How could the three quadrants around Canada Road and I-40 look in years to come? Will there be new construction, bike trails or lighting?
Results of the “Lakeland Small Area Plan” have been released and contain development ideas for the approximately 215 acres which are zoned commercial with significant amounts of undeveloped property. The quadrants are the northwest, northeast and southwest corners of the interstate exchange area at Canada Road.
Last fall, the City requested a study utilizing specialists from Looney Ricks Kiss, Alta Planning + Design and Fisher Arnold. Three days of discussions and workshops in November and December were offered to stakeholders (Realtors, utilities, TDOT, etc.) and Lakeland residents, all at The Refuge Church in Lakeland. Although crowds were sparse at all three sessions, the team was able to determine that Lakeland residents like their town and want to ensure growth maintains a neighborhood atmosphere.
The study will be review by the EDC (Economic Development Commission) and MPC (Municipal Planning Commission) before going to the BOC (Board of Commissioners).
The full report is linked to this article. Listed below is the potential development plan as listed in the 20-page document.
Potential Development Plan
The design charrette investigated two potential development scenarios: a low-intensity option that illustrated a conservative pattern of development including one-story buildings and generous setbacks; and a high-intensity option that included multistory commercial, residential and other development that anticipated significant development over the next 20+ years.
Key elements of the plan include:
- Retail/commercial activity concentrated along Canada Road nearest the Interstate 40 interchange, and along the south side of Beverle Rivera Drive.
- Connections (for motorists, bicyclists and pedestrians) across Canada Road and other arterial and collector roads to enable easy and safe crossover from one part of the study area to the other.
- Different scales and types of residential development (from attached townhouse to single-family homes) to aid in a comfortable transition from the commercial core to the low-density residential neighborhoods to surround the study area.
- Preservation of natural areas where appropriate for topographical, stormwater or habitat considerations.
- Interconnected networks of tree-lined streets that provide access to people within the new developments as well as neighboring areas, giving everyone multiple means of access to the area.
- Appropriately scaled blocks, buildings and streets that foster a safe, attractive and pedestrian-friendly environment.
- Street-facing buildings with parking located on-street, between or to the rear of buildings to give the area a Main Street-type of feeling.
- Sensitivity to the incremental nature of development that will likely follow existing property patterns, with the exception of an alternative plan for the northeast quadrant which showed a large “town square” type of development.
- Extension of multiuse trails and improvements to local parks to promote more recreational activity, which in turn will lead to a healthier community.
- Streetscape enhancements such as lighting, curb and gutter drainage, landscaping, sidewalks and paths for a more beautiful community.