It’s a question that Hillsborough County Commissioner Victor Crist is proposing to Tampa officials and their surrounding communities.
Earlier today, we brought you the story of the Port of Tampa’s cruise ship dilemma. With the advent and projected growth of mega-sized cruise ships that simply can’t fit under, or between, the pillars that support the Sunshine Skyway Bridge, the Port of Tampa is facing a serious potential blow to its cruise ship industry. One idea proposed to ameliorate this future problem was to build a new, multi-dock pier on the Gulf side of the Pinellas peninsula that would take the Sunshine Skyway Bridge out of the equation.
Then there are the Tampa Bay Rays, St. Pete’s kind-0f-beloved Major League Baseball teams that’s managed to grow into a seriously good team in the past few years, but still seems to face the attendance problems of a losing, weak-market team. Many have proposed moving the Rays’ home to, coincidentally, a couple steps away from the Port of Tampa in the Channelside area.
Officials and residents in both cities are, understandably, not completely happy with the prospect of these losses.
Commissioner Crist believes both communities have assets they simply can’t grow anymore, but if traded, each community could breathe life into their new possession – Tampa with the Rays and St. Petersburg with the new port.
This is definitely an interesting perspective that seems like it could gain traction throughout the area. What do you think Tampa? Would you give up the Port of Tampa for the Tampa Bay Rays?