Tampa Bay Real Estate
The city of Tampa hosts a local population in excess of 340,000 people and has been consistently expanding since its settlement in 1823 and incorporation in 1849. Scenically situated along Florida’s western coast with the Gulf of Mexico, Tampa has become the 53rd-largest city in the United States and is part of the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater Metropolitan Area. The communities that surround the core of Tampa are usually referred to as the “Tampa Bay” area. In 2008, Tampa was ranked as the eighth-cleanest city in the United States by Yahoo! And the fifth-best outdoor city by Forbes Magazine.
Several Fortune 100 companies are headquartered in Tampa, including OSI Restaurant Partners, the parent of Outback Steakhouse, Bonefish Grill, and Carrabba’s Italian Grill, WellCare Health Plans, Inc., TECO, Walter Industries, and Raymond James Financial. Several other companies have corporate offices, headquarters, factories, warehouses, and other operations in the Tampa area. This thriving local economy has made working a joy for the majority of Tampa’s residents.
The city’s name is translated into English as “sticks of fire” from the Native American Calusa tribe that once inhabited the area. Most historians believe this is related to lightning that sometimes appears in the South Floridian region. The heart of Tampa is bordered by both the Old Tampa Bay and the Hillsborough Bay that together form the more well-known Tampa Bay that flows into the Gulf of Mexico. The Hillsborough River flows to the similarly-named bay and is one of Tampa’s primary sources of fresh water.
Education has become one of the cornerstones of life in Tampa. The University of South Florida, University of Tampa, Florida Metropolitan University, Hillsborough Community College, Southwest Florida College, Stetson University College of Law, Strayer University, The Art Institute, South University, International Academy of Design and Technoilogy, and Remington College all have campuses in the general area in and surrounding Tampa proper. A highly competitive and top-notch Hillsborough County Public School District provides quality K-12 educations to Tampa’s school-aged youth.
Tampa is also home to four major professional sports leagues. While Major League Baseball’s Tampa Bay Rays play in nearby St. Petersburg, the National Football League’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers, National Hockey League’s Tampa Bay Lightning, and Arena Football League’s Tampa Bay Storm are all based in Tampa itself. These teams have grown large and loyal fan bases that have driven Tampa to become of the most sports-crazy cities in the nation. On game days, it is not uncommon to see neighborhood blocks hosting large parties and other related events.