PANAMA CITY, Fla. (WMBB) — Before long, construction crews will be breaking ground on the new centerpiece of SweetBay’s town center. 

“We are starting construction of the Publix and the town center in October of this year, and we’ll be completing it in the first quarter of 2025,” Director of Development for St. Andrew’s Land Company Will Randle said.

SweetBay is a planned community that has grown up quickly out of the old airport property located just north of Highway 390 and Baldwin Road.

With 3,200 homes and apartment units planned, all those residents will need convenient shopping options. 

“This is a real service for the community to be able to reach this Publix,” Randle said. “So this is a real service for the community to be able to reach this Publix. So without accessing city streets necessarily.”

SweetBay residents said they can’t wait for the store to open.

“It will be convenient for us, for everyone living here after work, if they need anything, they can just run right over to Publix,” SweetBay resident Kathy Donnelly said.

Randle said the new 4,800-square-foot location will have the same floor plan as the store that recently opened on 30A in South Walton but the exterior will be unique.

“They do have a facade that has a balcony with an interior area associated with it,” Randle said. “That is not we actually have designed a custom facade just for SweetBay that’s unique to SweetBay.”

Randle said the design will be released in the coming months.

Many are wondering what will happen to the nearby Publix store on 23rd Street.

Publix corporate officials did not return our calls.