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Miami developer plans implosion to clear way for multifamily project in downtown St. Petersburg

The 98-year-old Tropicana building in downtown St. Petersburg could be imploded this year to make room for a new residential and hotel complex.

Miami-based Tropicana Redevelopment plans to tear down the four-story, nearly 41,000-square-foot building at 25 Second St. N, across from Jannus Live.

The site had already been approved years ago for a multifamily project, and multifamily projects currently make up the hottest sector of commercial real estate throughout the Sunshine State.

"We feel the timing is right," vice president Jerome Hollo said. "We love the city and what has been done to the downtown area."

Tropicana Redevelopment, part of Florida East Coast Realty, bought the building in 2001 for $4 million. The 60-year-old real estate firm specializes in urban high-rise buildings.

Hollo doesn't know the cost of the new project as plans are still being tweaked. He described the development as "very large." The building is the only property the firm owns in the Tampa Bay area.

Tenants in the building were told in March to leave by the end of May so the building could be prepared for demolition. The remaining tenants are in the process of moving out, Hollo said.

The firm has not yet sought demolition permits.

Mark Puente can be reached at mpuente@tampabay.com or (727) 893-8459. Follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/markpuente.

Miami developer plans implosion to clear way for multifamily project in downtown St. Petersburg 05/25/12 [Last modified: Friday, May 25, 2012 11:13pm]
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