Community Redevelopment Agency

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City of Tarpon Springs Community Redevelopment Agency

Purpose Statement:
The primary goal of the Community Redevelopment Agency is to guide private and public initiatives for encouraging investment in Downtown Tarpon Springs, improving infrastructure and physical characteristics of the area, guide public and private initiatives for increasing economic development and wealth in the area, and improve the quality of life for residents.

City of Tarpon Springs Community Redevelopment Agency Background

The Florida Community Redevelopment Act of 1969 (Florida Statutes: Title XI, Chapter 163, Part III) provides a vehicle for local communities to form a Community Redevelopment Agency (CRA) and create a Redevelopment Trust Fund through Tax Increment Financing (TIF) for financing improvements within a target area.  The City of Tarpon Springs established its CRA with the adoption of Resolution 2001-35. In 2003 the CRA was expanded to include the Pappas’ Restaurant property, also known as the Northwest Expansion Area.

CRA Boundaries Map

The 227-acre CRA comprises the central business district along Pinellas Avenue north from the Anclote River and south to Meres Blvd., including Downtown and the Lemon Street corridors. Community Redevelopment Area Map.

Historical Perspective

The City of Tarpon Springs Board of Commissioners on December 12, 2000, adopted the Downtown Development Action Plan (DDAP). This plan suggested strategies to revitalize the Downtown area, including the recommendation to establish a CRA. In April 2001, the Board of Commissioners determined that a blighted area existed within the City, and adopted Resolution 2001-22, finding that a Community Development Agency be created to carry out activities within the boundaries of that area. In August 2001, the Board of Commissioners adopted Ordinance 2001-23, the Downtown Redevelopment Plan which guides actions within the CRA boundaries, and Ordinance 2001-24 establishing a Redevelopment Trust Fund.

CRA Board and Meetings

The CRA holds meetings as needed to help guide the direction of community redevelopment.  Meetings are held at City Hall; 324 E. Pine St. Meetings are generally held before or after the Board of Commissioners’ Regular Sessions and the agendas are posted with them.  Visit the Board of Commissioners’ Agenda page for dates and agendas as they become available. The Board of Commissioners acts as the CRA Board.

CRA Board Members

Address of the Chairperson and members is 324 E. Pine St., Tarpon Springs, FL 34689.

Costa Vatikiotis, Chairperson,

Frank DiDonato, CRA Member,

Michael Eisner, CRA Member,

Panagiotis (Peter) Koulias, CRA Member,

John Kolianos, CRA Member,


Florida Commission on Ethics:

CRA Incentive Programs

To stimulate and leverage investment by businesses in the CRA, and to attract and retain businesses, the CRA offers four types of incentive grants: a Building Code Assistance Grant, Façade Improvement Grant Program, Restaurant Recruitment Grant Program, and a Photo/Mural Grant.  Grant packages and forms may be found below.

Activities accomplished within the CRA since its inception include:

Pinellas & Tarpon Ave. Streetscape Design and Infrastructure
Safford Avenue Streetscape
Lemon Street Reconstruction and Pedestrian Lighting
Special Area Plan Creation
Wayfinding and Decorative Street Signs
Historic Markers and Building Plaque
Historic City Clock
Lighting upgrades throughout Downtown
Purchase of properties on E. and W. Tarpon Avenue
143 E. Tarpon Ave. Parking Lot and Restrooms
Incentive grants
Parking lot leases
Landscaping and Beautification

CRA Annual Reports may be found below.

CRA Budget Information

The CRA Audited Financial Statements, annual budgets and financial information are found below.

Florida Department of Financial Services – Local Government Financial Reporting webpage:


Staff Contact Information:

Karen Lemmons, Economic Development Manager
Telephone: 727.938.3711 extension 2253
City Hall Mailing Address:  P.O. Box 5004, Tarpon Springs, FL 34688-5004
City Hall is located at 324 East Pine Street, Tarpon Springs, FL 34689
Economic Development / CRA Office: 61 W. Tarpon Avenue, Tarpon Springs, FL 34689