Article tools: Share:

Tampa Tours: Exploring the City and Tilt-Up Innovations

Español | Translation Sponsored by TCA

The 2023 Tilt-Up Convention and Expo in Tampa provided attendees with the exciting opportunity to venture beyond the convention center by selecting one of three captivating tours. These tours offered a unique blend of city exploration and tilt-up innovation, allowing participants to discover both the vibrant metropolis of Tampa and the latest developments in the world of tilt-up construction. This recap will highlight the diverse experiences and insights gained by attendees during their selected journeys.

Hillsborough County Public Schools – UUU High School

Amidst Tampa Bay’s rapid population growth, Hillsborough County Public Schools embarked on an ambitious project: the construction of a new high school temporarily named high school “UUU.” Anticipated to be completed in August 2025, this educational facility will stand as the county’s largest high school, boasting a capacity for 3,428 students spread across 13 buildings and encompassing an impressive 359,000 square feet on 87 acres of land. In collaboration with Beck/Envision as the construction manager, Harvard Jolly | PBK as the architect, and Master Consulting Engineers as the structural engineer, VMG Construction Inc. proudly extended an invitation for attendees of the 2023 Tilt-Up Convention and Expo to tour “UUU” high school. The tour promised an immersive journey through the various stages of the tilt-up construction process, highlighting foundations, casting beds, formed panels, fully poured panels, and even the possibility of witnessing a live, panel erection.

While hurricane Idalia presented challenges and caused a slight delay on the jobsite, the dedicated team at VMG Construction Inc. ensured that attendees received comprehensive insights. They orchestrated an impressive presentation and crafted special mock-up panels, providing a tangible showcase of specific project features during the tour.

In addition to exploring the ongoing construction, attendees were treated to a glimpse of the future as they observed a completed sister school located nearby. Because students were actively engaged in their studies a full tour of the completed building wasn’t possible, but attendees had the valuable opportunity to witness, in action, what they had seen in development at the jobsite. This unique perspective provided a comprehensive view of the innovative tilt-up construction techniques employed in these educational facilities, enhancing their understanding of the entire construction process. Despite the challenges presented by nature, this tour offered a holistic view of high school “UUU” and its completed counterpart, exemplifying the advancements and future prospects of tilt-up construction in Tampa Bay.

Port Tampa Bay and Titan America’s Impact

The journey commenced as attendees stepped aboard the Starship II, Florida’s largest 150-passenger dining yacht, for a private tour of Port Tampa Bay, setting the stage for an extraordinary exploration. Port Tampa Bay, renowned for its status as Florida’s largest and most influential port, plays a pivotal role in supporting nearly 85,000 jobs and generating an impressive annual economic impact exceeding $17 billion. Serving as a multifaceted hub, the port handles a wide range of cargoes, including bulk, break bulk, containers, and roll-on/roll-off shipments, while also serving as a major center for shipbuilding and repair activities.

As attendees savored the comfort and elegance of the Starship II, they were treated to a narrated exploration of Port Tampa Bay’s extensive operations and significant contributions. This immersive journey provided attendees with a unique connection to Titan America, a key player in the construction industry. Tony Szynaka, representing Titan America, passionately discussed the company’s operations and contributions to the region’s infrastructure landscape.

While the primary focus of the tour was on the port’s vibrant activities and Titan America’s remarkable contributions, attendees also enjoyed a delightful on-board experience, adding to the overall enjoyment of the journey. This tour offered attendees a holistic understanding of the vital role that both Port Tampa Bay and Titan America play in shaping the economic and infrastructural landscape of Florida.

The Motor Enclave – A Motorsport Enthusiast’s Dream

The Motor Enclave, a multifaceted marvel, offered attendees a unique and thrilling experience that transcended the boundaries of a traditional tour. Developed by Brad Oleshansky, this extraordinary venue combined a storage facility, a sports car test track, an off-road course, and versatile spaces for hospitality, events, and offices. Described as “Topgolf, but for motorsports,” the Motor Enclave’s grandeur could be more aptly compared to a captivating theme park for auto enthusiasts, akin to Disney World.

During this exceptional tour, attendees not only enjoyed a delectable lunch but also had the privilege of hearing from the project team, including Noah Schnell from Carr & Sons Masonry Inc., the concrete contractor responsible for bringing this vision to life. As they explored this impressive facility, attendees were immersed in the world of high-performance automotive excellence.

For those with a need for speed and an appetite for adrenaline, the tour offered an exhilarating opportunity: thrilling rides in cars driven by professional drivers, giving attendees the chance to experience fast-paced laps around the facility’s 1.6-mile performance track and providing an unforgettable rush of excitement.

The Motor Enclave’s track, designed by the renowned Formula 1 track designer Hermann Tilke, added another layer of prestige to this exceptional venue. Having crafted 22 Formula 1 tracks worldwide—in iconic locations like Abu Dhabi, Silverstone in England, and COTA in Texas—Tilke’s masterful touch also graced the Motor Enclave for our attendees in Tampa, Florida. This tour was a testament to the passion, innovation, and exhilaration embodied by the Motor Enclave, making it a must-visit destination for motorsport enthusiasts and thrill-seekers alike during the 2023 Tilt-Up Convention and Expo.

The 2023 Tilt-Up Convention and Expo saw an overwhelming response to its tours, with all spots sold out—a testament to the attendees’ remarkable engagement. Heartfelt thanks are extended to tour organizers Noah Schnell from Carr & Sons and Terry Baird from Leviat for their meticulous planning and seamless execution that made the tours unforgettable. Their dedication and commitment, as well as that from the tour hosts, added a special dimension to this year’s event. As we look to future conventions, the spirit of innovation and collaboration fostered in Tampa, Florida, will propel the tilt-up industry toward new horizons.

Leave A Comment

Get Connected

Like us on Facebook
Follow us on Twitter
Connect with us on LinkedIn
Subscribe to us on YouTube


About us

TILT-UP TODAY, a publication of the Tilt-Up Concrete Association, is THE source for Tilt-Up industry news, market intelligence, business strategies, technical solutions, product information, and other resources for professionals in the Tilt-Up industry. A subscription to TILT-UP TODAY is included in a TCA membership. Subscriptions for potential TCA members are also available. If you would like to receive a complimentary subscription to the publication, please contact the TCA.