The board that oversees the Citrus Connection is in a financial dispute with Polk County government that the transit system says could jeopardize its financial stability. The Lakeland Area Mass Transit District board is demanding that the county pay an overdue $382,000 bill within 15 days. County officials have withheld payment because they want the transit district to stop billing for its accrued pension liability under the state retirement system. While the head of the Citrus Connection says they’ll find a way to continue bus service to the county for now, the agency’s finance director says state and federal grants will be jeopardized without the matching funds.
The city of Lakeland had hoped to finish a project disrupting traffic on Cleveland Heights Boulevard before the start of classes Monday at nearby Carlton Palmore Elementary School. But officials said today that recent rains have delayed completion of the project by about two weeks. More
Two streets bordering the Heritage Plaza Garage construction site downtown are currently closed, and a third will be blocked for nine weeks starting July 22, according to the city of Lakeland. In addition, 12 to 14 daily weekday deliveries of large pre-cast concrete panels are expected to further disrupt traffic for four months. More
Scheduled to go into effect today: New electronic signs on Florida Avenue that will flash warnings when downtown rail crossing barriers are about to go down. Drivers can choose alternate routes or stay the course, according to a spokesman for the Florida Department of Transportation, which funded the nearly $900,000 system, the first of its kind in the state.
Reroute 2020, a new system of bus routes for Lakeland, will be implemented Oct. 1 after the plan was approved Wednesday by the board overseeing the Citrus Connection transit service. During a two-month test, response from riders was overwhelmingly positive, board members were told.
LEARN MORE: Proposal details | Promotional video | Video: Citrus Connection’s director describes the changes
Constant traffic on two-lane West Pipkin Road between Florida Avenue and Harden Boulevard is already a burden, those who live there say; they are speaking with county commissioners today to seek relief in the face of new housing developments and large employers that will add more trips to the busy road.
Downtown Lakeland’s New York Avenue bicycle path is nearing completion. A few improvements are being made prior to the final inspection, which is expected to take place next month, Lakeland Public Works Director Heath Frederick said.
The three-block path between Lime and Main Streets is formally called a “bicycle track,” but it’s more of a connector that will take cyclists between a future trail along the west side of Lake Hunter and the planned over-the-railroad pedestrian bridge that will connect New York Avenue with Lake Wire. More