As our city continues to change, we continue to monitor and advocate for St. Petersburg’s historic resources. A growing city can accommodate thoughtful new development while celebrating the city’s historic character.
Touted as “a rare opportunity to acquire a fully occupied retail asset in a truly unbeatable location,” local real estate broker Franklin Street recently announced that the south side of Central Avenue’s 600 Block is up for sale.
You may recall that Preserve the ‘Burg led the effort to save the north side of the 600 Block back in 2010, working with the owners of the Crislip Arcade to avoid demolition of the building and re-energize the historic icon, one of just a few arcade-style commercial buildings in the city. The block became a catalyst for the revitalization of Central Avenue and a signature downtown destination.
While we don’t know what the future will hold, we do know there are no historic protections for Central Avenue, so we’re keeping an eye on this property.
We wrote about the proposed Lake House condo development a few months back. The proposal was pulled from the Development Review Commission Agenda but is scheduled to be heard on Nov. 2. Earlier drawings depicted an 18-story tower, necessitating the demolition of several historic properties in the Mirror Lake neighborhood, three of which are listed as "contributing structures'' within the Downtown National Historic District. We continue to believe that high rise development should be concentrated in the downtown core and should “step down” in historic areas like Mirror Lake, and we remain concerned about the demolition of historic properties in the historic district.
After the DRC’s unanimous denial of revised plans for the Julia Apartments back in August, during which commissioners labeled the project “dysfunctional” and “too much,” the developer’s appeal to City Council failed to achieve the super majority vote needed to override the DRC’s decision. The developer faces a tight deadline (extended due to Hurricane Ian) to file plans with the city to construct an earlier iteration of the project.