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Change is here: First building opens in West Tampa redevelopment, signaling a renaissance for the area

Thursday marked the beginning of a new era in West Tampa where local leaders formally opened the first of several new apartment buildings.

TAMPA, Fla. — Even amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, redevelopment throughout the city of Tampa is moving forward.

Thursday marked the beginning of a new era in West Tampa where city, community and housing authority leaders formally opened the first of several new apartment buildings in the West River development.

The new living spaces replace the old North Boulevard Homes, a public housing development built in the 1940s that over time struggled with poverty and crime. Former Mayor Bob Buckhorn and THA officials led the charge to demolish the units and replace them with a mixed-income community along the river.

The Renaissance at West River is a 6-story building for seniors with 1-3 bedroom units. There are multiple buildings under construction to open in the coming months and years.

RELATED: Changing Face of Tampa: Winners and losers in the push for redevelopment

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