Your connection to the development team behind Lake Nona’s vibrant community. Read more from the master planners each month for the latest updates and a behind-the-scenes look at what’s going on in Lake Nona.
Happy New Year, Lake Nona!
We’re excited to welcome 2020 with you, take a look back at 2019’s accomplishments, and preview all of the new things to come this year. 2019 capped off an incredible decade for Lake Nona. Our community hosted former astronauts for an out-of-this-world Live and Local event, watched top NCAA athletes compete at the USTA National Campus, moved in new residents to Pixon Apartments and Somerset Crossings, expanded our community art program, welcomed the Johnson & Johnson Human Performance Institute to Medical City, launched the region’s first driverless shuttles, and grabbed a bite at Central Florida’s coolest new hangout – Boxi Park.
Over the years, thousands of families have moved here to join a community where residents become more than just neighbors. They’re friends who share apple pie each year at the Great American Block Party, walk their kids to school each morning, and cheer each other on at the annual Run Nona 5K & Nemours Kids Run, which celebrated its 12th anniversary in 2019.
Lake Nona schools also celebrated milestones in 2019. All four Orange County Public Schools were awarded an A rating for the 2018-2019 school year – a testament to our supportive and active community. And Lake Nona High School celebrated the 10th anniversary of Valencia College’s Collegiate Academy with 29 students receiving A.A. degrees and their high school diplomas – a new record for the program.
2019 was a busy year for Medical City with the opening of the new global headquarters for the Johnson and Johnson Human Performance Institute, adding new health tech start-ups to the GuideWell Innovation Center, and expanding the Ronald McDonald House at Nemours. UCF College of Medicine had more than 100 aspiring doctors accept their white coats. In 2020, the UCF Lake Nona Medical Center teaching hospital is scheduled to open. The teaching hospital will add to the world-class services available in Medical City, joining the Orlando VA Medical Center and Nemours Children’s Hospital, covering three pillars of specialized care for adults, veterans and children.
Throughout the last decade, Lake Nona’s sports and performance district has taken shape, bringing world-class facilities to Central Florida highlighted by the 100-court United States Tennis Association’s (USTA) National Campus. Since 2016, the campus has welcomed more than 675,000 visitors and provides plenty of programs for families, beginners and pros to get into the game. Nona Adventure Park and Heroes Community Park both opened in 2019, adding additional recreational space. This summer, XL Soccer World will open, providing another place for children and families to stay active together. 2020 also welcomes KPMG Lakehouse, the company’s global training facility that will bring nearly 1,000 people to our community each week.
Visitors and residents alike have been drawn to Lake Nona, thanks to a mix of new shopping and dining options that opened this year, including new tenants at Lake Nona Creekside and the grand opening of Foxtail Coffee. Boxi Park has made Lake Nona Town Center a go-to entertainment destination and hub for events, retail and dining. In 2020, the Lake Nona Wave Hotel will continue to take shape with a scheduled opening in 2021. We’ll also break ground on a state-of-the-art, integrated wellness facility and welcome a new office building to our growing Town Center.
With more residents and businesses moving in, mobility in and around our community continues to be a priority. In 2019, Lake Nona introduced Central Florida’s first autonomous shuttles within our living lab community to test this new technology and see how it can improve connectivity. Over the next few years, it will be even easier to explore Lake Nona, thanks to an innovative Linear Park, new pedestrian walkways, and dedicated lanes for the shuttles made possible by a $20 million federal BUILD grant awarded to Orange County in 2019. The grant will help create and enhance infrastructure to support new mobility options throughout all of Lake Nona’s 17 square miles.
We’re proud of the community that we’ve built and are continuing to build, but the true magic of our community is you. Thank you for being supportive, involved and engaged. We look forward to building a better future in Lake Nona together and can’t wait to share new and exciting things going on in our community in the new year and beyond – right here in Nonahood News with this new monthly column.