The $93-million Heritage Square at the Armory project, which seeks to convert the Fort Homer Hesterly Armory property into a mix that includes a hotel, restaurants, cafes, a museum and a day spa, continues to move agonizingly through the tedious land-use and zoning process. The other storyline is this: When the process is over, ironically, it still won’t be the best use for that 10-acre site on North Howard near Interstate 275.
Recall that Armory Partners Group of Tampa wanted to build a video, film and sound studio and develop creative arts businesses, which made much more sense given this city’s chronic need to beef up its allure to the movie/video production industry. The APG scenario also included apartments, retail and a grocery store — pragmatic neighborhood complements all.
But a hotel? A day spa? Wrong approach. Wrong neighborhood.