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Push continues to build 72-story skyscraper in Tampa | News

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Push continues to build 72-story skyscraper in Tampa

Tampa, Florida -- It's big and it's bold.

It's called ICON -- a soaring, 72-story steel and glass skyscraper, the brain child of Argentinian architect Juan Carlos Ricardes.

"It will be iconic and show that Tampa is a big player. Just to demonstrate that we are not a small town, that we're in the big leagues now," said Ricardes.

Ricardes said it all started about a year ago as a simple conversation. A group of visionaries wanted to see one of the biggest skyscrapers in the nation built in downtown Tampa. Marketing executive Travis Horn saw dollar signs and jumped on board.

"Think of the jobs, think of the potential economic impact of a structure like this. It could be incredible for Tampa's economy," said Horn.

Ricardes turned his conceptual drawing into a 3-D animation. Then, he debuted it on YouTube, Facebook, and Twitter. The idea was so incredible, a grassroots movement to build it exploded.

"Well, people are very excited. The comments are very good. They're wondering what's going on. A bunch of people are signing up for the Facebook page. It's very exciting," said Ricardes.

The concept is simple -- a place where people live, work, and play. Twenty-four floors each of office, hotel, and residential space. A city within a city, 72 stories high.

And it's been done before. Legacy Tower and Millennium Park in Chicago sprang out of grassroots efforts too.

Horn said, despite the naysayers, it can be done in Tampa.

"Again, if you can dream it, you can do it. If the only thing that separates us from doing a project like this is money, then let's get it in front of the people with the money," said Horn.

"It's an iconic building that makes a statement," said Ricardes. "It sends the message that Tampa is bigger than ever."


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