Market Ripples to Watch as Bayfront Connectivity Rolls


SARASOTA, FLORIDA, September 5, 2017 – It looks like we’re going to see home construction and market activity rising a notch higher north of Rosemary District as a ripple effect of the continuing implementation of Sarasota’s Bayfront Connectivity Plan. This plan initiated in 2009 aims to tame vehicular traffic on the Tamiami Trail (US 41) and make it more pedestrian-friendly, an initiative that should contribute greatly to many Sarasota homes for sale.

One of the plan’s key components is the construction of roundabouts at strategic intersections on the Trail. Two are set to be built this fall on the northern stretch of US 41: one on 10th Street and another on 14th Street. These are just the first pair of at least 16 roundabouts reported set to be built throughout the city in the next six years.

New Condo on the Drawing Board

Risdon on 5th

The co-principals of Sarasota firm Halflants + Pichette Studio for Modern Architecture—Michael Halflants and John Pichette—are amongst the stakeholders in the local building sector who definitely have a heads-up on these North Trail developments.

In August, the Halflants–Pichette duo was reported to have bought a vacant lot fronting the Trail across from Whitaker Gateway Park between 14th and 15th Streets. Halflants was quoted in a media interview as saying that they plan to develop the site as a mixed-use condominium called Whitaker Lofts with 21 residential units built over retail space.

Significantly, five housing designs of the Halflants + Pichette Studio are currently amongst the new picks of Sarasota condos for sale in the resurgent Rosemary District. These architectural renditions include those for the 28-unit Risdon on 5th, the six townhouses of Vanguard Lofts, and the six luxury condos of Zahrada.

Dynamic Pedestrian Environment

Halflants + Pichette Studio meticulously designed the five Rosemary projects to connect to the street and thus help create a dynamic pedestrian environment. This tactic should work well for the location of the planned Whitaker Lofts just north of the planned 14th Street roundabout.

Just across 14th street from the property is the popular Reserve coffee shop, while opposite west spreads the waterfront Whitaker Gateway Park which provides a playground, walking and fitness trail, a picnic area with gazebo and grill, and a fishing pier.

More leisure facilities could be expected in this area. There are plans to link Whitaker Gateway Park southward to Centennial Park, onward to the Van Wezel Performing Arts Hall and the rest of the city-owned waterfront incubating for a multi-million dollar development under Bayfront 2020. There is also a plan to extend the popular Legacy Trail north to Payne Park, passing through the eastern edge of Central Cocoanut area of the Halflants–Pichette’s newly bought lot.

Some Local Market Picks

The Strand

North of this property, one condo construction project is already underway and stand to reap benefits from these planned projects and the 10th and 14th Street roundabouts’ forthcoming construction. This development, called The Strand, is programmed for 160 condos to be built on the southern banks of Whitaker Bayou.

Positive impact from the above-mentioned city projects could likewise extend to some Sarasota homes for sale in historic neighborhoods along the North Trail. The market opportunities here include listings of 1940–1950s vintage homes for sale at Valencia Terrace priced around the $500s, featuring floor plans in the 1,100–1,600-square-foot range.