I stumbled upon this abandoned building while out driving on Rocky Point. I was intrigued as I saw the formal and imposing archways and classy-looking logo amidst decay and a trash-strewn driveway. Rocky Point is an island of offices, restaurants, hotels, apartments and condominiums located less than a mile out into Tampa Bay via the Courtney Campbell Causeway. (It is not a place I would want to be when the hurricane enters the bay from the Gulf of Mexico.) There has been a lot of investment and development over the years that has seen tremendoust success. Its a beautiful place to work and live and many large corporations have Rocky Point addresses. It's also a delightful place to dine and enjoy the water view.
But at least one project, the Blue Meridian, never got past the opening of its preview sales center. Conceived as a 14-story, "luxury resort," residential community, it was to sit on 3 acres of Rocky Point, a "paradise" of island living with 108 residences ranging in size from 1,500 to 4,300 square feet. Its marketing copy claimed it would be where "city life is balanced by the relaxed elegance of island living." Cost per unit would go from $600,000 up to $3 million. Whether this project ever gets built I haven't a clue. But, stuck smack in the middle of a new waterfront Hampton Inn Rocky Point and the new Westin Tampa Bay, are the remains of sales center for the Meridian, once an elegant and luxurious preview of fine living. Why it now stands empty, practically crumbling and overgrown, is a good question. And it is a substantial structure that I'm certain was designed to impart the kind of "paradise" the developers were trying to sell. Today, the only thing that remains of the project is BLUE. As in depressing and ugly. Vines are overtaking the building, weeds have grown up through the parking lot and drive, and the once lush plants are trying to survive on drops of rain water, even as the huge terra cotta pots crack and topple over. It is all terribly sad and blue.