tampa Tarpons, who will play 70 home games from April through September. The Savannah Bananas will bring their unique and fun version of baseball to Steinbrenner Field for the first time this spring. The Savannah Bananas compete against the Party Animals in this family-friendly baseball game, called the Banana Ball.  

Year-round, mix business with pleasure at fine dining destinations Ocean Prime, Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Fleming’s, Charley’s, Eddie V’s Prime Seafood, Cooper’s Hawk, Del Frisco’s or any other 250-plus restaurants in Westshore. 

The Culinary Scene 

Westshore City Center is showcasing its debut Jeff Gigante restaurant called Union New American, located on West Shore Boulevard. Gigante and his new partners, Joseph Guggino and Andrew Wright, are opening the restaurant for Next Level Brands.  

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This visionary restauranteur has created some of the most tantalizing and critically acclaimed restaurants in the region, such as the massive French Bistro, Boulon Brasserie in Water Street and the high-energy Forbici Modern Italian in Hyde Park. 

“I absolutely love the Westshore area with all that it offers. The Union New American in the Westshore City Center will encompass everything a restaurant can offer, allowing our clientele to stay and enjoy dining and entertainment in one spot for the entire night, from lunch, brunch, dinner and late night in one location. We will have an indoor and outdoor lounge experience upstairs to listen to live music. It can also be a private event space. It’s spectacular, so I’m super excited to be able to offer that to Tampa.”  

— Jeff Gigante, restauranteur opening Union New American in Westshore City Center 

Hall of Fame Chef Chris Ponte’s success in GTB’s restaurant scene, with Olivia in South Tampa and On Swann in Hyde Park Village, proves this is a culinary destination to experience.  

Ponte’s third restaurant, Ponte Modern American, recently opened in Westshore’s Midtown Tampa development as his flagship restaurant. Ponte envisions that Ponte Modern American will take Tampa to the next level with high-end steak and seafood, quality of service and an unbeatable atmosphere. 

Midtown Tampa 

The notable Midtown Tampa community is a live, work, play concept with available office space that opened in 2021 on the edge of the Westshore District. New in 2022 were many upscale lodging and business options and new culinary ventures. 

Midtown East is an important addition expected to break ground in 2023. It is an office building with 16 floors and 400,000 square feet of Class A office space. Tampa Electric and Peoples Gas plans to move headquarters to Midtown East in 2025. Known as TECO, the company will own 11 floors of Midtown East and become Midtown Tampa’s largest employer, with more than 900 employees in this facility.  

Midtown at a Glance 
  • Convenient location off Interstate 275 and Dale Mabry Highway 
  • Less than 10 minutes to Tampa International Airport and downtown Tampa  
  • Total of 750,000 square feet of office space, including: 
  • Eight-story Midtown West  
  • Three-story The Loft  
  • 390 residential units 
  • Central plaza 
  • Dining and retail 
  • Two hotels 
  • Whole Foods grocery store 
  • REI Co-Op store 
  • Fitness centers 
  • Lakeside park 

Get to Know Westshore 

The Westshore Alliance is a nonprofit organization celebrating its 40th anniversary in 2023. Its mission is to continue the Westshore District’s transformation into a premier mixed-used district and cultivate a thriving community for residents and businesses. The Alliance serves as the voice of Westshore and provides a platform to help the public and business community stay informed, make connections and make their voices heard. For more information, visit 

“Our workplace’s connection to the Westshore community is stronger because of our affiliation with Westshore Alliance. The organization is effective at channeling a shared vision into collective action. The impact of their ongoing projects and programs is both visible and essential.” 

— Lauren Coup, Highwoods Properties 

“Westshore Alliance’s work is vital to the City of Tampa’s long-term economic competitiveness. As employers, residents and visitors continue to look for an authentic urban experience, we are working to create a community that makes Westshore a location of choice.”  

— Ashley Watters, The Bank of Tampa 

By Deborah Holmén.

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