Harborview: Lease land for low-rise retail, restaurant and residential. Require environmentally friendly buildings (LEED certified) including solar and electric requirements. Landscape with native plants. Use of form-based codes to create inviting spaces that will draw people and businesses. City Hall: Renovate or rebuild. Explore leasing to artists for studio space that the public could visit, which has succeeded in places like Alexandria, Va., and St. John’s, Newfoundland and Labrador. North Ward School: The city should consider purchasing it and leasing to a hotel that would preserve the classrooms to create a unique hotel option.
I think the city hall/(Clearwater Marine Aquarium) site are perfect for additional high rise residential. We need more people in downtown with disposable income that will support restaurant and retail, much like the St. Pete model. The Harborview site is more difficult. I do not think it should have height because you want private development to the east and you want to retain view corridors. I would prefer a restaurant complex with five different themes. The first four I would pursue existing successful restaurateurs like Frank Chivas, Frenchy Preston, Chris Ponte and Steve Westphal. The fifth space I would like to see a revolving opportunity for an outside chef to come in for six month periods that would always offer something new. I would also make a large alfresco dining experience part of the plan so the restaurants could take advantage of the terrific views from the bluff.
A. The citizen's conceptual plan included development of these two sites. It is important to develop the Harborview site as an active “edge” to serve as the link from an active downtown and the active vibrant park. B. Either site will require approval at referendum, so the approach should maximize public involvement in the ultimate decision. C. Some consideration is needed to provide parking accessibility for Main Library patrons.
I would like to see a community or cultural arts center on the property. A place that draws our local families down to the area to help get it going again.
Most needed are mixed-income apartments and a parking structure that can service all of downtown. I'd love to see a foodie destination along the lines of Tampa's Sparkman Wharf or a theater company for live stage productions. Keep the properties out of the hands of Scientologists, who have secretly purchased almost all remaining downtown land. There must be limits to how much land a "non-profit" owns in an area needed for business. We are essentially building them a lovely green campus that stretches from the Sandcastle to the Fort Harrison Hotel. They don't also need to boast about how they now own city hall, too.
The current Harborview site component of Imagine Clearwater is questionable as its financial mechanisms are unrealistic. The attraction of downtown investment and development outside of Scientology or its members has been extremely challenging for years and the proposed cost per sqaure foot on the site is not compatable or comparable to the surrounding downtowns of Tampa and St. Petersburg and cannot be evaluated as such. Stakeholder input and cooperation from our community should be what drives both the sites of the old city hall and the Harborview as the Imagine Clearwater plans continue to move forward.
We should explore all potential uses of these spaces. I support, however, the City maintaining ownership and ultimate control of these important waterfront parcels and community assets.
In a manner that would attract more people, more frequently to our downtown area and only after consulting and acceptance by our residents.
The city hall is a prime location and could be repurposed to be a high-quality boutique hotel so that tourists and locals could stay overnight downtown. The amphitheater will be a great place for outdoor concerts and other events. We need to involve all our neighborhoods so that we have buy-in from all of the city residents.
The most important and first step in redeveloping these key sites, as well as the site which was going to be leased to the (Clearwater) Marine Aquarium, collectively the “development sites” is to obtain citizen input. I oppose the present council’s idea of sending out requests for proposals to developers at this stage, without more opportunity to hear from the community as to what is desired for these important development sites. The development at these sites will be phased and will not be completed until after the waterfront park, so there is no need to rush. Throughout the process, I would advocate establishing key guidelines which would be made a part of any solicitation package for requests for proposals: These waterfront bluff properties are the City’s treasure and they are not for sale. If the development sites are to be used for nonpublic purposes like hotels or residential apartments, it will need to be on a long-term lease, license or similar agreement. To develop increased population downtown there will necessarily be private development of a site(s) for a hotel or housing, but we need to also require “public purpose” portions for at least one or more of the development sites set aside for cultural, arts or museum uses — many residents want to see a children’s museum where our vacant city hall sits. There should be at least one commercial level for restaurants and shops for any buildings constructed on the development sites. A portion of the residential apartments should be designed to assist with our workforce housing needs. We need to expand parking — not just to satisfy the needs of each development site, but to also help with the woeful shortage of parking for the entire Imagine Clearwater plan.
City staff is already preparing requests for proposals for the entire stretch of Osceola from the Harborview site to south of Pierce (Street), south of the old city hall. Harborview (S Osceola Avenue at Cleveland Street) site will be gateway to the park; north of that, towards the library, will probably be condo, hotel or office on leased city property, with restaurants and stores on first floor. Something similar with city hall site; requests for proposals will be going out soon. The main idea is to develop the real estate with structures that will bring income to the city, to help fund the park. We are anticipating leasing the properties; any prospective sale of city property would go to referendum.
We need to develop a partnership between private enterprise (developers) and the city to determine what might move the city to the point where we also have a "booming downtown." We need fresh ideas and new possibilities for these sites and let's give city staff the advantage of the input from private enterprise.
In a fiscally responsible matter that is built to conduct the basic functions of city business.