We’re reposting this article since the work starts Wednesday: Kentucky Avenue will close between Orange Street and Lemon Street starting May 1 for construction of the five-story Heritage Plaza parking garage, the city of Lakeland has announced. The closure is expected to last until the end of 2019.

Utility work has already resulted in several parking places being closed, city Business Development Manager Jason Willey said.

The red square represents the portion of Kentucky Avenue that will be closed starting May 1. The Heritage Plaza parking garage will be built on the current surface lot marked in orange.

The 824-space downtown garage is a joint venture between the city of Lakeland, Lakeland Regional Health Systems, MidFlorida Credit Union and BKP Five LLC. In a condominium arrangement, each entity will own a certain number of parking spaces and pay a pro-rated share of construction costs.

The city of Lakeland, paying $6.3 million of the projected $11 million cost, will own 399 spaces. Twenty to 30 will be set aside for use by downtown visitors during business hours, and all 399 will be available to visitors during nights and weekends, City Manager Tony Delgado said.

The Kentucky Avenue side of the garage.

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Barry Friedman founded Lkldnow.com in 2015 as the culmination of a career in print and digital journalism. Since 1982, he has used the tools of reporting, editing and content curation to help people in Lakeland understand their community better.

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