Nearly $1M put toward streetscape program on Church Street

The City of Orlando will put another $952,000 into the streetscape program on West Church Street that was first conceived 10 years ago. 

It was originally a $17 million federal earmark put forward by Congresswoman Corrine Brown. Monday, the work is still being finished, but that does not frustrate Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer.

"That money was actually dormant for a number of years,” he said. So once we actually started the design and the construction, it's gone like any other project would."

The $17 million project put wider sidewalks, new street lamps, and narrowed Church Street to make it more accessible for buses and bikers. Dyer loves what's finished.

"It's really improved the curb appeal," he said.

Dyer says the hope is that the new streetscape will be a catalyst for redevelopment.

"We anticipate there is going to be a lot of future development along that corridor between the Citrus Bowl and the soccer stadium and the Amway Center."

First though, the city will have to spend an additional $952,000 to redo a communications hub. It was put under the ground during the past five years of construction, but now has to be moved because the city no longer has the right of way. 

Mayor Dyer says the fight over where to put the soccer stadium is why taxpayers will pay.

"Probably if you are going to attribute it to something, it's probably the moving of the soccer stadium."

If the soccer stadium would have been put in the original spot that the city had planned, just east of Church and Parramore, the money would not have been spent.