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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Sylvia's to get boot? City moves on eviction

[Times (2013)]

16

March

Sylvia's, the Midtown soul food restaurant that opened to great fanfare in late 2013, has been served its eviction papers.

The city filed a complaint for possession and damages late last week. The original eviction date of Dec. 29, 2015 had been pushed back after the city agreed to let Larry Newsome, who runs the non-profit that leased the ground-floor of the Manhattan Casino for the restaurant, come up with a viable financial plan.

Newsome said Tuesday that he did just that and will make an initial payment of $32,000 by Friday. He said he'll pay the $35,000 balance of rent owed, late fees and property taxes by March 25.

City Attorney Jackie Kovilaritch said the city doesn't comment on pending litigation. 

The city poured in about $3 million to renovate the historic building at 642 22nd St. S with the idea that the investment would pay off.

Initially, it did. Long lines of eager diners crowded the restaurant in the first few months, ringing up $122,708 in sales after it opened in November 2013 and $90,462 the following month.

But business has tailed off. The city announced its move toward eviction in the final days of 2015.

The building sits across the street from Commerce Park, a 14-acre parcel that Mayor Rick Kriseman recently announced would house a marine parts business and a motorcycle dealership. That deal also promised 80,000-square-feet of "workforce" housing and retail.

 

[Last modified: Wednesday, March 16, 2016 2:59pm]

    

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