Tuesday, Sep 02, 2014
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Refurbished strip mall coming to life on U.S. 19

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— A small refurbished portion of U.S. 19 in Tarpon Springs is beginning to come back to life.

The large billboard overlooking the site helps drive that point home a little more.

Jimmy John’s Gourmet Sandwiches, a national chain headquartered in Illinois, became the latest tenant to open up shop in the revitalized, 15,345-square-foot shopping center on the east side of heavily trafficked U.S. 19. The billboard, which stands in the center’s parking lot, proclaims that loud and clear.

Jimmy John’s now joins Allstate, AT&T and U.S. Gold and Silver as retailers operating at the site.

Along with attracting new businesses to the area, the shopping center’s recent physical repairs and vibrant paint job gives Tarpon Springs’ main entrance an aesthetic boost, as well.

Local businessman George Levey owns the strip, as well as the similarly refurbished building directly behind it, and has been redeveloping both over the past year. Levey has reportedly pumped more than $1 million into a site that boasts a 75,000-car-per-day traffic count.

The second building is 12,000 square feet and has 30-foot ceilings. Last summer the property’s real estate broker, Steven Silverman of Tampa Commercial Real Estate, said the warehouse-style building could be a potential home for an athletics-based operation.

This bit of revitalization isn’t the only one in the works along Tarpon Springs’ stretch of U.S. 19, either.

A short drive south will lead drivers by a site that’s currently filled with rubble and debris — which is actually an upgrade. Demolition crews have razed the old Days Inn Motel and IHOP Restaurant on the west side of the highway in preparation for a Reload Gun Range.

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