The Clearwater Holiday Parade kicks off Friday, Dec. 8, 7 p.m., at Crest Lake Park. More than 100 entries including floats, bands, clowns, motorcycles and walkers will strut down Cleveland Street in the popular annual illuminated event. Due to streetscape construction, there will be a few changes along the parade route. Floats will turn onto Prospect Street just before Myrtle Avenue, rather than continuing to East Street as in past years, and the reviewing stand will be located at Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard and Cleveland Street.
Before and after the parade, sidewalks in the Cleveland Street Streetscape construction zone are open and downtown merchants and restaurants invite the public to stop, shop and dine. In addition, free parking is available in the Garden Avenue Garage and in most city lots, metered spaces where indicated, and city garages after 6 p.m.
This week, new water lines on the north side of Cleveland Street in the streetscape construction zone are being connected to existing mains. Work on the large storm drain to the bluff is continuing eastward toward Garden Avenue. The intersection of Ft. Harrison Avenue and Cleveland Street remains closed as crews install drain structures and pipes around existing utilities. The intersection is expected to reopen to traffic before the end of December.
Motorists who travel north or south through downtown Clearwater are encouraged to use the Myrtle Avenue downtown bypass instead of Ft. Harrison Avenue. Construction is complete on Myrtle Avenue between Lakeview Avenue and Marshall Street, and the Department of Transportation has designated it the north-south Alt 19 route through Clearwater. Motorists can cut their travel time by avoiding construction zones on Ft. Harrison Avenue, and traffic signals on Myrtle Avenue have been timed to reduce drive times even further.
Streetscape work in the Osceola Avenue to Ft. Harrison Avenue block continues. Cleveland Street businesses remain open and accessible to pedestrian traffic on both sides of the street.
Downtown construction information is available on the city's website at www.myclearwater.com/downtown, and questions can be addressed through the Streetscape construction office at 462-6126.
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