Satellite view of proposed master planning DRI
City Commissioners, staff, Chamber and Main Street representatives heard a preliminary overview of how redevelopment of the current Chain of Lakes Stadium/Southwest Complex property is likely to proceed. The City actually plans to trigger a “Development of Regional Impact” study (DRI) on a major portion (approximately 200 acres) of the community’s southwest quadrant bounded on the north by Avenue O, south by the Lake Lulu/Shipp canal, east by Park Lake/First Street South and west by Lake Shipp. Local developer Tony Binge presented the conceptual scenerio involving commercial, residential and enhanced public access to the Chain of Lakes. City staff underscored that the plan will provide for all amenities currently found on the Chain of Lakes property including a new facility for Theatre Winter Haven, a new aquatic center and other recreational amenities. Public access to Lake Lulu and the east shore of Lake Shipp would be greatly enhanced.
The master plan being contemplated will produce land use guidelines including more inter-city in fill development of a very high quality as well as an increased emphasis on Chain of Lakes access and appreciation, connectivity to walking trails and downtown.
The information was shared during the City’s annual planning retreat where those present outlined a vision for the city both five and ten years in the future. The areas of emphasis included Economic Development, Community Neighborhoods, Lakes, Leisure, Growth and Development and City Services. The City continues to use the results of the “Our Future By Design” visioning document as a significant benchmark for planning purposes. The document was developed in 1999-2000 by a broad cross section of Winter Haven residents (approximately 200 participated throughout the process).