City News Blog


This is the official blog of the City of Lakeland, Florida. Check back frequently to stay up to date with all that going on in our beautiful city!

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**UPDATE: New Jersey Road is now open and the closure has ended.**



Lakeland, FL (June 20, 2017, 3 pm) | Water utilities had a detreated water main fail on the west side of New Jersey Road north of Edgewood Drive.  The water main has been repaired, however, an 18” storm pipe was undermined and collapsed during the process.


Public works crews are mobilizing to repair the storm pipe and until further evaluated, will not know the duration of the repair.


New Jersey Road will remain closed in both directions between Edgewood Drive and Phyllis Street until repairs are completed and the area is safe. 


Detours are in place.

Developer Green Mills Group Hosts Grand Opening of Aida Palms, a New Construction Affordable Housing Community.


Lakeland, FL (June 20, 2017) | On Thursday, June 22, 2017, the City of Lakeland will celebrate the grand opening of Aida Palms, a new affordable housing development. Aida Palms is a “green” certified community and will have 96 residences, on-site professional management, a fitness center, dog park, playground, computer center, clubroom and other amenities.


Aida Palms’ financing partners include JP Morgan Chase, Raymond James Tax Credit Funds and Florida Community Loan Fund. Raymond James provided an investment of approximately $15.5 million in tax credit equity and JP Chase provided a $5 million construction loan. Florida Community Loan Fund is the permanent lender and provided a $700,000 long-term loan.


“RJTCF is honored and very proud to be a small component of another successful GMG development.  We look forward to seeing Aida Palms enrich the lives of of so many deserving individuals and families within the city of Lakeland and Polk County.” said Sean Jones, Director of Acquisitions for Raymond James Tax Credit Funds. 


Construction commenced in 2016 and recently completed. Aida Palms began leasing in March 2017 and was fully pre-leased prior to construction completion. Total development cost was approximately $16.5 million. The community was developed and built on time and on budget.


“Aida Palms is a shining example of what affordable housing can be. We hope our residents will be proud to call the community their home, and we’re grateful for support from the City of Lakeland and our financing partners”, said Mitchell Rosenstein, a principal and co-founder of the community’s developer Green Mills Group.


During the grand opening, residents and guests will have a chance to interact with many of the groups responsible for Aida Palms’ successful completion, including the developer, financing partners and public officials.


Kevin Cook, Director of Communications | 863/834-6264


LAKELAND, FL (June 12, 2017) - The City of Lakeland was recently designated a 2017 Playful City by the national non-profit KaBOOM! Playful City USA honors cities and towns across the country for putting the needs of families first so kids can learn, grow and develop important life skills. These communities are transforming ordinary places into playful spaces and using play as a solution to the challenges facing their residents.


Lakeland was one of 258 communities recognized across the United States for making it as easy as possible for kids to play. In total, the winning communities have more than 14,000 safe and engaging play spaces that serve more than 4-million kids.


The City of Lakeland’s planning process ensures that play opportunities are dispersed throughout the City. Neighborhoods have balanced access to both play programming and park space. Partnerships with outside agencies and non-profits create great play spaces and demonstrate the commitment that our community has for improving and sustaining recreational spaces throughout the City of Lakeland.


Pam Page, Deputy Director of Parks & Recreation said, “Play is a critical component of a child’s well-being and therefore a stepping stone to enabling children to become productive future community leaders. We are dedicated to promoting life-long recreational opportunities to help further the advancement of our children and improve the quality of life for our adult population.”


As cities are becoming hotbeds for innovation, communities across the country are creating inventive ways to attract and retain residents. Playful City USA honorees are taking bold action to ensure kids have great places to play – all with the ultimate goal of making play the easy choice for all kids, no matter where they live.


“We are thrilled to recognize Lakeland for putting kids first,” said KaBOOM CEO James Siegal. “The health of our communities starts with the well-being of our kids and play is critical for them to thrive. It is our collective responsibility to ensure that all kids get the childhood they deserve and Lakeland is doing great things.”


To see the full list of Playful City USA communities and to learn more about making play the easy choice for kids, visit You can also take part in the conversation with leaders across the country using#PLAYceforkids on Twitter and Facebook.


About KaBOOM!

KaBOOM! is the national non-profit dedicated to giving all kids—particularly those growing up in poverty in America—the childhood they deserve filled with balanced and active play, so they can thrive. Since 1996, KaBOOM! has collaborated with partners to build, open or improve nearly 16,700 playgrounds, engaged more than one million volunteers and served 8.5 million kids. KaBOOM! creates great places to play, inspires communities to promote and support play and works to drive the national discussion about the importance of play in fostering healthy and productive lives. To learn why #playmatters and why cities are embracing #playability: visit




Kevin Cook, Director of Communications | City of Lakeland | 863/834-6264