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Business Observer Wednesday, Jul. 20, 2022 2 weeks ago

Flour mill in Tampa to be razed, making way for development

A downtown group says demolition of the former mill now owned by Water Street Tampa developers will help connect local neighborhoods.
by: Louis Llovio Commercial Real Estate Editor

Demolition of the former Ardent Mills flour mill in downtown Tampa is expected to begin July 22.

The work on the mill, which sits on South Nebraska Avenue, will begin with the bringing down of a two-story building next to the silos on the property. The initial day’s work will be part of a ceremony and press conference put on by the Tampa Downtown Partnership to highlight that removing the mill will reconnect several neighborhoods that were separated when the facility was first built in 1938.

The complete demolition is set to take a few months as contractors take the facility apart piece by piece, the partnership says in a statement. Some of the flour mill’s larger silos will be preserved and repurposed.

The partnership, in its statement, says getting rid of the 82-year-old mill will connect the Channel District and other downtown neighborhoods as well as help complete a 50-year “evolution from warehouses and industrial yards into live/work/play neighborhoods.”

“If you stood in this spot 50 years ago, you’d be surrounded by warehouses, a lumber yard and an asphalt factory,” says Lynda Remund, the partnership's president and CEO. “Today, we have amazing cultural attractions, a startup hub/technology incubator, world-class hotels and one of America’s top 50 medical schools for research.”

The mill is owned by Strategy Property Partners. SPP, alongside Cascade Investment, is behind the $3.5 billion Water Street Tampa development. Hillsborough County records show that an LLC sharing an address with SPP paid $13.4 million for it in 2018.

As for Colorado-based Ardent, it opened a new 150,000-square-foot facility in Gibsonton in March at Port Redwing, which is part of the Port of Tampa.

The new mill can produce up to 1.75 million pounds of flour each day, and the 10-acre property includes a mill, grain storage elevator and cleaning house as well as office packaging, warehouse and storage space.

The ceremonial start of the demolition is set to begin at 10 a.m. Friday on the site of the mill.

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