19th Street Casitas and Cafe

1901-1911 N. 19th Street, Tampa, FL 33605

OWNER: The Cuban Club Foundation

BUILT: 1900 – 1920s; Bunker Building 1926

SIZE: Approx. 1300 SF each


With the widening of Interstate 4, several historic homes faced demolition to make way for the expansion. Cooperation between several government agencies resulted in the creation of the Cultural Resources Committee, the first such organization of its kind, to relocate and, thus, save from destruction a number of historic homes impacted by the interstate project. In all, 39 Casitas were saved from destruction.

Once the houses had been saved, The Ybor City Museum Society actively lobbied the CRC to incorporate some of the casitas into the Ybor City Museum State Park complex. The efforts were successful. The Department of Transportation relocated and renovated the historic casitas, donating them to the Museum Society for use as retail space. Groundbreaking for the project took place in October of 2002. Together with the original “Two Friends Café” or “Bunker” building, 19th Street has evolved into a classic streetscape right out of Ybor City’s past that incorporates not only these casitas, but also the historic buildings associated with the adjacent state park, including the Ferlita Bakery building and several circa 1890s casitas.

The four casitas were originally located at 1211 and 1215 East 13th Avenue and 2307 and 2309 East 12th Street. Two are representative of the National Folk (c. 1850-1910) style, while two are representative of the Craftsman (c. 1905-1930) style.