LAKELAND, FL (August 25, 2016) – The City of Lakeland is very pleased to announce that Lakeland Senior Living, LLC d/b/a Lake Gibson Village has donated an 18-acre parcel of land south of Carpenter’s Way to the City of Lakeland Parks & Recreation Department. The 18-acre parcel, valued at $2.25 million will be developed into a neighborhood park. Evangel Christian School used a portion of the complex and the sports fields until it closed in 2006. The existing fields have been vacant and in dire need of maintenance ever since.
Lake Gibson Village purchased the vacant Without Walls Church property and surrounding 66 acres to develop Lake Gibson Village Senior Living Community. Phase one of the development includes the restoration of the former historic Carpenters Home, which has been transformed into 142 independent senior living apartments with many of the original architectural details preserved. Residents will begin moving in this month. Phase two, which is currently in the early stages of development, will include new construction of separate assisted living and memory care buildings as well as additional independent living residences.
“We are excited about the City’s plans for the property and happy that the planned amenities will be enjoyed by the entire community,” said Renee Tucker, CEO of Lake Gibson Village and spokesperson for the owners.
City Manager Tony Delgado said, “Earlier in the year, Lake Gibson Village agreed to lease the sports fields to the City of Lakeland for $1 per year. This local agreement started dialogue for something much bigger and now we are excited to share, not only a generous gift but our vision of a neighborhood park.”
Bob Donahay, City of Lakeland Parks & Recreation Director said, “This site is a prime piece of real estate and we have big plans for the property. The City of Lakeland really does appreciate the generous donation that will allow us to add to our park inventory without the costly expense of purchasing land.” He added, “Once we build it out, the 18-acre parcel will be a great amenity for the neighborhood that will house two multi-purpose fields with permanent lighting, a walking path, a modular playground and a dog park. We also have plans for concessions and restrooms so one day we can host youth sports leagues at the facility.”
“This is a win-win and the City of Lakeland is extremely grateful that we have partners like Lake Gibson Village that care about the well-being of the community, enough to donate park land valued at $2.25 million,” said Delgado. “We plan on building a much needed park facility that the surrounding neighborhood will enjoy and the sports fields will allow us to address the immediate needs of youth sports programs.”
The City of Lakeland was incorporated January 1885 and has grown to become on of the largest inland communities in Florida. With a current population over 100,000 Lakeland continues to grow. It has been designated a Standard Metropolitan Statistical Area by the US Census Bureau for over 30 years. With tourist attractions and gulf beaches only an hour away, Lakeland continues to capitalize on its ideal central Florida location along the I-4 corridor. The City owns and operates Lakeland Electric, the third largest publicly owned utility in Florida and it was one of the first to offer power in the Sunshine State over 110 years ago. To learn more about the City of Lakeland, please visit www.lakelandgov.net.