Discovering the downtown Tampa you didn't know

In preparation of APA Florida's 2016 Annual Conference and in honor of the good work being achieved by URBN Tampa Bay (United Residents for Better Neighborhoods), here's a look at Tampa's urban core during the 20th century!

1. A view of Tampa’s skyline and the Atlantic Coast Line Railroad’s freight station along the Hillsborough River in 1922. (State Archives of Florida)

2. The Hillsborough County Courthouse in 1913. This building was demolished in 1953 and replaced with the Tampa Police Department Building at Franklin and Madison Streets. (State Archives of Florida)

3. Looking east down Cass St. in May 1975. (State Archives of Florida)

4. Bird’s eye view of downtown in 1955. (State Archives of Florida)

5. A 1989 view of the downtown skyline, looking west from the Channel District. (State Archives of Florida)

6. Hotel Hillsborough dominates Tampa’s skyline in 1922. A surface parking lot currently occupies the former hotel site. (State Archives of Florida)

7. A busy scene at the intersection of Franklin and Zack Streets during the 1930s. (State Archives of Florida)

8. A view of Tampa’s skyline in 1981 from the waterfront of Port of Tampa. The construction of One Tampa City Center can be seen in the background. Standing at 537 feet, two feet taller than Jacksonville’s Independent Square, it was the tallest building in Florida until 1984. (State Archives of Florida)

9. A mid-20th century view of downtown from the University of Tampa. (State Archives of Florida)

10. The Southern Brewing Company opened at 700 East Zack Street in 1934. For years, it’s Silver Bar Ale was a popular drink in taverns all across the region. In 1959 and 1961, Schlitz and Anhueser-Busch opened breweries in Tampa, driving down prices and saturating the local market. Unable to compete, downtown’s Southern Brewing Company ceased operations for good in 1963. Courtesy of Bob Kay at

11. Ybor City’s 7th Avenue on August 16, 1926. (State Archives of Florida)

12. Looking north on Franklin Street from Lafayette Street in 1911. (State Archives of Florida)