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Ybor City Chamber focuses on preserving areas past but plans for future

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Posted at 4:57 AM, Mar 25, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-25 07:58:29-04

YBOR CITY, Fla. — For 92 years the Ybor City Chamber of Commerce has been helping business owners and residents connect.

"Ybor is a phenomenal place, anywhere from the history of Ybor, to what's happening today, and most exciting what's going to be happening in the next five to 10 years in Ybor City. So it is a place that's loved by tourists. It's a place of love by the local community. And it's especially loved by the people that live in work in Ybor City," explained Lee Bell, President and CEO of the Ybor City Chamber of Commerce.

The group is looking toward the future of development in Ybor while also maintaining the area's historic past.

Today, you can find businesses from all walks of life in Ybor, making it one of the most diverse areas in Tampa Bay.

"We have everywhere from one owner stores and establishments, all the way up to multinational international multi-billion dollar companies. The nice thing is you don't see the same thing walking from street to street. We are a true entrepreneur type of establishment in Ybor City. Also, we've got anywhere from restaurants to tattoo parlors to offices to professional services, you name it, we have it," said Bell.

The future of development in Ybor City is bright, from efforts to bring the Tampa Bay Rays to Darryl Shaw's recent plans, like Meatyard and GasWorx.

Bell said, "You just turn around and something new and it's hard for all of us to keep up with everything that's going on. But we also are working on a certain ballpark that we would like to have in Ybor City. We're working on a certain train high-speed train that we would like to come to Ybor City. So all of those things in the next five to 10 years will transform Ybor but we want to maintain that historic National Historic Landmark District which is very important for us."