Most of the parking in a six-story garage planned for downtown Lakeland will be used by employees of large businesses, but some of the spaces will be available for members of the public visiting downtown, City Manager Tony Delgado said today. More
A new 34-foot mural on the south-facing wall at Thom Downs Antiques on North Florida Avenue is the first of three commissioned by the Lakeland Community Development Agency. The mural was painted by Gabriela Jaxon (website), a native of Peru who grew up in Lakeland and spends much of her time in New York City working with mural masters.
Save Southern Heritage, an organization that has been a vocal advocate for keeping the Confederate monument in Munn Park, has filed a federal lawsuit seeking to keep the city of Lakeland from moving the 108-year-old memorial to Veterans Park. More
After casting the deciding vote today that will allow the city to proceed with plans to move the Confederate monument out of Munn Park, Commissioner Stephanie Madden said it was the power of personal stories that persuaded her. More
The divisive issues around moving the Confederate monument from Munn Park to Veterans Park continued to divide Lakeland city commissioners Friday, with some suggesting voters should have a say during a January special election and others insisting they were elected to make tough but potentially unpopular decisions that benefit the community.
Commissioners discuss the monument again today when they will be asked toward the end of their 3 p.m. meeting to make a budget transfer to facilitate the monument move. More
UPDATE: A rooftop fire at Mojo Federal downtown did so little damage early this morning that the restaurant and bar is planning to open at 12:30 p.m., just an hour and a half later than their usual Sunday opening. The fire, which started after closing, was confined to a small area around the base of a rooftop smokestack connected to the barbecue restaurant’s meat smoker. Some debris could be seen on a nearby patio this morning. The fire set off interior sprinklers, so workers this morning mopped up water. Crews from the Lakeland Fire Department’s nearby downtown headquarters responded quickly, according to Stuart Simm, owner of the neighboring Federal Bar. The pre-dawn photos below are by David Dickey Jr.:
Work is scheduled to start later this month on exterior renovations to the 94-year-old, eight-story downtown hotel. The $2 million project is backed by the same investment group assembled by Lakeland native Rob Scharar that bankrolled the hotel’s $7 million restoration two decades ago.