The BPIB unanimously approved a $48MM capital improvement project to develop Phase 2 of The Bay
SARASOTA, Fla. – September 15, 2022 – In a 5-0 vote on Wednesday, September 14, the Bay Park Improvement Board (BPIB) unanimously approved a $48 million capital improvement project to develop Phase 2 of The Bay.
Approval of this Phase 2 Capital Improvement project and funding will enable The Bay Park Conservancy to complete the circle of the new and improved public park, south of the 10th St public boat launch over the next 4 years from 2023 to 2026.
The City of Sarasota and Sarasota County created a new tax increment financing (TIF) district in 2020 to capture increases in property tax revenue from within the district’s boundaries, setting aside those funds for capital improvement projects for the redevelopment of 53 acres of city-owned land. These TIF revenues may only be used for capital improvements at the park, a portion of a new Sarasota Performing Arts Center, and bicycle, pedestrian, and multimodal facilities within the district.
“As we approach the Grand Opening of The Bay, this milestone approval by the Bay Park Improvement Board enables The Bay Park Conservancy to accelerate the construction of the park and open more park – faster and for the benefit of the entire community,” said AG Lafley, Founding CEO of the Bay Park Conservancy.
Following the September 14 approval, The Bay Park will present these Capital Improvement Plans and Projects to the City Commission on October 3, and the Board of County Commissioners on October 11.
For more information about the TIF, please view the following informational video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B2Wg0NYbCyI
About The Bay
The Bay is a new, signature, public park along Sarasota Bay. Designed to be “one park for all,” The Bay is open and accessible, free and welcoming to the full and rich diversity of the community, now and for generations to come.
The Bay preserves, restores and transforms precious city-owned land along Sarasota Bay into a blue and green oasis – providing a sustainable bayfront gathering place for the community to experience a wide range of park uses, free programs and events.
The park will cost about $150 million and will take about 10 years, over 3 or more phases to complete. The Blue Pagoda serves as a welcome center for visitors and an on-site office for The Bay Park Conservancy. For more information or general inquiries about this initiative, please visit www.thebaysarasota.org or call 941-203-5316.
About The Bay’s Grand Opening
10 Days at The Bay is a ten-day grand opening celebration in recognition of the opening of Phase 1 of The Bay Park.
The celebration runs from October 14-23, and includes more than 90 FREE events – something for everyone to enjoy – including family fun days, food and cultural festivals, headlining musical acts by We The Kings and Etana, Boo! at The Bay Halloween, Sarasota’s first Parktoberfest and more.
The entire celebration is intertwined with everyday programming including: daily guided kayak tours in partnership with Ride and Paddle, fitness classes provided by CoreSRQ, free yoga taught by local yogis, guided nature walks, and live music every day around sunset. Throughout the ten days, a number of local performing arts organizations will make an appearance including Westcoast Black Theatre Troupe, Sarasota Orchestra, Sarasota Youth Opera, and more. Learn more at www.10DaysAtTheBay.org
About The Bay Park Conservancy
The Bay Park Conservancy (BPC) was formed as a 501c3 not-for-profit organization in 2019 to implement the master plan approved by the Sarasota City Commission to conserve 53 acres of public land for a signature park on Sarasota Bay. The BPC entered a long-term partnership with the City and will fund, develop, operate, and sustain the park for the benefit of the community, now, and for generations to come. For more information, visit www.thebaysarasota.org.