Highwoods, Bromley JV to Develop Tampa Office Tower

By: Gail Kalinoski

Two utility companies will relocate their headquarters to Midtown East.

Highwoods Properties Inc. and The Bromley Cos. are building Midtown East, an 18-story, 432,000-square-foot office building that will be the latest addition to the $1 billion Midtown Tampa mixed-use project in Tampa, Fla.

The tower in the city’s Westshore submarket will also become the new headquarters of Tampa Electric and Peoples Gas, which will own 11 floors, or about 298,000 square feet of the building. Bromley is the lead developer of Midtown Tampa, a 23-acre mixed-use development at the intersection of Interstate 275 and N Dale Mabry Highway.

Construction is slated to begin early next year and be completed by the first quarter of 2025. The Highwoods and Bromley joint venture will own the remaining 134,000 square feet of the building upon completion. The space will include five floors of office (floors 10 through 15) and ground-level retail. The total anticipated investment for the joint venture’s share of the overall project is $83 million. Further details on how much Tampa Electric and Peoples Gas will be investing in the building were not disclosed. The two utilities are part of TECO Energy and subsidiaries of Emera Inc.

Highwoods, a Raleigh, N.C.,-based office REIT, and Bromley, a New York City-based developer, are also joint developers and partners on Midtown West, a $71 million, 150,000-square-foot office building completed in the second quarter of 2021 at Midtown Tampa. Highwoods owns an 80 percent interest in the Midtown West joint venture and also manages the office leases.

As of Sept. 30, Midtown West was 92.5 percent leased with tenants including professional staffing services firm Kforce and Primo Water, a water dispenser company, that both relocated their headquarters to the new building. Other tenants include South State Bank, Kast Construction and PGIM Inc.

Ted Klinck, president & CEO of Highwoods, said in a prepared statement the proven success of Midtown West, which broke ground in late 2019 shortly before the pandemic hit in early 2020, demonstrates how quickly Midtown Tampa has become an office destination for Tampa-area companies.

Reasons for HQ relocation

Nicholas Haines, Bromley Cos. CEO, said in a prepared statement Midtown Tampa is serving as a catalyst for growth across the city as well as a place for the community to live, work, shop, dine and connect. He noted as the home of two nearly fully leased office towers and the new headquarters for Tampa Electric and Peoples Gas, Midtown has established itself as a dynamic location with innovative and sustainable building designs and best-in-class amenities.

Tampa Electric and Peoples Gas will be moving from their joint space at TECO Plaza, 702 N. Franklin St. in downtown Tampa, where they have been since 1981. Their lease expires in 2025 just as the new space at Midtown East will be ready. The companies will have more than 900 employees at Midtown East.

Archie Collins, president & CEO of Tampa Electric, said in prepared remarks the new space will be energy-efficient and storm-resistant enabling the utility to better serve its customers. Collins said the companies are making an investment in resiliency because the new location is on higher ground and further inland, away from potential flood zones.

Other reasons cited for choosing Midtown East include construction that meets modern codes and efficiency standards with significantly improved hurricane resiliency; modern design with enhanced technology and sustainable elements that align with the companies’ clean energy goals; open office designs to foster collaboration and space to accommodate future growth with ample parking and a location close to the interstate.