Red Mesa opening resto near Rays stadium; doesn’t this say something about future of baseball in St. Pete?

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The Tampa Bay Times‘ Laura Reiley reports that the Veytia family is taking over the Davidson Fine Art space at 1100 First Ave. N and transforming it into Red Mesa Mercado by the end of the year. As Reiley notes, this location is in the heart of the EDGE district.

Why is Veytia opening a new resto in the EDGE District? Peter Veytia told Reiley, “it’s the most exciting area in town at the moment.”

Know what’s two blocks south of where Red Mesa Mercado will be built?

That’s right, Tropicana Field — home to the Tampa Bay Rays. In other words, according to one of the leading, most successful restaurateurs in the area, the Rays’ stadium is in the heart of the “most exciting area in town…” 

Tere are some 850 high-end apartments and condominiums under construction within walking distance of Tropicana Field. There are another 1,000 units in the pipeline. That means another three or four thousand residents will soon call that part of town home.

Yet, egged on by a newspaper which holds “regionalism” as a paramount virtue, the Tampa Bay Rays wish to leave this “most exciting area in town” for Tampa’s abandoned Channelside district. 

Perhaps the Rays should think about what their current location will look like in eight to ten years. Maybe they’ll realize they’ve been in the right spot all along.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.