February Meeting Recap

****UPDATE from Historic Preservation Board:

The HPB approved Sam Sheets revised plan for the new construction which will lower the building to the site’s original grade. He will have a lot of the fill removed, but some will be left to fill in the house’s stem wall foundation. Revised renderings here which were approved by the HPB and also presented to LMNA last week.


As often as I can, I will summarize the neighborhood meetings for those of you who missed it. But here’s the catch-I am not going to do a great job. Why you ask? Simple. I want you to attend the meetings, of course!

But seriously, I know many of you have unavoidable conflicts. Tuesday nights are hard. I hope this summary finds you well and helps keep you connected to the neighborhood. Be sure to email us with any questions :historiclmna@gmail.com.


We had a great turn out for the February LMNA meeting with many new neighbors and some folks who are just new to the meetings.  We did not have enough time to mingle so hopefully you all will come to the next LMNA social!

Here’s a summary of what took place at the meeting:

Sam Sheets, architect for the project on 310 E. Park Street explained the project and how it has changed from the original plan.  He addressed concerns about the large amount of dirt that was dumped at the site. The project goes back before the Historic Preservation board on Thursday morning. The plan adjustment means much of the dirt will be hauled away. One neighbor was concerned about flooding in the area. Joe Baan, P.E. Manager of Engineering, Public Works City of Lakeland responded to an email I sent regarding the concern prior to the meeting. His response:

“It appears that the property at 310 E. Park Street and the neighboring parcels drain southwest towards Park Street. The placement of fill at 310 E. Park Street is not expected to have a significant impact on the peak stormwater stages in the roadway because runoff from this site still drains to the same curb inlets in front of 211 E. Park Street and the basin area associated with those curb inlets does not appear to have changed.”

LPD Chief Giddens and his team were back to update the neighborhood on the concerns we had expressed a few months back. Most notably the lighting behind the laundromat has been installed to illuminate the parking lot behind it and deter loitering. We learned about the new COPS program and heard about crime trends in the area. Overall Lake Morton is a safe neighborhood. The Chief could not emphasize enough the importance of locking our cars and not leaving valuables in them – Lock it or Lose it. We thank the Chief and his team for coming and for their hard work.

Jim Dehne from cit of Lakeland Code Enforcement Department updated the group on what is expected to happen with the house at 830 Johnson Avenue. The house fire there a few weeks ago caused significant damage and the city has condemned it.  Neighbors were concerned about trespassers. Captan Lehman emailed this the day after the meeting:

“As of now, I have not be able to locate a Florida Statute to enforce Trespassing in a Condemned Structure.  I also spoke with Fire Marshall Frank Bass about people on this property even though it is condemned due to the structure fire.  As of now, the homeowner is able to be at the residence and enters at their own risk.  If I locate something to the contrary, I will let you know.

On another note, if they decided to renovate/rebuild the house, it could be designated as a construction site (with proper signage) and then the offense of Trespass could possibly be enforced.

Finally, between now and tomorrow, I have tasked one of our Uniform Patrol Officers to reach out to the property owner to see if we can obtain Trespass Authorization for the property to allow us to trespass people from the  property other than the owner/designee.  This will at least assist us in keeping others out of the area.”

Alice Collins reminded the group of the upcoming Historic Home & Garden Tour on March 5th.


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