J. Seward Johnson Statues in Lakeland FloridaWhere is “Religion in the City?”

Don’t worry, Chris Craig’s popular column hasn’t disappeared. It’s just Metro i4 News. As a matter of fact, a lot of the Lakeland Local content is moving to our sister publication.

In July 2008, Lakeland Local welcomed additional authors when Billy Townsend, Lorrie Delk Walker, and Darby Critendon brought their popular writing to Lakeland Local. Over the last year we’ve had many insightful, engaging, and informative columns about life in Lakeland. That’s not going to change. We’re simply expanding and refocusing our coverage. We will use our two publications to offer different styles and areas of content.

Metro i4 News will feature work of interest to readers from all of Central Florida. Mi4 writers will focus less on breaking news than on how breaking news affects your life. Columnists will have the opportunity to discuss how news in Tampa and Orlando may affect Lakeland readers, or simply publicize events only a short drive away. Our photographer, Tom Hagerty, will have all of Florida as his canvas. In his column, he’ll also have the opportunity to showcase his amazing work no matter where it was shot. (Hagerty’s fans were especially appreciative last week of finding his black and white work from the 1970s. Make sure to stop by today to see his work from the 80s.)

Lakeland Local will continue to feature news and information specific to Lakeland readers. We will focus on presenting useful information — such as our popular maps detailing Lakeland life — and investigative reporting such as our original work on red light cameras. Again, the focus is less on breaking news, and more on local news.

To better serve all readers, we will use email, RSS feeds, and Twitter accounts to present the columns and information where and when you want them. Web readers will have the option to choose from home pages that feature traditional article synopsis, or simply headlines for those in a hurry. Twitter readers will get bonus notices of breaking news.

In addition to our coverage, we’ll offer links to important stories you won’t want to miss. We know you have just a few minutes each day for news. We’re going to make it 10 minutes you’ll look forward to each day.

By August 1st, our rearrangement should be complete. As we move forward we’ll make adjustments where needed. Our goal is to make it easy for you to find the local news and information you can’t find anywhere else.

Photo CC by Chuck Welch for Lakeland Local