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With a new year, the mayors of Arlington, Bartlett and Lakeland are looking to move major development and infrastructure projects forward in 2022. Today: Lakeland 

Lakeland Mayor Mike Cunningham sees the opening in late summer of the city’s new $40 million Lakeland Preparatory School high school wing as the most significant project on the horizon for the suburb in 2022.

“I know they’re progressing quite well,” he said. “It’s just really, really exciting to see that actually finally coming to fruition and know that the kids who are in the first ninth grade class at the high school this August will actually graduate out of the Lakeland School System.”

Cunningham is also happy that this year will see the start of the long-awaited $25 million-plus New Canada Road project.

“And not a moment too soon because that is something we need just from a logistical standpoint to get our kids back and forth to the new school,” he said.

Lakeland is also in the process now of expanding its sewer capacity. One lane is currently closed on U.S. 70 for work on the Clear Creek sewer interceptor.

“That’s big for the eastern side of town from a development standpoint,” Cunningham said. “We’ll really see some progress on that project in the next year.”

He points out that the city will also continue reevaluating some of its land development regulations and will work on the creation of a new Parks and Recreation master plan.

Cunningham is also ready to see a wave of retail openings this year with the city’s two big mixed-use projects under construction – The Lake District and Lakeland Town Square, as well as the next development phases of each.

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“I’m just looking forward to seeing things starting to open and some growth actually shedding some light on our financial perspective for the outlook of Lakeland as well,” he said.

He expects Lakeland Town Square developer Vince Smith to bring plans to the city for Phase 2 in the next couple of months.

Now in the final year of his first term as Lakeland mayor, Cunningham will be up for re-election this fall.

“I haven’t decided just yet if it’s the cards for me to re-run,” he said. “I’m evaluating the pros and cons.”

He says he will likely wait until spring before making a final decision.


By , Special to the Daily Memphian | Published: January 08, 2022