Interest in the first condominium tower in the Westshore Marina District has surpassed the developer’s “very optimistic” expectations for the project.
The sales campaign for Marina Pointe, a 16-story condo tower with 113 units and seven townhouses, kicked off in mid-March. Since then, the developer has taken 40 reservations — which will convert to contracts by late April or early May — with a goal of preselling 65 units before breaking ground on the tower.
Those 40 reserved units represent about $35 million in sales.
“We are moving forward with breaking ground as soon as possible,” Beck Daniel, executive vice president of development for BTI Partners, said Wednesday. “We are already in with our site plan portion of the permitting process.”
The interest in Marina Pointe is another sign of Tampa’s strengthening condo market, which has been dormant for several years. The Sanctuary at Alexandra Place, a 17-story condo tower proposed on Bayshore Boulevard, is moving forward with presales; Virage Bayshore, in which units start at $1 million, is under construction. A new residential developer recently joined the team at Riverwalk Place, a 53-story mixed-use tower in downtown Tampa that’s slated to include around 200 luxury condos.
Fort Lauderdale-based BTI took title to the 51-acre Westshore Marina District property, which is south of Gandy Boulevard and Gandy and Bridge streets, in 2014. BTI is the master developer of the district as well as three planned condo towers.
Marina Pointe, with condos that start in the $600,000s and penthouse units priced from $1.7 million, is the first of those towers. Apartment developments from Miami-based Related Group and Bainbridge Cos. as well as luxury townhouses by Lennar Corp. subsidiary WCI are already under construction.
The Marina Pointe condos will range in size from 1,831 to 3,287 square feet; penthouses range from 3,157 to 3,431 square feet.
“I think it’s inherent demand for a change of product for this market,” Daniel said. “I think a lot of Tampa wants to be on the water but hasn’t been able to afford to be on the water, and a lot of Tampa is at a time where they’re OK sacrificing a little square footage for upscale finishes and amenities.”
The second condo tower won’t begin presales until Marina Pointe is almost sold out, Daniel said. BTI also plans to handle the retail portion of the district — 130,400 square feet — and is talking to potential tenants before beginning design. Daniel said the goal is to have retailers opening “shortly after” the first residents move into the district, which could happen as soon as late 2018 or early 2019.
The marina district is BTI’s first venture in the Tampa Bay market, but likely not the last, Daniel said.
“It’s the first of what we expect to be more opportunities. We like this market,” he said. “Pinellas, Pasco, Sarasota — we’re looking in the entire region.”