YBOR, Fla. — It's the vision of long-time veterinarian and developer, Darryl Shaw.
The Gas Worx vision hopes to bring a more vibrant live, work, play type of atmosphere to Ybor City.
The development's goal is to create a 40-acre property that connects the historic Ybor to Water Street.
"Ybor in particular has just fascinating history and the idea of building on that and connecting them to surrounding neighborhoods was really, really key to our passion for this project," said Graham Tyrell, Senior V.P. of Development for Kettler.
The opportunities in the space are endless.
"It's going to include a lot of residences of all types, it's going to include a lot of new retail spaces, some retail is going to be some really interesting space, like we have in a warehouse building, we want to convert into sort of a really cool like community retail center. And then also we're looking at office space, creative office space, you know, which is kind of a new term for places that are a little different from the old typical corporate offices," Tyrell said.
"So just a lot of very different uses. And the idea is that it's going to be a true, walkable, mixed-use environment, where people are going to be around 18 hours a day, that's our current population of people who are going to be there, you know, living there, and also people who are going to be there working and just keep it very sort of vibrant all day long."
Gas Worx, as it's closer to Ybor, will feed off the rich historic architecture in the area. Then, it will add more modern type development as the property feeds into Water Street.
Tyrell said, "So it's not all new buildings, it kind of feels like it's sort of been there for a while. And the idea is that ultimately when somebody walks from Ybor down to Channel district, they won't even really know they're going through a new, a new development area."
When asked where the name Gas Worx came from, Tyrell said, "So it had a lot of, you know, warehouses and industrial features that were kind of tied to that. And actually, one of the biggest landmarks that people don't know today is that there was a very large gas production facility on that site, these very large gas, I'm not sure what you call them but these big sort of round buildings that contain the gas. And so that was a TECO/People's Gas property that was sort of taken out of commission many years ago now and has been remediated. And so obviously, the Gas Worx is sort of a nod to that history."
Expect to see some construction start as soon as summer.
"So we are actually starting construction on the first buildings this summer, but those will be residential buildings, 315 apartments, there will be additional apartment development right behind that, and then we're gonna very quickly start working on the what I mentioned, the warehouse, as we call it. We think that's going to be very important to creating kind of a vibrancy for the neighborhood, and activities, bringing some retail, bringing some restaurants, those kinds of things. And so that's all planned to come, you know, in the next couple of years. So we're really trying to accelerate the development schedule. We think the opportunity is huge. We know the Tampa is growing rapidly and there's a great need for everything, housing, retail, you name it. So, you know, we want to take advantage of that and really build quickly," said Tyrell.