Lake Nona Announces Plans For Linear Community Park
New Public Recreational Area Provides Eco-Friendly Alternative to Stormwater Management with Featured Waterway
ORLANDO, Fla. – (July 11, 2019) – Today, Lake Nona announces plans for a new, seven-acre linear park anchored by an open waterway designed to serve as an alternative for stormwater management. Surrounding the waterway, the park is planned to feature multiple trails, pocket parks, and space for activity that will stretch more than 100 feet wide along a half-mile path from Lake Nona Town Center to the heart of the community’s Laureate Park neighborhood. The proposed linear park is expected to begin construction next year.
“In Lake Nona, we’re always looking for ways to do things better,” said Tavistock Development Company President Jim Zboril. “We could have gone the traditional route of building a road and the infrastructure to manage stormwater underground, but instead we challenged our team to be resourceful and think differently. Creative thinking led to this linear park that not only provides a solution for stormwater, but creates an amenity our residents and visitors can benefit from.”
The proposed park, incorporating recreational activities and multiple mobility paths with a stormwater management solution, is a first-of-its-kind for southeast Orlando. Contrary to the traditional treatment of stormwater through a series of underground pipes, the park will replace more than a half-mile of east-west roadway and its associated infrastructure with an open waterway and surrounding park. The water will flow over a series of weirs (low-head dams) from west to east into an existing lake within Laureate Park. The recirculation of water from the existing lake to a series of source points on the west end of the park will ensure water is always flowing.
“Tavistock continues to be a critical partner in ensuring as our Orlando grows, it is done in a sustainable way, focused on innovation, while serving and benefiting our residents,” said City of Orlando Planning Official Elisabeth Dang. “This proposed project shows some of that same vision, with potential to create not only unique places to gather, but to also preserve and expand green space, further mobility options and increase water quality in one of the fastest growing areas in our city.”
Designed by local landscape architect Dix.Hite + Partners, the park’s linear design supports multiple mobility paths woven with lush landscaping, water features, and canopied seating options that flow along the main waterway. Plans include transportation lanes to support the community’s Move Nona initiative with a multimodal network of paths for walking, running, biking, and autonomous shuttles. The paths will also connect to Lake Nona’s 44 miles of planned trails. The park’s pedestrian bridges will allow guests to easily enjoy both sides of the park that each provide different amenities parallel to the waterway. Within the park, a two-acre communal area will provide a new space to host even more community events with a large lawn, playground, and shaded recreational areas.
Additionally, the new linear park provides options for Lake Nona to support and expand two of its growing community programs dedicated public art and the relocation of mature trees. The park’s design provides multiple options for new outdoor art installations or sculptures adding to Lake Nona’s collection that currently includes “The Beacon” and “Glass House” among others. Plans also call to incorporate mature relocated trees to further enhance the quality of green space and provide additional shade. Since the beginning of the year, dozens of relocated trees have been integrated into plans for current and future projects throughout Lake Nona including Boxi Park, Lake Nona Town Center, Laureate Park and other residential projects. Lake Nona plans to relocate more than 200 trees in 2019.
The linear park, which will be operated by Tavistock, is one of three park projects underway in Lake Nona. The other two are City of Orlando parks – Heroes Community Park and McCoy Community Park. Heroes Community Park will open this Saturday, July 13 and McCoy Community Park is scheduled to open later this year.