Construction launched at East Tampa Recreation Complex

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Florida Construction News staff writer

Skanska representatives joined dozens of community members and city officials to break ground at a recreation complex in Fair Oaks Park last week.

The $34.7-million project, approved by Tampa city council last month, will be one of the largest projects undertaken by the parks and recreation department, with a 33,055-sq. ft. center, dedicated space for seniors, classrooms, and an indoor basketball court. Also, the building will have a large collection of solar panels to cut energy costs.

“Fair Oaks Park has served the community for generations, but it is small, outdated, and long overdue for a complete overhaul,” said Mayor Jane Castor. “Once we are done, East Tampa will be home to one of the city’s most magnificent parks, serving the young and the young at heart.”

The site covers 10.25 acres and will include one outdoor basketball court and two outdoor pickleball courts, a multipurpose sports field, 1.5 miles of walking trails and 26 benches.

Work also includes adding a lighted aerator to Herbert D. Carrington Sr. Community Lake, along with a fenced-in playground with fully inclusive play elements.

“The new Fair Oaks Park will be a generational victory for the community and for the City of Tampa,” said Council Member Gwendolyn Henderson. “East Tampa has had a series of extraordinary investments, like the City Center at Hanna Avenue, The Skills Center, and other impactful projects that are spurring the economy and uplifting the community. Fair Oaks Park keeps this momentum going and we could not be more excited for the bright future that lies ahead.”

The new recreation center is expected to open in Fall 2025, and the entire complex is scheduled to be completed in Spring 2026.

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