18-story condo tower with rooftop pool moves forward in downtown Sarasota (Renderings)

An Illinois developer is moving forward with plans to build an 18-story luxury condominium tower in downtown Sarasota.

XAC Developers said Friday that the company has pulled a permit for The DeMarcay, a 39-unit tower slated for 33 S. Palm Ave. It was the last day the group could secure a permit under the existing site plan for the property.

Per the original site plan, XAC Developers will donate $50,000 to the Palm Avenue Merchant’s Association. The developer and the city of Sarasota have agreed… …read more

Readers share their ‘what it costs’ stories on social media

There can be sticker shock when relocating from one city to another. When I tried to sublet an apartment in New York City for a summer internship, that shock left me a little worse for wear.

Monthly rent in St. Petersburg was running me $700 a month. Monthly rent in Manhattan was going to cost me $2,500 a month. Thank goodness it was only two months!

Read the What it Costs cover story

About a week ago, we asked readers to share their own “what it costs” stories on social media.

“I came… …read more

South Tampa land prices are ‘shooting for the moon’

If it were based purely on demand, retail development would be cropping up all over South Tampa.

But assembling the necessary acreage to accommodate new buildings and provide ample parking is next to impossible — which makes the Shoppes of South Dale all the more noteworthy.

Paradise Ventures Inc., based in Safety Harbor, broke ground this week on the new retail center, which includes a 20,000-square-foot Crunch Fitness and a 14,000-square-foot strip center.

Chris Zimmerman, vice president of… …read more

Firefighters battle blaze at Town ‘n’ Country area apartments

A two-alarm fire broke out early this morning just after 5:30 a.m. at an apartment complex in the Town ‘n’ Country area of Tampa.

Hillsborough County Fire Rescue crews are on the scene at the Captiva Club Apartments at 4401 Club Captiva Dr., according to ABC Action News.(See map below.) It is near Kelly Road and Memorial Highway.

See tweets below from local news outlets.

Bay News 9 reports that eight total units were severely damaged but there are no injuries reported. …read more

What property owners must know about eminent domain and Donald Trump’s love of it

“Eminent domain is wonderful.” This is a recent quote from presidential candidate and billionaire developer Donald Trump. It’s a position he’ll have to defend within and outside his party.

If you own real estate or just want to understand this political issue, you should know three things about eminent domain: How it worked for generations as intended by the Framers, how local governments have misapplied it, and (more recently), how the Supreme Court rolled property owners under the bus.… …read more

Business economists dial back growth expectations for next year

Business economists downgraded their expectations for GDP growth next year to 2.7 percent, but most expect the Federal Reserve to start raising interest rates this December.

That’s according to a National Association for Business Economics survey of 50 professional forecasters. Back in June, the panel had projected a GDP growth rate of 2.9 percent next year.

They expect the economy will grow 2.5 percent this year.

The strong dollar and China’s economic slowdown are holding back the economy,… …read more

3 things to look for when C1, CenterState and other banks release 3Q earnings

One gauge of the nation’s current economic health will start to emerge this week, as national and regional banks release their third quarter earnings.

Here are three key indicators to keep an eye on, and why they matter to your business.

Most banks are likely to say their loan portfolios grew in the third quarter, according to analysts at Raymond James & Associates. Loan growth is a positive sign, because it means businesses are borrowing money to hire, to buy real estate or equipment, or to… …read more

Court blocks EPA from enforcing Clean Water Rule anywhere in U.S.

A federal appeals court temporarily blocked an Environmental Protection Agency regulation that would subject more bodies of water to Clean Water Act permitting requirements.

Opponents of the Clean Water Rule say it’s so broad that it covers certain types of ditches, ponds and streams that only flow when it rains. They contend the rule makes it more difficult for property owners to make minor improvements and interferes with local land use decisions.

The EPA contends the regulation is necessary… …read more

Developer breaks ground on luxury townhouses in downtown St. Pete

A luxury townhouse development in downtown St. Petersburg has broken ground.

Regents Lane, as the development is called, will consist of 20 townhouses at 141 Fourth Ave. N., about a block and a half from Beach Drive.

Tampa-based NJR Property Investments LLC has reservations for five of the units, a spokeswoman said Friday. Those reservations are expected to convert to contracts — with nonrefundable deposits — within a month.

The houses, which were announced in August, are priced from $848,500… …read more

Tampa sees construction permit values soar in fiscal ’15, beat previous record

The number of construction permits pulled in the city of Tampa fell year over year in fiscal 2015, but the total dollar value rose by nearly $400 million.

In fiscal ’15, 23,161 building permits (16,855 residential and 6,306 commercial) totaling $2.4 billion were pulled. In fiscal ’14, the city had a total of 34,500 permits totaling $2.03 billion.

“Not only did construction services increase their permitting value by nearly $400 million, but they did so with a lean and mean staff,” Tampa Mayor Bob… …read more