At ABC Action News, we know it's the combination of all the communities that make Tampa Bay great to live in. That's why we've started a new series of reporting highlighting good things happening around town, discovering cool gems you may not know about, and uncovering the big news events impacting those areas.
On Friday, the Good Morning Tampa Bay team focused on Apollo Beach.
The Apollo Beach Blvd. (Paseo Al Mar)/I-75 Roadway Construction Project will extend the existing four-lane divided highway, creating an overpass on I-75 to connect U.S. 41 to U.S. 301.
The connection is expected to reduce traffic congestion on Big Bend Road by providing an additional route option for residents and commuters in the South Shore area, according to Hillsborough County.
They are raising babies at the Florida Aquarium's Center for Conservation in Apollo Beach.
"We really are a nursery for coral," says Keri O'Neil, senior scientist of the coral conservation program at the facility. "We're simply raising them up and giving them a headstart before releasing them into the ocean."
The Apollo Beach Nature Preserve is one of the few beaches in Tampa Bay where dogs are welcome.
"As long as your pet is on a six-foot leash, come and enjoy this beautiful beach with your dog and your family and your kids, just a great spot," explains Chris Kiddy with Hillsborough County Conservation and Environmental Lands Management.
Tampa Electric's Manatee Viewing Center will remain closed until the fall of 2021 due to COVID-19.
It is scheduled to reopen next season on Nov. 1, 2021.
Hillsborough County environmental leaders continue to monitor water quality in the Apollo Beach area after the Piney Point leak in Manatee County.
Wildlife in Tampa Bay, especially near the TECO Manatee Viewing Center, is critical.
State and local lawmakers are taking steps to make your morning commute from Riverview faster.
Starting this summer, the Florida Department of Transportation and Hillsborough County are planning to upgrade the I-75 and Big Bend Road interchange. It will span from Covington Garden Drive to Simmons Loop.
The county is hosting a virtual public engagement opportunity for the project through June 7. Click here for more information.
There are schools of fish, and then there’s going to school to learn about fish. For one Apollo Beach charter captain, he’s going to make sure every trip out on the boat is a learning experience.
When you go fishing with Captain Mike Murphy, you aren’t just going to hook a snook, you’re also going to reel in an education.
“I want them to understand why they are catching the fish and why Tampa Bay is such an incredible resource,” said Murphy, captain of Fish This Inshore Charters.
Neighbors helping neighbors. That's exactly how the Cypress Creek Co-op started here in Apollo Beach.
A group of neighbors started a Facebook page to help create the co-op so they could all get more affordable fruits and vegetables.
"So each week, we put together what's considered a bin or a box and we do it at a flat rate. So typically, a week is a medium for $20 and a large for $30. And we pack it cool with as many local produce items as possible. Of course, we kind of source out for things that aren't in season. But it can be anywhere from 10 to 12, fruits and veggies that we put together for 20 bucks. So it's a very cost-efficient way for families to feed with a great budget line," explains Cassandra Adams.
If you've ever traveled near Apollo Beach, you've definitely noticed the smokestacks, some may even say they're an iconic part of Tampa Bay.
The sheep are a much greener alternative to gas-guzzling lawnmowers. They love to eat the grass growing under the solar energy panels TECO has on several sites.
The hundred-some Katahdin sheep are all female on the 100-acre Big Bend Solar site.
The Tampa Bay area is one of the fastest-growing metropolitan regions in the country with an average of 1,000 new residents a week moving into town.
The I-Team has uncovered that the building boom is affecting wetlands and causing flooding in new neighborhoods.
Four Stacks Brewing Company is keeping their Apollo Beach location up and running. However, the Riverview location was forced to close up shop when the state shutdown bars and breweries, despite a successful first year operating that location.
“We had to make a decision to buckle down and minimize expenses here, permanently shut down and focus on Apollo Beach,” said Nathan Hangen, founder of Four Stacks Brewing Company.
The Apollo Beach location is still open and going strong. Click here for the latest updates and drink deals.