Make us your home page

Oldsmar plaza redevelopment will bring Aldi, Ross stores

Construction is under way at Forest Lakes Plaza. “Now that we’re here we have realized how busy Oldsmar is,” says new tenant Kristen Mortara of Four Monkeys Candy Connection.


Construction is under way at Forest Lakes Plaza. “Now that we’re here we have realized how busy Oldsmar is,” says new tenant Kristen Mortara of Four Monkeys Candy Connection.

OLDSMAR — Corey Newman frequently walks from her apartment to the Walmart on Tampa Road, pushing her toddler, Sky, in a stroller. On a recent Friday, she checked out the construction going on at Forest Lakes Plaza.

"I think my life will change drastically once the new shopping center is done,'' said Newman, 38.

This fall an Aldi grocery store and a Ross Dress for Less are expected to open as the new anchor tenants at the center, located on the northwest corner of Tampa Road and Forest Lakes Boulevard. It has been more than eight years since the last anchor, Winn Dixie, closed its doors.

"When the Aldi opens, that'll be really huge for me because I won't have to cross (Forest Lakes Boulevard) to get to Walmart anymore,'' Newman said.

Contractor Malcomson Construction Co. is working on the exterior renovations. There are five businesses operating at the plaza now, with about a dozen more storefronts still available for rent.

Despite the lag, developer Jim Dunphy of Dunphy Properties said momentum is increasing.

"I think as the project progresses, interest will continue to increase. This site is excellent. It has great visibility and great access,'' he said.

The newest tenant is Kristen and Tim Mortara's Four Monkeys Candy Connection. Along with the Mortaras, the unidentified owner of an independent pharmacy also recently signed a lease for a 1,000-square-foot store, according to Lisa McCaffrey of Colliers International, the firm responsible for renting out the plaza.

The Mortaras, of Palm Harbor, decided to relocate their shop from Clearwater Beach after reading about the redevelopment last year.

"Honestly, a big reason we moved here was because the rent is lower in Oldsmar than it is on the beach,'' she said. "Now that we're here we have realized how busy Oldsmar is. The city has been very welcoming to us too, and even the construction group has helped by making a big sign so everyone can see us during construction.''

At Munchies, a pet nutrition center that opened about 12 years ago, manager Donna Klenovich also touted the efforts of the construction crew.

"Construction of course is a pain, but it's actually been good for us. It's drawing attention here,'' she said. "The construction foreman made a big sign for us, and people come in saying they didn't even know we were here.''

Newman hopes "a kid-friendly restaurant'' will move to the plaza.

"Like Chuck E. Cheese,'' she said. "Let's do it.''

Piper Castillo can be reached at or (727) 445-4163. To write a letter to the editor, visit

Oldsmar plaza redevelopment will bring Aldi, Ross stores 03/11/14 [Last modified: Tuesday, March 11, 2014 5:24pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Tampa man pleads guilty to forging check for fake investment

    Personal Finance

    A Tampa resident was convicted Thursday for forging a check for a fake investment. The Florida Office of Financial Regulation said that Eric Franz Peer pleaded guilty. He served 11 months in jail and will have to pay $18,000.

  2. Minority business accelerator launch by Tampa chamber to aid black, Hispanic businesses


    A "minority business accelerator" program was launched Thursday by the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce geared toward helping black and Hispanic business owners identify and overcome barriers to grow their companies. The accelerator, known as MBA, will provide participants with business tools to cultivate opportunities …

    Bemetra Simmons is a senior private banker at Wells Fargo, The Private Bank. She is also chair of the new minority business accelerator program for the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce. [Photo, LinkedIn]
  3. Terrier Tri brings unique triathlon training to South Tampa


    Over a decade ago, Robert Pennino traded late nights in the music studio for early mornings in the Terrier Tri cycle studio.

    Terrier Tri, a cycling studio in South Tampa celebrates a grand opening on June 27. Photo courtesy of Tess Hipp.
  4. New bistro hopes to serve as 'adult Chuck E. Cheese'


    YBOR CITY — Inside Cheezy's Bistro and Speakeasy, a new restaurant opening in Ybor City, customers will find a mix of family recipes, games and secrecy.

    Cheezy's Bistro and Speakeasy readies to open in Ybor City. Photo courtesy of Cheezy's Bistro and Speakeasy.
  5. Ramadan having an economic impact on local charities, businesses

    Economic Development

    TAMPA — Dodging the rain, a few families and customers gathered inside Petra Restaurant on Busch Boulevard. Around 8:30 p.m., the adham (or call to prayer) music begins, signaling Iftar, the end of the daily fast. Customers grabbed a plate to dig into the feast.

    Baha Abdullah, 35, the owner of the Sultan Market makes kataif, a common dessert that is eaten during the month long celebration of Ramadan in Tampa. [OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times]