11th Anniversary of HOLA
Last week, we celebrated the 11th anniversary of the City’s Hispanic Office for Local Assistance (HOLA).
The HOLA office provides valuable information and referral services to residents and newcomers to Central Florida, connecting them with more than 140 government and community organizations to find jobs, housing, healthcare services, educational opportunities and other resources.
Since opening in 2004, the HOLA office has served more than 150,000 citizens through in-person visits, calls and emails. Orlando is a diverse, multicultural community, and the office helps welcome newcomers to our City.
New partnerships are being planned that will allow the HOLA office to work with representatives from Latin American governments to better help new residents get acclimated to living in Orlando. Mayor Buddy Dyer recognized Commissioner Ortiz for his leadership in these efforts and helping us to connect citizens to all that our City has to offer.
Earth Day Events
The City of Orlando has worked to become one of the most sustainable cities in America to ensure that we protect our natural resources and amenities for our residents and future generations to come.
The key to that effort has been working hand in hand with our residents. During the entire month of April, which is known as Earth Month and April 22nd as Earth Day, the City is hosting multiple events for our community to join us in our effort to “Go Green.”
From festivals, to composting classes; to workshops on incentives to help save energy, water and money; to volunteer events to help spruce up our parks and green spaces – there is a way for everyone to get involved. Visit Cityoforlando.net for a full listing of events and more information.
Spring Fiesta Council Update
The 26th annual Spring Fiesta in the Park will take place this year on April 11 and 12 at Lake Eola in Downtown Orlando. Take advantage of the beautiful spring weather with family and friends while enjoying over 200 artist and craft booths, a kid’s play area and live entertainment. Dogs are also welcome at Spring Fiesta, which will have pet-friendly vendors and activities available at the 98.9 WMMO Pet Fiesta Area. For more information, visit cityoforlando.net.
Agenda Items of Note
The Council reviewed the construction contract for the second phase of our ORLANDO WALKS sidewalk project to improve pedestrian safety and provide an alternate, environmentally-friendly transportation option.
Through the first phase approximately 17 miles of new sidewalks were added.
This second phase will add 22 more miles of new sidewalks. Construction will start in the spring 2015 and is expected to be completed in late 2016.
LYMMO (North Quarter & Lime Updates)
The new North Quarter loop will add an additional 5 LYMMO stations to the current LYMMO Orange Line.
The expanded route will better connect the North Quarter District to Downtown’s Central Business District and provide greater mobility and accessibility for the community. This new service will start on Sunday, April 19.
And coming this spring, LYMMO will break ground on a new route called the Lime line. The Lime Line will provide another transportation option for our community that will provide convenient access to LYNX Central Station, SunRail, the Parramore neighborhood, FAMU College of Law and the Creative Village. The Lime Line is expected to be complete by the first half of 2016.
Relocating Palms from I-4 Project
As part of the Ultimate I4 project the state will be removing the existing palm trees along to interstate.
Our City staff and Downtown South Main Street have been working together with the Florida Department of Transportation to try to save and reuse as many trees as possible.
Our Families Parks and Recreation Division, Downtown Development Board and the Downtown South Neighborhood Improvement District will be repurposing some of the large date palms.
On Monday the Council reviewed agreements with some private property owners to allow us to place the trees in private property along South Orange Avenue that will allow us to move forward with this great project.
This Earth Month, the National Recreation and Park Association, Disney| ABC Television Group and ESPN are collaborating to revitalize parks across the U.S. including a park right here in Orlando through Parks Build Community.
One of three of our local parks will receive a $20,000 grant and Orlando residents get to choose which one. Projects our residents will get to choose from include:
- Trail Improvements at Bill Frederick Park
- Equipment for Parramore Kidz Zone Football
- Or a shade structure for the Orlando Skate Park.
Voting is open now until April 30 at the National Recreation and Park Association website at NRPA.org.
This Wednesday, we’ll join with Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs and executives from Tavistock Group to break ground on the United States Tennis Association’s New Home of American Tennis in Lake Nona. In addition to breaking ground, USTA will unveil the site’s official name and new renderings of the 63-acre campus that will include more than 100 tennis courts, office facilities and a lodge for players to stay while training at the facility. The Lake Nona site will also serve as home to UCF’s varsity tennis program.
There was a grant on Monday’s agenda to the City from the Florida Department of Transportation on behalf of USTA, to construct the entry road that is needed to access the new facility from Lake Nona Boulevard.
This new USTA project will create more than 150 new-to-Florida jobs with an average salary of nearly $85,000 which is 200% the average annual wage.
USTA’s decision to open this state of the art facility in Orlando is yet another example of our community’s public and private partners ability to collaborate unlike just about any other community in the nation.