Tampa Port Authority votes to kill the latest Channelside Plaza renovation proposal

TAMPA - In the end, it was a unanimous vote by the Tampa Port Authority that killed the latest proposal to renovate the struggling Channelside Plaza.

The shopping center had renewed hopes of being brought back alive by a group of Tampa investors calling themselves "Liberty Channelside LLC."

The two men behind the latest project were at the meeting today, saying sorry for recent outbursts that were made by the men at a recent meeting, and said they hoped to work with the board on the project.

But the idea brought immediate admonishment from several board members, including Sandra Murman, who said the two men had wasted "a hell of a lot of the staff's time," in trying to reach a deal on escrow.

The Port Authority wanted to see an investment of at least $8 million by Liberty Channelside, but the group, Murman said, was only willing to front $2 million.

Murman asked the board to consider denying an offer by the owner of Channelside's loan to assign it to Liberty.

In a unanimous vote, the board agreed, thus killing the proposal.

Both men had already left the meeting at least an hour before the vote took place.

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