Historic building torn down; Rosemary District expecting development

The oft-forgotten historic area north of Downtown Sarasota – the Rosemary District – is the site for new development. The proposed Rosemary Square has been on the city’s mind for almost 15 years, but the recent demolition of the historic building at the site of the square implies that the plan is in action.

The site of the center of this development is the southeast corner of the intersection of Central Ave. and Blvd. of the Arts. The building, formerly the home of Sarasota Boxing Club, is also located next to the historical marker for the first black community in the area. Lewis Colson, a former slave, settled in Sarasota in 1884 and helped to develop a thriving community in the Rosemary District by the 1920s.

Today, the Rosemary District is primarily known as the battleground for Sarasota’s homelessness problem. With a number of homeless people on the streets here, neighborhood businesses and restaurants have reported taking a hit.

The new Rosemary Square is intended to revive the Rosemary District and will include restaurants, shops, apartments and a boutique movie theatre.

Information for this article was taken from sarasotahistoryalive.com, mysuncoast.com, scgov.net.


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