Council hires firm to help fill city manager position
Colin Baenziger & Associates, a Daytona Beach Shores consulting firm, was chosen by the City Council to do an executive search to replace outgoing City Manager Frank Edmunds.
Edmunds, the only manager the city has had, has announced he will retire after about 20 years on the job. Baenziger will receive $23,250. The company will conduct a needs assessment, advertise for applicants, screen and select finalists, refer top selections to the council, negotiate and continue to provide assistance until someone is on the job.
Community complex opens inside City Park
The city opened its Community Center Complex this week. In Seminole City Park, 7464 Ridge Road, the 14,932-square-foot center houses the Seminole Historical Society, a community policing office staffed by the Pinellas Sheriff's Office and storage for public works and recreation.
Designed by Mason Blau and Associates architects, and built by Biltmore construction, the project has been two years in the making and was designed as a green building with solar panels on the roof, reflective roofing materials and other eco-friendly features. The community center is open for rentals.
Heritage House closes Sunday, big sale set
After 42 years in Tampa Bay, family-owned Heritage House Home Interiors at 8901 U.S. 19 is set to close Sunday. The store operated as Burgess Carriage House and sold Ethan Allen furniture before becoming Heritage House in 2007. At that point the business, owned by the Burgess family of St. Petersburg, opted to sell the more upscale Drexel Heritage brand.
Furniture, upholstery and accessories are 90 percent off during the final three days.
Cage Brewing to set up in Grand Central area
Another craft brewery is coming to town. Cage Brewing will open in June or July at 2001 First Ave. S.
Bob Hughes, owner of the R Bar on Treasure Island, has the property under contract. It consists of four lots and a 4,500-square-foot building that now belong to Ferg's Sports Bar owner Mark Ferguson. He bought it for $375,000 a year ago to open an outlet for selling architectural salvage and reclaimed items.
Hughes has been scouting downtown for a location for about a year as well. He almost went into the space at 670 Central Ave. that recently collapsed after a water line burst.
The First Avenue space will have a brewery and tasting room along with a game room for free pool, pingpong and pinball. Outside patios will have tables as well.
Hughes expects to employ about 10 people. He will keep the 20-year-old R Bar, which he bought four years ago.
Federal grant will go for transient docks
A $632,000 federal grant will help increase transient docks downtown.
The city will add $300,000 to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service grant to undertake the almost million-dollar project that could get under way in about a year, said Chris Ballestra, the city's managing director of development coordination.
"We will wait to see what the ultimate pier will be and that will have an influence on the start time," he said.
Ballestra said the docks, about two dozen or less for regular boats and with berths for larger vessels, will be south of the Pier's Pelican parking lot. Completion of both the pier selection process and Downtown Waterfront Master Plan will influence the ultimate layout of the slips, he said.
Transient docks were among the amenities residents said they wanted as part of a new or renovated pier.
Staff writers Katherine Snow Smith, Waveney Ann Moore and Anne Lindberg contributed to this report.