BUSCH GARDENS revealed plans for a new roller coaster for spring 2019. Tigris will be Florida’s tallest launch roller coaster, catapulting its riders 150 feet into the air at speeds of 60 miles per hour. This will be the eighth roller coaster in the park, joining the list that includes the kid-friendly coaster, Air Grover, and the thrilling dive coaster, Sheikra.
Two new trophy office buildings are coming to WATER STREET TAMPA and Channelside. The 19-story and 20-story buildings will add about 1 million square feet of office space to foster expanding companies in downtown Tampa. The WELL certified buildings will have nature-focused features that are designed to promote worker productivity and reduce stress.
Tampa Bay Lightning general manager STEVE YZERMAN has stepped down. Yzerman, named the NHL’s General Manager of the Year in 2014-2015, had held the position since 2010. He will be an adviser to the new GM, Julien BriseBois, for the 2018-2019 season.
Construction of The Sail Plaza and BIG RAY’S FISH CAMP began on the Riverwalk. The two new features will add more seating, shade and restrooms for visitors. A full-kitchen will also be added to the restaurant. This will be the second Tampa-area location for Big Ray’s Fish Camp, owned by Nick Cruz. The project’s expected completion date is April 2019.
Tampa was ranked No. 20 of 180 on the list of MOST FUN cities in America, according to a study done by WalletHub. Based on 65 different metrics, such as movie costs and the number of breweries, Tampa scored high in entertainment and low prices. The city also tied with three others for having the most festivals per capita.
Fabio Viviani of Bravo’s “Top Chef” opened the long-awaited OSTERIA on the first floor of Nine15 at the end of September. The restaurant will serve traditional Italian cuisine, burgers and more, but will only serve dinner in the beginning. This is the second Osteria to be opened in the nation.
Sears at UNIVERSITY MALL is one of the 46 stores getting the axe by Sears Holdings this year. With its official closing date in November, its disappearance will leave only one Sears standing in Tampa Bay, the one in WestShore Plaza. University Mall itself is transitioning into Uptown Tampa, a multi-use, non-mall facility.
FLORIDA HOSPITAL filed plans for a multiphase project on 4.15 acres of land that includes a new 12-bed emergency center and medical facility in Carrollwood. The project would be on Sheldon Road between Linebaugh Avenue and Gardner Road.
After being approved for the third year, the DOWNTOWNER has been seriously upgraded. Users of the app-based shuttle are being picked up by some of the nicest cars on the block: the Tesla Model X SUV. With falcon wing back doors and an electric ride to one’s destination, the Model X has a range of over 200 miles on one charge. However, this won’t last forever. The Tesla program ends in March with the expiration of the cars’ lease. The Downtowner fleet also includes Chevrolet Bolts.
Tampa Bay’s oldest bakery, ALESSI BAKERY, celebrated its 106th anniversary in September. Established in 1912, the business has been passed down for four generations within the Alessi family. The bakery is known for its baked goods and custom wedding cakes.
For the first time since its creation in 1994, Downtown Tampa’s Special Services District will be expanding into TAMPA HEIGHTS. After the Tampa City Council approved the project on August 23, the actual expansion went into effect on October 1. The SSD is focused on improving safety, maintenance, economic development, beautification and other services in the area.
WALT DISNEY WORLD has announced a new pricing plan that would entail fluctuating prices depending on the day of the year. A ticket for one day, one park admission will be between $109 and $129. High-demand days, like holidays, will be $129, while lower-demand days will be $109. An interactive calendar will be introduced that will facilitate navigating when prices will be higher or lower, allowing guests to efficiently plan their trip to the park.
A new website is connecting the people of Tampa and St. Petersburg area with the best dining deals in the area. EATCHEAP.CO, a website exclusively for Tampa and St. Pete, applies filters of location, time and day and then generates a list of what deals are going on at that time.