First Watch Restaurants announced plans today to expand its corporate infrastructure in Manatee County by building a new 39,000-square-foot headquarters in the University Town Center area. The new facility, designed to accommodate the company’s continued aggressive growth plans, will be located behind its current headquarters just north of Cooper Creek Boulevard. It's planned to open in late 2020. The expansion of the company’s headquarters is projected to create a minimum of 85 new jobs, with an expected average salary of nearly $82,000—more than 200 percent of the average Manatee County annual wage. On June 18, the Manatee County Board of County Commissioners approved a performance-based economic development incentive package for the project, which includes up to $255,000 for job creation during the next five years and a multimodal transportation impact fee incentive estimated to be $135,240.
The new two-story building will be developed by Benderson Development, and will overlook southbound I-75, north of the University Parkway exit. It will feature collaborative work spaces in addition to private offices and conference rooms, a workout center with locker rooms, a test kitchen for the award-winning café’s culinary team, classroom facilities for the company’s management academy, indoor and outdoor dining and leisure spaces and more.