Bisnow’s 2022 “Tampa State of the Market” Conference
Last week, I attended Bisnow’s Tampa State of the Market conference, which included a keynote address by City of Tampa Mayor Jane Castor. And though I am new to the City, the event’s content seemed familiar.
Mayor Castor referenced the influx of people and businesses coming to the region, touting the city’s quality of life, business-friendly climate, and success in diversifying the economy. She also acknowledged two challenges: affordable housing and transportation. This speech sounded eerily familiar – and then it hit me: she’s talking about Tampa, but it might as well be a conversation about Miami!
The truth is, the Tampa Bay region, is undergoing a transformation that was is being fueled by business and wealth migration. Tampa’s sister city to the South started this trend several years ago and now it’s a statewide phenomenon.
According to Mayor Castor, the City of Tampa issued 2,000 new business licenses last year and $2.5 billion in permitting, all in the midst of the pandemic. Tampa International Airport consistently ranks in the top 10 among North America’s airports for customer satisfaction and the Port of Tampa continues to see record activity.
Mirroring the growth of Tampa, Downtown Miami alone secured commitments from 17 new-to-market firms last year that will create a projected 1,835 high-wage jobs over the next three years through its Follow the Sun incentive program. Port Miami, among the nation’s busiest, and Miami International Airport (MIA) are also experiencing record breaking quarters.
All this is to say that both regions are performing exceptionally well. While there are still things each city can learn from the other (*cough cough* the Riverwalk), a win for Tampa is a win for Miami is a win for Florida.