Harbour Island is convenient to Downtown Tampa, Channel District, Tampa General Hospital, MacDill Air Force Base, and is also located in the Plant High School District. Making it a popular location in South Tampa.
It was originally known as Seddon Island. Named after W. L. Seddon, chief engineer for the Seaboard Air Line railroad. In 1906, Seddon’s plans were adopted and soon his company dredged a channel and established a port facility on Grassy Island. The 177 acre island was later purchased from the Seaboard Coast Line in 1979 for residential, office and retail development purposes. The first phase of development did not begin until 1985. Between 1985 and January 1999, the island was linked to Downtown Tampa by the Harbour Island People Mover, an automated tram shuttle system that ran on an elevated concrete trackway connecting the Harbor Island shopping center to the Franklin Street parking garage a mile and a half away.
Today, the island consists of mostly exclusive residential areas, with high-end hotels, and some retail and restaurants at the northernmost strip. Because Harbour Island is a planned community and a man made island, elevation levels are higher than many parts of South Tampa. Retention ponds make flooding less likely on the island. Two high-rise towers are in the process of being developed on the island. The are slated for completion in 2017.