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CapTrust demolition to clear site for Tampa’s Riverwalk Place tower

The site was once the proposed location for Trump Tower Tampa before that project collapsed.
The CapTrust building located on the Riverwalk in downtown Tampa is slated for demolition starting this week. [OCTAVIO JONES  |  Times]
The CapTrust building located on the Riverwalk in downtown Tampa is slated for demolition starting this week. [OCTAVIO JONES | Times]
Published Sep. 24, 2019
Updated Sep. 25, 2019

TAMPA — A wrecking ball is scheduled to start bringing down the old CapTrust building near the Hillsborough River Wednesday, clearing the way for the planned 50-plus floors of the Riverwalk Place condominium tower.

Demolition of the existing six-story building is expected to begin around 7 a.m. No explosives will be used, but the Riverwalk will be closed while work is under way. Traffic detours around the site at W Whiting Street and Ashley Drive may be in place for several weeks:

• Southbound traffic on Ashley Drive will be routed east onto Whiting Street and then to Tampa Street to go south.

• Northbound Ashley Drive traffic will be routed one block east to Franklin Street to go north.

• Pedestrians on the Riverwalk will be rerouted during weekdays. The Riverwalk may be opened nights and weekends as safety allows.

A developer’s representative said he had no update Tuesday on when construction of the tower might begin. In July, developers stopped taking reservations for the condos. They said the halt was temporary while they revised floor plans for the project, which had been changed from a mix of office and residential space to all residential with restaurants on the ground floor. Once the new floor plans were ready, they said, prospective buyers could reserve units with the updated design.

Riverwalk Place is being developed by Feldman Equities of Tampa in partnership with Two Roads Development, based in South Florida. Late last year, developer Larry Feldman said buyers already had put down deposits of $25,000 to reserve nearly $70 million worth of units in the tower. Model rooms were designed by Thom Filicia of TV’s Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, who also designed the tower’s lobby and other common areas.

“That’s a beautiful, beautiful project,” said Mayor Jane Castor, who said she hoped construction on Riverwalk Place would begin soon. “I do not have a current timeline on that particular project.”

The project site, which Feldman bought for $12.05 million in 2015, once was touted by a different local development group as the future home of Trump Tower Tampa.

In the 2000s, Donald Trump, then years away from his history-making run for the White House, licensed his name for use by the project in exchange for a $2 million fee and a percentage of condo sales.

But the 52-story tower, which Trump said would be “so spectacular that it will redefine both Tampa’s skyline and the market’s expectations of luxury,” never got built after construction costs rose, financing dried up and the real estate market collapsed. Dozens of would-be residents had put down deposits, with some losing more than $250,000.

RELATED STORY: Buyers still feel burned by Donald Trump after Tampa condo tower failure

Contact Richard Danielson at rdanielson@tampabay.com or (813) 226-3403. Follow @Danielson_Times

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