Ballast Point Neighborhood in South Tampa: Historic, Quiet, Scenic and on the Move
Just north of MacDill Air Force Base, on the west side of Hillsborough Bay, sits the neighborhood of Ballast Point. From the Ballast Point park there’s a wonderful view of Tampa’s downtown skyline. I often go to the park at dusk and watch the sunset reflecting off the buildings. There’s always a nice breeze, and it’s never very crowded.
As Rick Martinez, founder of Sweetwater Organic Community Farm, put it in a recent Creative Loafing article, there’s no better place to enjoy your surroundings than at the Ballast Point Pier: “Take a bag of popcorn,” he advises. “Walk out on the pier and enjoy the waterfront.”
Here are some of the reasons Ballast Point is sometimes called “South Tampa’s hidden treasure”:
- Proximity to downtown Tampa, Ybor City and Channelside-10 min away
- Near MacDill Air Force Base
- Still Affordable, less than renting
- Mature trees, most notably live oaks
- Two city parks, one of them on the waterfront
- Street configuration that is resident-friendly and discourages traffic
The parks are spectacular, with Ballast Point Park (aka Jules Verne Park) offering not only a pier, boat ramp and waterfront view but also public facilities that include a community/fitness center. The Taste of Boston restaurant is situated on the waterfront as well.
Why Live in Ballast Point?
Reason #1: It’s Family Friendly
Ballast Point is an established residential neighborhood with an enduring history. The Tampa Tribune covered a recent milestone event: Ballast Point Elementary School celebrated its 90th anniversary in March, where Principal Debbie Fitzpatrick said, “Our theme is 90 years of excellence, and I believe Ballast Point is a place where history repeats itself.” Many families are moving to this area for the Elementary school. Ballast Point Elementary received the Grade “A” – Florida School Recognition Award. You can get more information about the school here.
Reason #2: The Times Are a’Changing
At the same time, Ballast Point is an area where new things are starting to happen. The Tampa Bay Business Journal reported in March that a 48-unit apartment complex is planned at the intersection of Paxton and MacDill avenues in the Ballast Point area. Casey Ellison, founder of EWI Construction, said the “neighborhood is changing very fast, and services are starting to come in.” The small-scale development will be targeted to young professionals, but the high cost of renting may encourage more people to purchase a home.
Reason #3: Your Home Will Hold $$$ Value
Property values in Ballast Point have increased almost 6 percent over the past year, so the neighborhood continues to be a prized and perhaps overlooked Tampa-area locale. New construction is prevalent, including new homes under construction on Helen– a sign that property values aren’t going anywhere but up!
Ballast point has homes in all price ranges, but is also situated near million-dollar homes and, of course, the famous Bayshore Boulevard with its 4.5-mile waterfront sidewalk.
If you’re in the market to buy a home and you value a sense of place, an unbroken chain of history and a neighborhood feel, Ballast Point might be the right place for you! Give me a call, and we’ll go explore.
Rae Catanese, Realtor +1 (813) 784-7744