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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Dunedin aims to create St. Petersburg-inspired arts district



DUNEDIN| If city leaders get their way, Dunedin - home of Honeymoon Island, craft beer, Blue Jays baseball and many things Scottish - could soon add another identity: arts capital of Florida.

After years of talk, the city has moved on road improvements, and approved the creation of grants, permit fee reductions and other incentives aimed at turning a 45-acre swath just north of downtown into a place where artists would buy deteriorating properties, renovating them into homes that double as work studios. The artists would occasionally be allowed to post sidewalk signs and sell their wares during special events, such as the 2nd Friday Art Walk, or other designated times.

The goal, officials say, is to create a niche that draws tourists and potential residents who are already enamored with offerings at the Dunedin Fine Art Center, nearby galleries and the popular arts community in South Pinellas.

"We've seen this happen in St. Petersburg, where some very difficult streets taken over by artists really changed the flavor of the whole neighborhood," said Dunedin planning and development director Greg Rice. "We were hoping for some of the same kind of revitalization."

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[Last modified: Wednesday, July 23, 2014 2:50pm]


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