What Lakeland is like for active adults?
Lakeland is a city of 94,000 in central Florida, east of Tampa with Orlando to its east. Lakeland is part of the Lakeland-Winterhaven Metro and growing fast, having grown 18% from 2000 to 2008. Florida Southern College with its enrollment of just under 2,000 is located in town. Lakeland was an important town during the Florida land boom and many of its historic structures date from that period including the Terrace Hotel, New Florida Hotel (Regency Towers), Polk Theatre, Promenade of Lake Mirror, and the former Lakeland Public Library (now the Trammel Building and home to the Chamber of Commerce. People often mention that the downtown area is very beautiful - the folks who live in Lakeland are very positive about their community.
What is special about this retirement community?
The Detroit Tigers have held their spring training here in Lakeland since the 1930's. Frank Lloyd Wright's "A Child of the Sun" project for Florida Southern College is the largest one-site collection of Frank Lloyd Wright buildings in the world. There are 9 buildings in the project. Lake Mirror Park in downtown Lakeland is a particularly beautiful setting. There are several historic districts.
Local economy is driven by
There are several corporations with headquarters here, including the supermarket chain Publix. Unemployment is above the national average.
Climate and Physical Environment
Lakeland is near I4 between Orlando and Tampa in central Florida. The terrain is flat with Lake Mirror a prominent feature. Winters are warm and summers hot and humid.
Restaurants & Cultural Scene
There are frequent festivals and many residents say there is a lively cultural scene. Its several colleges provide additional culture. Polk State College shares a campus with a regional branch of the University of South Florida. It is an easy drive to Tampa or Orlando for more serious culture.
The Lakeland Regional Medical Center provides the local hospital services. Other hospitals are nearby.
Lakeland has an Amtrak station. Residents can use the Orlando, Tampa, or even the small Lakeland airport - a former Army Airbase.