Ocala Aquatics Center Groundbreaking

By | Community, Construction | No Comments

The Circle Square Foundation celebrated the groundbreaking for their new aquatic center, Florida Aquatics Swimming and Training (FAST), on October 27th in Ocala, FL.

Designed and detailed by WJA, the facility will provide a variety of swimming and fitness programs for both recreation and competition use. Also, in attendance was Olympic Swim Coach, Gregg Troy, who addressed the attendees stating, “I really believe FAST will be one of the five best swimming facilities in the country.”

The facility will feature a 10-lane 50-meter competition pool, an outdoor 8-lane 50-meter pool, and a splash pad. FAST is expected to open in late 2021.

Read more about the groundbreaking ceremony on SwimSwam.

Ina A Colen Academy Breaks Ground

By | Construction, Education | No Comments

On October 23rd, The Colen Family Charitable Trust celebrated the groundbreaking of their new $24 million dollar educational facility, Ina A. Colen Academy.

This is a multi-phase, public charter school designed by WJA in partnership with The Colen Family Charitable Trust. The tuition-free school aims to “cultivate passionate learners with sharp minds and kind hearts,” and places an emphasis on collaboration and empathy for others. This emphasis is inherent in the architecture, with individual learning studios that open onto a variety of communal learning common areas, encouraging students to breakout and work as teams in all areas of their education. IACA is scheduled to open August of 2022.

PR Newswire Article


Plant City Fire Station #3 Ribbon Cutting

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Project Manager, Jeff McDowell, attended the ribbon cutting for Fire Station #3 in Plant City, FL. WJA began design on this $3 million project in 2016.

The station is a 8,400 sf fire station that shares site with the existing tourist information center building. The three-bay station is equipped with seven private dorms with individual bathrooms for privacy, making it easier to accommodate mixed-gender crews. The building features exposed brick that works structurally as well as aesthetically. The building also features polished concrete floors, solid-surface countertops, limited paint and conduits on the roof to add solar panels, which will increase the building’s efficiency. The new station also includes a display bay out front for the City’s 1927 American LaFrance fire engine.

WJA’s New Office Headquarters

By | Construction, Design-Build | No Comments

Our new headquarters, expected to open at the start of the New Year, will be the first new office building constructed in Downtown St. Pete in 15 years! Located on Mirror Lake, the new mixed-use building will include two floors of rentable space ideal for medical, dental, law, tech, or other professional firms, a floor dedicated to the WJA/WJC HQ, and residential condominiums on the top three floors.

To see final photos and learn more about this project

I Love the Burg News Article

St. Pete Rising Article



Progress on the Wesley Chapel District Park Project

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Progress photos from the new Wesley Chapel District Park Recreation Center located in Pasco County. This project, designed by WJA and currently being built by Keator Construction, LLC. is part of a multi-phase project. The 17,800 sf facility contains a full-court gym, office, two multi-purpose community spaces, and an outdoor hockey rink sponsored by our Stanley Cup Champions, the Tampa Bay Lightning.



Morningside Recreation Complex Opens

By | Construction, Uncategorized | No Comments

Earlier this month the City of Clearwater opened the doors to the newly completed Morningside Recreation Center Designed by WJA. The new 20,998 sf facility houses an athletic gymnasium, fitness center, locker rooms, offices and a large dividable multi-purpose room. The new recreation center was built adjacent to the existing community pool and shares locker rooms and offices for administrative staff.

To learn more about the programs offered and operations hours for Morningside Recreation Center visit the City of Clearwater’s website.

New era for St. Petersburg College

By | Community, Construction, Education | No Comments

The storied and growing St. Petersburg College has selected a team of LEMA ConstructionPerkins + Will, and Wannemacher Jensen Architects (WJA) to design and build a new $25-million flagship building at their St. Petersburg/Gibbs Campus, to be known as the “Student Success Center.”

“We appreciate the student-centric, forward-focused approach of St. Petersburg College,” said WJA’s Jason Jensen. “We’re thrilled to contribute toward such a progressive education vision.”

Completion is planned for fall 2018. Information at:

Information about St. Petersburg College at:


Pier Upland Project

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The St. Petersburg Pier District will create new experiences between St. Pete’s vibrant downtown and its expansive waterfront park system, the St. Pete Pier, and Tampa Bay

Wannemacher Jensen and partner New York-based W Architecture & Landscape Architecture are in the process of developing designs for the St. Petersburg Pier “Approach” (also known as the Uplands project, or the Pier District).

The Pier Approach connects the downtown core to the new St. Petersburg Pier with an active and seamless art-lined pedestrian promenade, offering flexible event space, waterfront dining, market venues and more. A proposed shaded pedestrian promenade will provide both access to the pier and a venue for pop-up tents.

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The St. Petersburg waterfront park system is the third largest in North America, encompassing 34 acres of city waterfront. The project will repurpose Beach Drive from the Vinoy Hotel to Pioneer Park, with walkable streets and an Anchor art piece centered in a Grand Pier Approach entry.

The approach will include a wide array of circulation options including the downtown looper trolley, the beach trolley, the ferry, and wide/consistent waterfront pathways. Construction is planned to start September 2017 with completion in September 2018.

Learn More:
New St. Pete Pier Updates
Pier Approach Presentation
Bay News 9 Coverage
Pier Approval


The James Museum coming soon

By | Community, Construction, Education | No Comments

Culminating from years of planning, Tom James (Executive Chairman of one of St. Petersburg’s largest and well known publicly traded companies) announced plans about the anticipated $55-million Tom & Mary James Museum of Western & Wildlife Art  – opening in 2017.

Wannemacher Jensen is proud to collaborate with Yann Weymouth and Harvard Jolly on this important and generous cultural contribution from Mr. and Mrs. James, to St. Pete’s residents and visitors for generations.

More than five hundred pieces of artwork are coming from the Tom & Mary James/Raymond James Art Collection. The James Museum will encompass the first two floors of downtown St. Pete’s 100 Central Avenue building, covering more than 133,000 square feet of museum space alongside mixed-use, public and retail space – a theater, a cafe, and community event space.


Mr. James has long supported the prominent and ever-evolving St. Pete arts scene in many ways, including serving as president for the Dali Museum Board of Trustees.

The James is one in a game-changing series of downtown Saint Petersburg renovations and developments in the works, such as the “One” complex across the street, the Central Avenue 400 block, the American Arts and Crafts Movement Museum on the other side of downtown, and the Pier District.

Much more:

James Museum website

Tampa Bay Times

Tampa Bay Business Journal

83 Degrees



St. Pete Free Clinic expands capacity, capabilities

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St. Petersburg Free Clinic’s new Virginia and David Baldwin Women’s Residence is now open in downtown St. Petersburg. The new building has substantially increased the Free Clinic’s capacity, now allowing the nonprofit to assist nearly 150 women transition to self-sufficiency each year.

The Women’s Residence provides a safe place for women to live while they develop skills necessary for independent living. Designed by WJA, the new Women’s Residence includes a large commercial kitchen with teaching areas to share healthy cooking techniques, an open dining area to foster a sense of community, and training rooms to help with job-seeking and other life skills.

Open since 1989, the St. Pete Free Clinic receives about 1,800 inquires annually.

Read more about the new facility at SaintPetersBlog and TampaBayNewswire.



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