Multimillion-dollar Imagine Clearwater waterfront project stays on schedule despite supply chain woes

May 10, 2022

Breanne Williams

Imagine Clearwater is nearing a milestone in its redevelopment of Coachman Park.

Jonathan Moore, president of InVision Advisors, the owner’s representative company that oversees the project, said the amphitheater will soon be “growing” as columns begin to go up for the massive project. The large “wave roof structure” will take two to three weeks to be built once the pieces are delivered. The steel beams are fabricated in Mexico and will be transported piece by piece to Clearwater.

The roof is “almost an acre,” according to Moore and will have solar panels on certain sections. Its total height, due to the sloping landscape down to the waterfront, will come up to around the base of the library. That slope up toward the back of the library will act as the lawn space for the amphitheater.

Moore said they are between 30% and 40% complete with the total project and are “on track and on budget” for the summer 2023 opening date. Though the project has had its fair share of hurdles with supply chain issues — Moore said his team is overseeing 50 projects currently, and every single one of them has struggled to obtain supplies — the team has been able to hit each milestone marker without too much trouble.

“We are asking our architects and engineers on different projects to issue early design packets, which they don’t normally like to commit to this early on in the process,” Moore said. “But we must get these orders in earlier than we used to so we can make sure everything gets here in time. Electrical and steel are seeing the biggest delays right now, but it’s changing every few months.”

Other hurdles have also popped up along the way, like the changing flood zones, which led to the team building a $1 million underground seawall to ensure in the case of a “100-year storm,” the foundations of the amphitheater would be protected. According to Moore, the team also had approximately three instances during early excavation when the crew discovered an underground structure that hadn’t been in city records; they then had to research and remove it.

Though this is a massive undertaking — Imagine Clearwater has an $84 million price tag for the redevelopment of the downtown waterfront — Daniel Valin, project manager for the site, said they’ve received predominately positive feedback from the residents. Each morning at 6:45 a.m., the construction crew stretches before they head into work, and Valin said some of the residents of the Water’s Edge Condominiums next door join them on their balconies for the morning routine.

“I believe this is going to be such a great thing for downtown living,” Moore said. “It may be hard to see the forest for the trees right now with construction starting at 7:30 (a.m.) each day and so much going on, but I think people realize this project is truly going to be an unbelievable amenity for this community.”