Make us your home page

Once BayWalk, then Shops at St. Pete, it's now Sundial


Sundial is the new name for the downtown retail complex formerly known as the Shops at St. Pete that was formerly known as BayWalk. The much-awaited shopping plaza's new title comes from an ornate metal sundial that will sit in a fountain in the middle of its courtyard.

"The sundial came before the name," said Rick Baker, president of the Edwards Group. But as Bill Edwards, the center's owner and visionary, kept talking about how people would meet at the sundial the idea for the name was born. And he thought it was a nod to St. Petersburg's nickname, the Sunshine City.

Baker added that there are already numerous shopping centers known as "The Shops" at somewhere.

Water from the sundial fountain will trickle into a mosaic lagoon made from 288,000 blue, 1-inch glass tiles. Life-size bronze sculptures of dolphins will be perched in the water mosaic. Much of this will be shaded by four 18-foot-tall, 28-foot-wide umbrellas resembling enormous flowers.

The dramatic courtyard, which has been a roped-off construction zone for months, will open to pedestrians by the end of March. Stores and restaurants will open sporadically after that. Baker wouldn't say when the first would open or when all stores would be in place.

"We have signed contracts in place for most of the center," Baker said. "I think people will be very excited about the tenants both local and national."

He declined to name any but said more announcements are coming soon.

Edwards, who bought long-struggling Baywalk for $5.2 million in late 2011, originally planned to start naming tenants in August 2012 and open the center in the fall of 2013. Baker didn't acknowledge any holdups or explain the delayed time frame.

"I'm very comfortable with where we are," he said. "I think it's been done in a very timely manner. It takes a lot to do something like this."

The walkway from the city's parking garage and the pathway between the shops and Muvico have been resurfaced with quarried stone. Several tenants have started the buildout of their interior space as exterior construction hums along. The logo that was designed for the Shops at St. Pete, an ornate letter S, will remain for Sundial. Silver signs featuring the S started going up Monday.

Most restaurants will be on the second level, with 9,000 square feet of outdoor dining space for a quick bite or gourmet meal. Two giant, flat screens atop the second floor will air images of fashion shows or cooking demonstrations going on at the center.

Most of the shops will be on the first floor. Many will face the courtyard, but some will face the movie theater. LED and other lighting will illuminate the umbrellas, fountain, sundial and landscaping at night.

Baker wouldn't share the cost of the 28-foot-high sundial. Edwards has estimated he will spend $40 million on the whole project. The sundial, fountain and mosaic lagoon were designed by Rene Lagler, who has designed settings for various events such as one Academy Awards ceremony and five Grammys. The dolphins are being created by local artist Mark Aeling and MGA Sculpture Studio in St. Petersburg.

"Kids are going to be taking pictures in front of those dolphins their whole lives," Baker said.

Katherine Snow Smith can be contacted at (727) 893-8785 or

Once BayWalk, then Shops at St. Pete, it's now Sundial 02/19/14 [Last modified: Tuesday, February 18, 2014 10:54pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Report slams Pinellas construction licensing agency and leaders

    Local Government

    LARGO — The Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board mismanaged its finances, lacked accountability and disregarded its own rules, according to a scathing report released Wednesday by the county's inspector general.

    Rodney Fischer, the executive director of the Pinellas County Construction Licensing Board, resigned in January.  [SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]
  2. A meatless burger that tastes like meat? Ciccio Restaurants will serve the Impossible Burger.

    Food & Dining

    TAMPA — The most red-hot hamburger in the nation right now contains no meat.

    Ciccio executive chef Luis Flores prepares an Impossible Burger Wednesday at the Epicurean Hotel Food Theatre in Tampa.
  3. Construction starts on USF medical school, the first piece of Tampa's Water Street project


    TAMPA — Dozens of workers in hard hats and boots were busy at work at the corner of South Meridian Avenue and Channelside Drive Wednesday morning, signaling the start of construction on the University of South Florida's new Morsani College of Medicine and Heart Institute.

    Construction is underway for the new Morsani College of Medicine and USF Health Heart Institute in downtown Tampa. This view is from atop Amalie Arena, where local officials gathered Wednesday to celebrate the first piece of what will be the new Water Street District. The USF building is expected to open in late 2019. [ALESSANDRA DA PRA  |   Times]
  4. Tampa Bay among top 25 metro areas with fastest growing economies

    Economic Development

    Tampa Bay had the 24th fastest growing economy among 382 metro areas in the country for 2016. According to an analysis by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, Tampa Bay's gross domestic product, or GDP, increased 4.2 percent from 2015 to 2016 to hit $126.2 billion.

    Tampa Bay had the 24th fastest growing economy in the country for 2016. Rentals were one of the areas that contributed to Tampa Bay's GDP growth. Pictured is attorney David Eaton in front of his rental home. 
  5. Tampa Bay cools down to more moderate home price increases

    Real Estate

    The increase in home prices throughout much of the Tampa Bay area is definitely slowing from the torrid rate a year ago.

    This home close to Bayshore Boulevard in Tampa sold for $3.055 million in August, making it Hillsborough County's top sale of the month. [Courtesy of Bredt Cobitz]