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Located at the northern end of Tampa Bay and the eastern edge of Florida's Pinellas County, Oldsmar offers a small-town feel that makes it unique among many of the state's communities. The city may be relatively small, but it's home to several parks, a thriving downtown district and growing commercial developments.
The History of Oldsmar
In 1913, the area where Oldsmar now sits had only a handful of settlers. Ransom Eli Olds purchased over 37,500 acres of land and decided that he wanted to undertake the building of a town. The town he built was created specifically for the working class, in contrast to the expensive communites designed for the wealthy, who were settling the areas of Tampa and St. Petersburg.
Thanks to its strategic location between St. Petersburg and Tampa, Oldsmar was an excellent area to develop. Olds made great efforts to advertise the city to a national audience, touting it as the place to live for "health, wealth and happiness." He was fairly successful in drawing a number of people to the area, and a flourishing agricultural economy was established on crops such as peppers, tomatoes, corn and grapes. Dairy and pig farms were also popular in Oldsmar, and fishing and crabbing were a common way for locals to make a living.
By 1923, Olds realized that despite the millions of dollars he had invested in the city, it hadn't grown as quickly as he hoped. Although the town was home to a fairly healthy economy, only a few hundred people called it home. Olds had dreamed of tens of thousands of Oldsmar residents, so he decided to cut his losses and sell the land. Despite that, the city continued to grow, with a population that has experienced several sharp increases in the past several decades.
Living in Oldsmar
Oldsmar is becoming increasingly popular for its low cost of living, low crime rate and cozy, small-town feel. Community bonds are strengthened by a number of local events, ranging from annual town celebrations to regular weekend gatherings.
Every year, Oldsmar celebrates its heritage with Oldsmar Days and Nights, an extended event that features a variety of parades, carnival rides and car shows. Other local events include health education seminars, local photography and art contests, and the annual Mayor's Breakfast. The downtown area has been redeveloped with a focus on reconnecting to the spirit of "Old Florida," incorporating historic elements that are a nod to the state's past.
From Oldsmar you can easily access several different beaches and the scenic Honeymoon Island. The community is close enough to larger cities that you can make a short drive to access larger attractions like Busch Gardens, Lowry Park Zoo and the Clearwater Marin Aquarium.
The Pinellas County School District serves the public schools in Oldsmar. In addition to traditional campuses, the school district offers adult general education. Oldsmar is also home to a number of private schools and specialty education options.
Resources for Moving to Oldsmar
Here's some helpful information to help you prepare for your move to Oldsmar:
- Utilities: Tampa Electric (TECO) is the town's primary energy provider. The city manages water and sewer services.
- Garbage and Recycling: You can expect regular curbside collection in most residential areas of Oldsmar.
- Transportation: There are several public transportation options in and around Oldsmar, including the Clearwater Jolley Trolley and Hillsborough Area Regional Transit (HART).
Home prices in Oldsmar are rising quickly, and you may be surprised to learn that the average price is slightly higher than the Tampa metro average. As Oldsmar gains attention as a desirable place to live, the housing market is becoming increasingly competitive.