Work will start soon on a $4 million project set to appease the demands of many residents and workers in the Lake Nona area.

The Montessori School of Lake Nona is awaiting a permit to start building a nearly 24,000-square-foot facility on a vacant site on Dowden Road just west of Narcoossee Road, between CVS and the Nona Park Village apartment complex.

A general contractor is expected to be chosen by the end of the month for the new Montessori, which is slated for a summer 2017 completion. Orlando firms Rabits & Romano Architecture Inc. and Z Development Services LLC are the project architect and engineer, respectively. The school is being developed by Orlando-based Garito & Co. LLC.

A Montessori has been a huge ask from several of the 11,000 residents in Lake Nona. In fact, a Facebook parent group for area families seeking Montessori education for their kids was established in 2013.  Lake Nona Montessori Families Facebook page.

Though the Montessori School of Lake Nona’s property is just outside the boundaries of the 14-square-mile Lake Nona, it’s still expected to be a huge asset to the booming southeast Orlando master-planned community that houses the 650-acre Medical City biotech hub and its nearly 500 employees.

“A Montessori’s emphasis on providing the highest quality education fits perfectly with what the Lake Nona community is all about,” Garito & Co. broker/principal Tim Garito told Orlando Business Journal. “Bringing a Montessori school to Lake Nona fills a void in the area’s educational needs. It was always a matter of when, not if, Lake Nona would get a Montessori School.”

And the Montessori project now is nearly double the size of the original plan, he added.

“We expanded it drastically because the demand was so high,” Garito told OBJ. “For the last six months to a year, there’s just been overwhelming demand for a Montessori in that area. So we went as big as we possibly could.”