Behind Midtown East, the Largest Office Tower in Midtown Tampa

Behind Midtown East, the Largest Office Tower in Midtown Tampa

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Designed by Rule Joy Trammell + Rubio, Midtown East Tower in Tampa stands out not only as the tallest building in the metro’s Westshore district, but also through its innovative, sustainable design. The two developers of the project, The Bromley Cos. and Highwoods Properties, are pursuing LEED, Fitwel and Wired certifications for the 18-story building that is scheduled to be completed next year. The 430,000-square-foot structure recently topped out.

Midtown East Tower in Tampa
Upon completion, the $83 million, 430,000-square-foot, 18-story office space will feature column-free floorplates, advanced technology systems and sustainable amenities. Image courtesy of The Bromley Cos.

Midtown East is part of the $1 billion Midtown Tampa mixed-use, master-plan development that connects Westshore and downtown with another central neighborhood, and that has been in the making for years.

Commercial Property Executive sat down with The Bromley Cos. CEO Nicholas Haines to chat about the Midtown East Tower and its impact on Tampa’s skyline and office sector.

Midtown East Tower will be the anchor building within the larger Midtown Tampa project. Besides its height, what else will make the tower unique?

Haines: Midtown East is a 430,000-square-foot, Class A office space and serves as a beacon of sustainability and innovation. With column-free floorplates, advanced tech systems, sustainable amenities and indoor-outdoor connectivity, the 18-story tower offers an ideal workplace experience for modern office tenants. It has unsurpassed 360-degree views of downtown Tampa’s skyline, the Airport/Westshore Business District, downtown St. Petersburg and Tampa Bay to the west and south.

Nicholas Haines, CEO of The Bromley Cos.
Our top objective is to make Midtown Tampa a thriving community hub where residents and visitors can live, work and play in style, said Haines. Image courtesy of The Bromley Cos.

As the largest office tower in the Midtown Tampa neighborhood, Midtown East offers a timeless modern design with an energy-efficient glass curtain wall. It was important to create a meaningful addition to Tampa’s skyline while offering a desirable workspace to recruit and retain national, regional and local talent.

Midtown East will have signage visible from over 300,000 cars per day passing by the building.

Can you expand on the amenities that will be available to Midtown East tenants?

Haines: Within the building, tenants can enjoy sustainable and tech-enhanced amenities, including 26,000-square-foot floorplates offering flexibility and office customization, covered outdoor terraces with furniture, a specially designed customer lounge with private breakout rooms, a podcast studio and ground-floor retail and restaurants. On the ground floor, we have created a conservatory which will be a 3,000-square-foot event, conference and coworking space that can be used by all tenants or reserved for special events.

An additional amenity for office tenants is immediate access to the surrounding 23-acre commercial and residential district. Midtown Tampa offers a robust retail, restaurant and entertainment scene, with national brands like REI, Sephora, Shake Shack, True Foods Kitchen, Whole Foods and The Escape Game—opening later this year—as well as local and regional favorites. The entirely walkable destination allows residents, hotel guests, office tenants and visitors to conveniently and seamlessly enjoy an array of experiences.

Our master-planned development is home to more than 700,000 square feet of office space, 390 rental apartments, 225 hotel rooms and 185,000 square feet of retail space. Midtown Tampa also encompasses a Midtown Commons public space, a dog park, a 3-acre lake and a recreational trail open to the public.

Sustainability is a huge focus for this project. Tell us more about the less common elements that will help Midtown East achieve several certifications.

Haines: Once completed, Midtown East will feature smart energy management systems, a heat-reflective roof, floor-to-ceiling high-performance glass, high-speed destination elevators and floorplans that are adaptable across uses and work formats. It will be the only office building in Tampa with outdoor space incorporated into every single office floor—there are 19 different outdoor spaces in total—including a wrap-around rooftop deck overlooking Raymond James Stadium and downtown Tampa and a third-story terrace connecting to fitness and common spaces.

Midtown East Tower - Terrace
The project includes a wrap-around rooftop deck overlooking Raymond James Stadium and downtown Tampa and a third-story terrace connecting to fitness and common spaces. Image courtesy of The Bromley Cos.

Midtown East will be home to Tampa Electric and Peoples Gas’ new headquarters, chosen in large part for its energy efficiency and storm resistance with an inland location away from flood areas, new construction with significantly improved hurricane resiliency, modern design and enhanced technology, and location central to major transportation routes.

Besides the two companies that you mentioned, Bromley and Highwoods will also be among the tenants of the building, jointly owning floors 10 through 15 and ground level retail. Are there any other tenants that will be occupying space at the upcoming building?

Haines: In addition to Tampa Electric and Peoples Gas, staffing and recruiting agency Insight Global will relocate to Midtown East from its current office space in the Westshore Business District. The firm will occupy a 20,000-square-foot lease with plans to move in in the first quarter of 2025.

We’re confident that the building’s centralized location will draw both local and out-of-market tenants to Midtown East, similar in nature to what we experienced at Midtown West, our first office building in the development. We have leases out with additional global tenants which we look to finalize shortly. These tenants will join our existing roster of national, regional and local tenants which includes Nestle, Greystar, PGIM and Savills, among others, at the existing 100 percent leased Midtown West and Loft Office buildings.

What are the next major milestones in the construction process leading up to the expected completion in 2025? Do you see any challenges on the horizon for the remaining phases of construction?

Haines: While this can be a challenging environment for development, our construction is moving along on schedule to achieve a certificate of occupancy in the first quarter of 2025. Our general contractor, Brasfield & Gorrie, has done a terrific job advancing the project and they are in the process of building out the interior space for TECO simultaneously. The project’s financing is fully in place and our GMP contract with Brasfield has helped insulate us from recent material and labor inflation. With the completion of the office tower, we are also building 1,400 parking spots on an adjacent lot, which is also on schedule.

The office market has been under immense pressure lately, but modern assets in prime locations continue to be in demand. How has office demand evolved in Tampa?

Haines: Despite turbulent conditions across the office sector more broadly, we have seen that there is still great demand for top-tier office space with significant pedestrian-proximate amenities in attractive markets, which is why we felt confident forging ahead with Midtown East. And companies have responded—the two currently completed office properties within Midtown Tampa, Midtown West and The Loft, are 100 percent leased, with tenants including K-Force, Prudential, Primo Water, Gresham Smith, Compass and Kast, among others.

Midtown East at the topping out
Midtown East at the topping out in May. Image by David O., courtesy of The Bromley Cos.

How will Midtown East cater to the needs of the local community and the city of Tampa at large?

Haines: In addition to offering 8,000 square feet of new retail and restaurant space for visitors to explore, Midtown East will further develop the greater Midtown Tampa development, which is already enriching Tampa as a family and pet-friendly, live-work-play-stay community of the future.

We are working with city officials and Tampa’s Economic Development Corp. to attract new businesses to Tampa with the new available office space.

Additionally, Midtown East will continue to strengthen tax revenues and job creation for Tampa through economic growth and by attracting top-tier businesses to the area, along with the ancillary services to support them, just as the Midtown development project has, creating more than 3,000 construction jobs and increasing real estate tax to the city by more than 20 times.

Once Midtown East and other key components are completed, what are your longer-term plans for the Midtown Tampa mixed-use project?

Haines: Our top objective is to make Midtown Tampa a thriving community hub where residents and visitors can live, work and play in style. Midtown sits at the geographic center of the Tampa Bay region, adjacent to major highways and local roads, making it highly accessible to the entire 3-million-person local market. That means ensuring that its workplace offerings are always on the leading edge of what companies and their employees seek out while maintaining a robust ecosystem of shops, restaurants and experiences that make this area a fun place to explore for all of Tampa, even for those not living in or working on the campus itself.

We believe Midtown Tampa can be the beating heart of the wider Tampa community and an exciting, continually reinventive center for guests, residents and workers alike.

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