Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Cypress Creek Town Center hits another snag

WESLEY CHAPEL — A contractor has sued Cypress Creek Town Center over unpaid fees as the mall site sits dormant with environmental problems.

Tampa-based Kearney Construction Co. LLC filed a lawsuit against the Richard E. Jacobs Group Inc. and companies it operates, as well as three companies controlled by John Sierra, who sold the 100-acre retail site.

Kearney accuses the Richard E. Jacobs Group Inc. of wrongfully terminating its contracts and refusing to pay $1.6-million for work it did after changes were put in place to protect Cypress Creek from muddy stormwater runoff.

The 65-page lawsuit, filed in circuit court, also said the developer repeatedly changed the directions given to Kearney regarding best management practices and failed to keep the company informed.

Kearney is also seeking damages, attorney fees and a release of liability from its two contracts.

Lawyers from Kearney and Cypress Creek Town Center declined to comment. However, Cypress Creek spokeswoman Deanne Roberts said it will not affect the mall's construction plans.

"It has no bearing … on the developer's intent or commitment to resume construction on this project as soon as the permitting authorities allow," she said.

The lawsuit is the latest in a series of challenges facing the proposed mall, one of the largest retail projects in the Tampa Bay area. In April, it was indefinitely placed on hold, putting at risk more than $150-million in financial commitments and thousands of promised jobs.

Beset by problems with an environmental permit, the Jacobs Group, developer of the 1-million-square-foot project, and its prospective tenants agreed to halt construction at the site at Interstate 75 and State Road 56.

The stoppage came in waves, beginning in mid February when work ceased on an area earmarked for a Target store.

The mall, projected to generate 4,000 jobs and more than $9-million in yearly tax revenue, was scheduled to open in October, in time for the holiday season. The Web site now says it will open in October 2009.

Meanwhile, rivals are already in full swing or are getting ready to open. The Grove at Wesley Chapel began opening some stores last fall and recently celebrated the grand opening of the Cobb 16 Theatres and Cinebistro. It is located at Oakley Boulevard and Interstate 75.

The Shops at Wiregrass, at State Road 56 and Bruce B. Downs Boulevard, is preparing for its big grand opening Oct. 30, with two of the three anchors, Macy's and Dillard's, planning for Oct. 25 openings. JCPenney, also an anchor, opened in 2005.

Lisa Buie can be reached at or (813) 909-4604.

Cypress Creek Town Center hits another snag 10/17/08 [Last modified: Monday, October 20, 2008 5:43pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Why are so few Tampa Bay houses for sale? They're being rented

    Real Estate

    Oreste Mesa Jr. owns a modest 40-year-old house in West Tampa just off MacDill Avenue. It's an area where many homeowners are hearing the siren song of builders and cashing out while the market is strong.

    Attorney David Eaton poses in front of his rental home at 899 72nd Ave. North. in St. Petersburg. He's among a growing number of property owners who see more value in renting out unused homes than selling them. 
[SCOTT KEELER   |   Times]

  2. In a word, Hernando school leaders say, first day was 'smooth'


    Over and over on Monday, school district leaders used the same word to describe the unfolding of the first day of school in Hernando County.


    Third-graders Teagan Ferguson, left, and Brianna DeLaine deliver attendance figures to the office at J.D. Floyd Elementary School on Monday. Superintendent Lori Romano and other district administrators toured a handful of schools and classrooms throughout the day,
  3. Looking Back: Diana, America's Favorite Princess


    The Washington Post, in her obituary, called her "the most photographed woman in the world." She was loved in England for saying, after her divorce from Prince Charles, "I'd like to be a queen of people's hearts." Americans loved her for her work with charitable causes supporting victims of AIDS and landmines. Aug. 31 …

    Prince Charles and Princess Diana on the balcony of Buckingham Palace on their wedding day.

(AP Photo)
  4. Rays morning after: 5 mistakes that led to loss to Blue Jays


    We've already documented elsewhere what the Rays didn't do, how they failed to take advantage of a prime opportunity to win Wednesday's game, getting just one run after loading the bases in the seventh with one out and three of …

    Jake Faria make too many mistakes, the failure to execute costing him repeatedly.
  5. Unborn baby dies, two critically injured in Largo crash


    LARGO — Two people were critically injured and an unborn baby was killed in a crash that shut down an intersection on Ulmerton Road late Wednesday night, the Florida Highway Patrol said.