Encore District Bulletin - Summer 2021
Development Progress Update
Aerial View of the Encore Buildings (Reed, Ella, Tempo, Trio), Job Training Center, Urban Farm, St. James Church, Solar Art at Technology Park, the Independence, Legacy, and Lot 12 (Adderley)
The Job Training Center will offer classes starting in September. The Meacham Urban Farm is open on weekends offering fresh organic vegetables, fruit, eggs, meat, and more. Take a stroll through the Technology Park to view illuminated solar art and a newly landscaped Florida native butterfly garden.
Other buildings currently under construction include the Independence and the Legacy, which will be market-rate multi-family housing opening in early 2022. The Adderley is in the design phase and will have 58 affordable units and 48 market-rate multi-family units above a grocery store with a height of 8 stories.
- Resident Highlights
- President's Message
I wish you all a joyful and safe 2021! The year 2020 presented unprecedented challenges to all as we battled the COVID-19 pandemic. The pervasive virus heavily impacted the economy and significantly affected everyone's cost of living. Many families were hit hard and still trying to make ends meet. We are proud to have made it through, working remotely to provide needed services to all our residents. Within the confines of the pandemic, we continue to find innovative and effective ways to serve our residents.
I am delighted to report that the project at West River is coming along. The Renaissance and Mary Bethune developments were completed in late 2020 and are now fully occupied for a total of 310 units, all affordable. The multi-family developments known as the Boulevards will be completed by fall with a total of 371 units. The last Boulevards tower and the Villas, with 134 units, will be completed by late 2022.
In the last few years, we completed the Tempo at Encore, consisting of 203 units, mixed-use, mixed-income, multi-family development, 70% affordable, and 30% market rate. We recently completed the 7,500 SF Job Training Facility at Encore for adult education and culinary training. We have also completed the Meacham Urban Farm, with an educational facility that consists of 2.1 acres with greenhouses and a farm store to provide fresh organic vegetables, fruits, eggs, meat, and more. It is a high-yielding, bio-intensive farm accessible to the surrounding Tampa neighborhoods with the intention of introducing healthy, nutritious and easily available food to the community. In partnership with the Hillsborough County School District Adult Education Division, the farm will provide cooking classes, educate members of the community on healthy food choices, and offer hospitality and chef training.
I'd like to note that we also have opportunities for employment through our Section 3 program. Part of the objective of Section 3 is to help our residents obtain job training, employment, and contracting prospects. It is definitely a great opportunity, and we encourage all who are interested to inquire through their case managers.
We are always deeply proud of our residents, and this month is no exception. I'd like to congratulate all our former senior residents returning to Mary McLeod Bethune Apartments and Renaissance at West River after construction. I extend congratulations as well to the Geraldine Barnes Awards recipients - Latoria Glover and Bradley Antione. I wish to extend our gratitude to the Bible-Based Fellowship for their profound support through the donation of food, fresh fruits, and vegetables to our residents during these difficult times. In addition, I thank everyone who provided or continues to provide support and encouragement to our residents and those in need as we negotiate the disruptions and uncertainty of the COVID-19 crisis.
The West River redevelopment is the beginning of some major developments within the West Tampa community, connecting to the South Tampa commercial district. In East Tampa, we are looking forward to the prospect of the Robles Park Village redevelopment and memorialization of the Zion Cemetery. The Tampa Housing Authority stands on its commitment to bring you more exciting news in the near future.
Sincerely, Jerome D. Ryans, President / CEO
Tampa Housing Authority - 813.341.9101
Assisted Housing Customer Service - Ext. 5001
Program and Property Services - Ext. 2150
Real Estate Development - Ext. 2630
Board of Commissioners
- James A. Cloar, Chair
- Bemetra Salter Liggins, Vice Chair
- Ben Dachepalli
- Lorena Hardwick
- Sul Hemani
- Parker A. Homans
- Billi Johnson-Griffin
Jerome D. Ryans, President/CEO
Encore District Bulletin - Summer 2021
If you would like to review this newsletter by email, contact Real Estate Development via email.
Solar Technology Park:
- 18,000 SF completed Feb 2021.
- This public art project includes Water Bearers and Cistern Drums that are internally illuminated, and a Shade Structure installed for comfort and enjoyment.
- The park offers a native Florida landscape and butterfly garden.
- Fully operational 2-acre organic farm was completed Feb 2021 and is open on weekends.
- Three greenhouses, an educational facility, and a farm store providing dairy, meat, and vegetables.
- The farm offers more than 40 varieties of vegetables and herbs. Free-range hens provide 30 dozen eggs per week.
- Provides cooking classes, training programs for healthy food choices, hospitality, and chef training.
Job Training Center:
- 7,500 SF completed Mar 2021.
- School Board will maintain, furnish, and operate the building for adult education on a year-round basis.
St. James Church:
- 100-year-old Church, fully restored per the City of Tampa Historic Preservation ARC requirements.
- Will be re-purposed into Tampa's finest African-American Cultural Museum.
Tampa Housing Authority has long been a contributing resource for employment opportunities through the Section 3 program. Its function is to offer recipients of certain HUD financial assistance to the greatest extent possible by providing job training, employment, and contract opportunities for low or very low-income residents in connection with projects and activities in their neighborhoods. Section 3 is a starting point to obtain job training, employment, and contracting opportunities. From this integral foundation, coupled with other resources, comes the opportunity for economic advancement and self-sufficiency.
Examples of Opportunities Include:
- Appliance Repair
- Tile Setting
Contact Tina Washington, Section 3 representative, to become certified as a Section 3 resident or Section 3 business - 813.341.9101 ext. 3500.
Former Central Park Village Resident Returns
Cajaeda Robinson was a child when she and her family were relocated from Central Park Village in 2007. In December 2020, Ms. Robinson and her own family were given the chance to move into one of the newly developed Encore buildings. Returning to the newly redeveloped site brings them sustainability, benefits, and new opportunities. Welcome back, Ms. Robinson!
The Elam Leadership Institute provided 79 Pomander Holiday Ball gift bags for the residents of Reed, Trio, Tempo, and Ella.
The Tampa Housing Authority hosted the Youth Financial Literacy Program for Encore residents. Eighteen youths completed the program.
A Brighter Holiday
The Tampa Housing Authority provided four families with gifts through "Adopt a Family."
Choice Neighborhood Initiative participated in the activity bags giveaway, distributing 200 bags to seniors at the Reed and the Ella.
Section 3 Success
Oliver Ebron Jr., a resident of Tempo, is currently working at the Urban Farm under the Section 3 program while attending school. The farm is located within the Encore District on Scott Street, directly across from the Temp.
Counseling Services Offered
Therapeutic counseling services were offered to Encore residents through the Florida Network. These services included individual, group, and family therapy, as well as crisis intervention. Six families received services, and eleven families are being assessed to begin services.