By Brian Bokor

Welcome to your August update of new projects in the greater Brandon/Riverview area. Please check respective Facebook pages or websites for the most recent information.

In Brandon, contractors have been repurposing the closed Sweet Tomatoes restaurant on SR 60 west of Falkenburg Rd. into Sushi Yama, featuring Japanese and Asian cuisine, as well as converting the old Toys “R” Us building in the Westfield Brandon mall area into the new Tampa/Brandon campus of Rasmussen University, specializing in nursing education but also offering degrees in business, design, education, health sciences and justice studies.

ModWash car wash submitted plans for a store on Falkenburg Rd. just south of Palm River Rd., adjacent to the 7-Eleven on the east side. Brandon Medical South, a 40,000 sq. ft. medical facility will be built on Kings Ave. between Oakfield Dr. and Lumsden Ave. The southeast corner of SR 60 and Miller Rd. will see the existing Hungry Howie’s and barber shop demolished, making room for a new Hungry Howie’s without seating, and reduced to 1,320 sq. ft., along with a proposed 2,600 sq. ft. Andy Frozen Custard added, with both appearing to offer drive-through service.

In Riverview, the Hillsborough County School Board has recently submitted plans to add 594 seats to Collins Elementary along with a new 20,000 sq. ft. gymnasium and additions to the music, dining and media center and convert the school from an elementary school to prekindergarten through eighth grade. Additionally, the request includes the addition of shared park and recreational facilities as well as a 15,000 sq. ft. community center that includes a playground with basketball courts on the northern parcel to be shared with the public. KB Homes will be building 176 single family homes south of Symmes Rd. at the Riverview Flower Farm location between Fern Hill Dr. and U.S. 301.

The Shops at Waterset Crossing will reside on the west side of Waterset Blvd. south of Big Bend Rd. The plaza has a “lease pending with a national grocer” as the anchor store with outparcels available for retail and restaurant opportunities. This shopping center will essentially be sandwiched between 293 D.R. Horton Townhomes on the east side of Waterset Blvd. and 343 apartments to the west of the project.

The Belmont area keeps exploding with the announcement of the Sumner Crossing shopping plaza on the northeast corner with CVS, Starbucks, Lockhart Storage and Camel Car Wash planned for the 15-acre site, with additional outparcels available. Directly across U.S. 301 on the northwest corner, the Strathmore Real Estate Group is marketing 4-plus acres of commercial land “capable of supporting enhanced drive-through capability for quick serve restaurants or a state-of-the-art convenience store with fueling stations,” as well as other potential opportunities.

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