City and state transportation planners have coalesced around a vision for the future of South Florida Avenue that includes two 10.5-foot travel lanes and an 11-foot center strip of turn lanes with some medians. Twelve-foot-wide landscaped sidewalks shared by pedestrians and bicyclists would replace the current narrow walkways and temporary concrete barriers on both sides of the street.
On Friday, Lakeland city commissioners signaled they are prepared to endorse that vision. They unanimously asked their staff to prepare a resolution approving their staff’s recommendation endorsing the three-lane option for the Dixieland portion of the state road — officially State Road 37 — that bisects the city.
Mayor Bill Mutz said the plan accomplishes multiple goals: “This iteration is attempting to address safety. It’s attempting to revitalize an area in terms of its ability to be more thriving economically for pedestrians to walk through. It is an attempt to push traffic off to other corridors at the same time so that it’s not being used as a thoroughfare through going downtown.”
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