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Scaled-back Tampa Bay Marina renovation plans get port approval

The marina near the Howard Frankland Bridge will have about 20 percent fewer docks and slips, according to revised plans.
This 2019 aerial photo, part of a site proposal filed with Port Tampa Bay, shows the Tampa Bay Marina, which has been under development since 2011. Port commissioners on Sept. 21 approved a scaled-back proposal for the property that reduced the number of slips and docks by more than 20 percent.
This 2019 aerial photo, part of a site proposal filed with Port Tampa Bay, shows the Tampa Bay Marina, which has been under development since 2011. Port commissioners on Sept. 21 approved a scaled-back proposal for the property that reduced the number of slips and docks by more than 20 percent. [ Port Tampa Bay ]
Published Sep. 21
Updated Sep. 21

A decade after the owners of a marina near the Howard Frankland Bridge first announced plans for renovation — and more than two years after those plans started coming into focus — Port Tampa Bay has signed off on a revised version of the project.

The Tampa Bay Marina, located just south of the bridge at 205 S Hoover Blvd., in the Westshore area in Tampa, downscaled its plans for all-new docks in part because residents expressed concern about the possible noise, traffic and impact on anglers and kayakers.

Marina developers first filed plans to renovate the 102-slip facility in 2011. But not until 2019 did they file a proposal for 117 boat slips on more than 24,000 square feet of fixed dock structures, as well as a 560-square-foot service dock for fueling and waste disposal.

The plan approved Thursday keeps the service dock, but pulls the rest of the facility back to 89 slips on a little more than 20,000 square feet. Instead of the additional docks, the marina would install a catwalk for temporary mooring for boaters who needed to hop on and off.

Related: A look inside Tampa's new Westshore Marina District

At a Sept. 7 hearing on the project, marina attorney Michael Hargett said the reduction was partially a response to nearby residents’ complaints. The new plan, would provide “an increase(d) safety margin for both boaters and marine life,” Hargett said, according to a meeting transcript.

But it was also a response to the booming personal boating industry. After initially planning to cater to larger boats 45 feet or longer, developers conducted a market survey and determined that it made more sense to service “more modern, smaller and efficient console vessels to better meet the needs of the local Tampa Bay community,” Hargett said.

A Hillsborough County report in reference to a permit application called the marina renovations “warranted” and said they “should serve the boating community well.”

The marina has not yet outlined a timeline for the revised renovations, which include at least 2,525 cubic yards of dredging to get to a depth of at least four feet. Calls and emails to marina officials were not returned Tuesday.