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February 2004 Archives

A reminder: Monday, March 1 is the deadline to apply for our Environmental Planner opening.

The tripling of the price of coke since last year (due to decreased domestic capacity coupled with increased Chinese demand) is causing problems for integrated steel makers, including ISG.

Research is presently underway, looking at processes that treat sewage while generating electricity through fuel cells. (Plain Dealer coverage here)

U.S. 42 in Medina is slated for widening by ODOT.

The discussion about regionalism continued with a forum at the City Club, which included concerns about minority representation in regional government.

In housing news, The Pointe at Gateway goes condo thanks to rising housing demand, and the developer of luxury lakefront houses in Euclid is requesting property tax abatements.

FirstEnergy remains in the news with assertions in the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio proceedings that their rate plan is in the public's best interests, while the Federal Government spreads $2 million to Northeast Ohio communities and hospitals in reimbusement for last year's blackout.

Cleveland Metroparks is in preliminary talks with the City of Parma to purchase the West Creek Preserve and create a new reservation.

Cleveland Schools' massive building construction and rehabilitation project has started more slowly than hoped. Architecture critic Steven Litt worries that this could become a missed opportunity for the city distinguish itself, and points out a $75,000 grant that may go unused.

Enclosed shopping malls are struggling to compete in today's competitive, over-stored local retail market.

The Plain Dealer provides continuing coverage of the Arts and Development Levy.

Property tax rates in Medina and Cuyahoga Counties continue to rise, wheras rates elsewhere in the region are falling.

Locally-owned retail establishments in black communities in Cleveland are struggling to remain afloat.

The half-day paid holiday for Election Day is covered by the Plain Dealer.

Testimony on FirstEnergy's newest rate proposal continues, with experts claiming that the latest proposal would inhibit competition from other power suppliers.

Wednesday's New York Times included an article (free registration required) about the establishment of the Fund for Our Economic Future by Northeast Ohio charitable foundations.

Issue 9, on the March 2 ballot for Independence voters, will allow residents to decide whether to allow the rezoning of the 14.75 acre Independence Middle School site for senior housing.

Strongsville City Councilman Michael J. Daymut has provided decibel meters to residents living near I-71 and the Ohio Turnpike. "Complaints about traffic noise are coming not only from residents who live adjacent to I-71 and the turnpike, but from even greater distances since the recent lane additions."

North Royalton's master plan, by Strategic Public Policy, has experienced some delays.

The City of Olmsted Falls has obtained funding to construct a railroad underpass at Columbia Road. The 18-month construction project is expected to begin in February 2006.

The City of Cleveland plans to purchase and demolish ten houses at Seymour Avenue and W 38th Street in order to expand Roberto Clemente Baseball Park. Construction of a new school building nearby is also possible.

RTA will hold three public hearings on the Euclid Corridor project. The first will be on Wednesday, March 3, from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m. at the Hayden Garage, 1661 Hayden Ave. in East Cleveland.

In today's State of the City address, Mayor Campbell is expected to call for the construction of 10,000 homes and condominiums along Lake Erie.

City News has published the final section of a four part interview with Cleveland City Council President Frank Jackson about regionalism.

City of Cleveland officials have agreed to a plan to restore Doan Brook through Rockefeller Park. The current eight foot trench will be replaced by a graded slope that will provide a flood plain. Construction could begin as early as this fall.

Thomas Mulready includes a note on the Cuyahoga Valley Initiative in this week's Cool Cleveland newsletter.

The City of Cleveland Landmarks Commission nominated twelve Cleveland Public Schools buildings for landmark status. None of the buildings nominated are slated for demolition. Chairman Paul Volpe suggested that forthcoming nominations may be more controversial.

WCPN also reported on last week's Cuyahoga Valley event.

Preliminary plans for the Innerbelt reconstruction program have been released.

Gates Mills mayor Connie White wants Chagrin River Road to be declared a National Scenic Byway throughout the Chagrin Valley.

700,000 square feet of retail and 1 million square feet of office space will be built on a former landfill at Transportation Boulevard and I-480 in Garfield Heights. Retail tenants are slated to include Wal-Mart, Giant Eagle, Circuit City, Dick's Sporting Goods, Bed Bath and Beyond, Fashion Bug, Catherine's, Office Max, and Joanne, Etc.

Garfield Heights mayor Thomas J. Longo, new chairman of the Cuyahoga County Mayors and Managers Association, supports regionalism efforts.

Brook Park City Council approved the purchase of a right of way necessary to build a railroad underpass at Snow Road. Plans should be completed by mid-year.

The Euclid Sun Journal explores the challenges faced by citizen group Vision 20:20 over the last year and a half.

Five southwest Cuyahoga County suburbs and Columbia Township are working together to expand senior transportation services.

Michael Gill writes about the Innerbelt reconstruction process and local control in this week's Free Times.

An early version of Rocky River's master plan, produced by City Architecture, proposes major redevelopment for the city's downtown.

The City of Cleveland is examining the possibility of using Cleveland Browns Stadium for the proposed MLS expansion team, but team owner Bert Wolstein is not so enthusiastic. "I'm not interested, it doesn't work," he said.

The Ohio EPA reports that sewage treatment plants are worse polluters than industry, and dumped an estimated 4.38 billion gallons of sewage into the Cuyahoga river last year.

The USEPA's Great Lakes National Program Office is taking applications for $4.6 million in grant money for projects addressing:

  • Contaminated Sediments

  • Pollution Prevention/Reduction

  • Habitat Protection/Restoration

  • Invasive Species

  • Strategic or Emerging Issues
The deadline for applications is March 29, 2004.

The Plain Dealer covers yesterday's Cuyahoga Valley event. (A longer version is in the print edition.)

Strongsville voters will decide on a rezoning issue for a proposed $38 million retail complex on the March 2 ballot.

The Plain Dealer highlights the work of the First Suburbs Development Council on upgrading the housing stock of older suburbs.

The annual NEO Barometer survey (PDF) shows mixed results on questions relating to regional government.

The Rocky River Watershed Council last week formally organized, electing Medina County Commissioner Steve Hambley as chairman.

Summit County officials may support building a soccer-only stadium. MLS Commissioner Don "Garber said not enough money can be made when teams lease stadiums that are used or owned by other sports."

The widening of Pettibone Road in Solon will include bike lanes.

Opponents of Monday's Euclid rezoning intend to seek a referendum on the issue for the November ballot.

Community arts activists have prepared issue31.org, a web site promoting the countywide economic development and arts levy.

Thirteen local real estate firms have expressed an interest in buying Shaker Square from KeyBank, who took ownership of the center in December.

The budget presented by President Bush to Congress includes $82.2 million for the Euclid Corridor project.

Euclid City Council, in a contentious meeting Monday night, approved a rezoning request that will permit the construction of a church-anchored community. Plans call for Providence Missionary Baptist Church to move from the Mount Pleasant neighborhood of Cleveland and for the construction of 110 homes. Opponents of the project say that the land was more valuable with its previous industrial zoning.

More stories on sporting facilities in the media: Sam Fulwood offers his opinion on Bert Wolstein's recent remarks; while the Gateway Economic Development Corp. has negotiated new agreements with the Indians and Cavaliers.

The Plain Dealer looks at the successes and struggles of the Hillcrest Council of Councils, a group of councilpersons from nine east-side communities.

Cleveland City Council is expected to approve the hiring of consultants to design an extension of an existing runway at Hopkins Airport, despite recent drops in the number of travellers.

The Partners Advocating Community Excellence organization is conducting a study to determine the feasibility of building a joint recreation center for the cities of Lyndhurst, Richmond Heights, and South Euclid.

Developer Bert Wolstein, who in November announced plans to bring a Major League Soccer team to Northeast Ohio, says he will not follow through unless Cuyahoga or Summit Counties builds a stadium for the team.

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