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Westlake City Council passed a package of ordinances that advance the construction of American Greetings' planned headquarters building at Crocker Park. The approved legislation includes a 30-year TIF, a 15-year income tax credit, issuance of additional bonds to fund public improvements, and authorization for the mayor to sign a development agreement. Stark Enterprises also plans to build more apartments and retail space at Crocker Park. The new construction will be supported by bonds from the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority.

With the completion of the Ernst & Young Tower at the Flats east bank project, Crain's Cleveland Business looked at the potential for more office tower construction in downtown Cleveland.

Developer Andrew Brickman of Abode changed his plans for redeveloping the Mandley-Vetrovsky Funeral Home property in Fairview Park, dropping his proposal for townhouses and proposing a new 60,000- to 80,000-square-foot office building. The concept requires approval from the Cleveland Metroparks, who control an easement on the property. A residential-to-office rezoning is also needed, which voters will decide in November.

The renovation of Victory Center (formerly the Victory Building and the Arts Building) in Midtown is scheduled to be finished this month. The 150,000 square-foot building at 7012 Euclid Avenue is being marketed to biomedical and technology companies. Meanwhile, the Ohio EPA declared that brownfield remediation was completed at the adjacent 2.16-acre 7000 Euclid Avenue site.

Work on the new Cuyahoga County headquarters building in downtown Cleveland began in early April with the start of demolition of the former P&H buildings at East 9th Street and Prospect Avenue. Demolition is scheduled to be finished by late June and the new building is slated to open by July 2014. The project's architect is striving for a subdued modernist design. The project is supported by $75.5 million in bonds from the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority.

Local developer David Lewanski's proposed Pinecrest development in Orange would replace a 76-acre residential area with retail, offices, and housing. If Village officials and voters approve a rezoning, it would add 390,500 square feet of upscale retail, 30,000 square feet of office space and 266 residential units (PDF) to an area near the Chagrin Highlands. Lewanski said he has acquired has long-term purchase options on most of the area's existing houses and that he will not seek development incentives for the project.

At a March 7 auction, Drury Hotels was the high bidder for the Cleveland Metropolitan School District headquarters building in downtown Cleveland. The $4.83 million bid was well below the anticipated $8.5 million price, but the school board voted 5-3 to accept the bid. The new hotel will offer about 180 rooms when it opens in 2015, and is one of a number of proposed downtown hotels. The School District may move its offices into the former Eaton headquarters building on Superior Avenue.

Eaton Corp. moved about 700 employees into its new 53-acre campus in the Beachwood portion of the Chagrin Highlands. Its 600,000-square-foot building cost an estimated $170 million and replaces the company's former headquarters in downtown Cleveland. The City of Beachwood expects to gain $600,000 to $850,000 in annual payroll tax revenue.

At its January 22 meeting, Cuyahoga County Council unanimously voted to sell the Ameritrust complex to the Geis Cos. and to lease a to-be-constructed headquarters building from the company. The Geis Cos. formally took control of the property this week. A Plain Dealer editorial said that "county officials must provide thorough oversight" of the project. Council members pledged to closely monitor spending on the new building, and issued an RFQ for a consultant to oversee construction. The County's decision may force Optima Ventures to reconsider its plans for the Huntington Building.

In December, Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald recommended a proposal from the Geis Cos. for the Ameritrust complex and new county offices in downtown Cleveland. Under the proposal, Geis would purchase the buildings for $27 million and construct a new eight-story county administration building at the corner of East 9th Street and Prospect Avenue. Geis intends to redevelop the the 28-story tower as high-end apartments, the Cleveland Trust rotunda as retail or another public use, and the Swetland Building as apartments and offices.

Cuyahoga County Council heard presentations and discussed the proposal at meetings on December 11, January 2, January 8, and January 15. The recommended agreement would allow the County to own its offices at the end of a 26-year lease, and received the highest score of the nine submitted proposals. Optima Ventures challenged the scoring calculations and offered a revised offer, while the County's real estate consultant said that Optima's numbers were in error.

Michelle Jarboe McFee of The Plain Dealer said that the agreement "could revive a stricken downtown Cleveland intersection," while Stan Bullard and Jay Miller of Crain's Cleveland Business noted that its "impact on the office market, statistically speaking, would be nil at best." Editorials in The Plain Dealer said that the deal has "many appealing elements" and urged County Council to "start asking tough questions about the proposed deal."

Update: Cleveland Magazine's Erick Trickey asked four questions about the agreement.

American Greetings announced that it would postpone construction of its new headquarters at Crocker Park in Westlake because of the Weiss family's offer to take the company private. Construction had been scheduled to start in early 2013, and the company "believes that the delay will be short". Westlake officials were prepared to issue up to $60 million in bonds to support the project, but currently have little to do.

Civil engineering consultants for the City of Strongsville are updating plans for the second phase of the Foltz Parkway extension project. The project would open about 137 acres in the Strongsville Business and Technology Park for development.

Update: ODOT awarded a $215,000 grant to the City for the extension project.

Mayor Jackson of Cleveland proposed selecting a single development team to implement the City's lakefront development plan. He intends to work with a seven-member advisory committee to draft a request for proposals and review the responses. A Plain Dealer editorial said it "could mark a turning point in Cleveland's relationship with its greatest natural treasure, Lake Erie." Meanwhile, Cleveland City Council authorized Geis Companies to begin planning a 20-acre waterfront office park.

Cuyahoga County released a list of the 31 bidders who responded to the County's property consolidation RFP, but did not share any details. County officials hope to reach deals with bidders by the end of the year.

The revised preliminary development plan for the new American Greetings headquarters building at Crocker Park was approved, first by the Westlake Planning Commission and then by Westlake City Council. The company also will soon receive the second half of $2.5 million state grant.

Cleveland leaders are considering a development agreement with Geis Companies for a proposed waterfront office park near Burke Lakefront Airport. The company would receive a one-year lease on the 20-acre site. A Plain Dealer editorial called it "significant and exciting" news that "could be the start of something truly grand," while Alec Pacella of SB Equities listed six things to consider about the plan.

Update: City officials said that the nearby USS Cod will continue to have a place on the lakefront.

Hemingway Development reached an agreement to purchase the building at 6555 Carnegie Avenue (PDF) in Cleveland. The 64,000-square-foot building will become the third phase of the MidTown Tech Park office development.

Cuyahoga County officially launched its property consolidation effort, offering 13 properties for sale and requesting proposals for new office and storage space. The buildings for sale include the County Administration Building, the Ameritrust complex, and the former Juvenile Justice Center. They are being presented to potential purchasers at a series of open houses. The County is seeking 225,000 square feet of downtown office space and 200,000 square feet of storage space. County officials intend to discuss the proposals in private, but County Executive FitzGerald pledged to make public all proposals before presenting them to County Council. County leaders are also considering a real-estate consulting contract.

Erick Trickey of Cleveland Magazine wrote about the lack of transparency and compared the process to old county government practices. A Plain Dealer called it "a huge opportunity for the county to secure its own bottom line and to boost downtown."

Update WKSU's Kevin Niedermier explored how the building sales could affect downtown Cleveland.

Voters in Solon could see two zoning issues on the November ballot. One would modify permitted uses in the city's C-5 industrial district, while the other would allow pet stores in the city's C-2 commercial district. Voters in Fairview Park may decide a rezoning issue for Journey Church on Lorain Road.

Update: Westlake voters may decide a rezoning issue for a portion of the Promenade shopping center.

American Greetings unveiled preliminary designs for its planned new headquarters at Crocker Park in Westlake. The renderings show a five-story, 650,000-square-foot building. The company plans to break ground in early 2013 and complete construction in mid-2014.

The lakefront plan recently adopted by the City of Cleveland includes a floating office harbor west of Burke Lakefront Airport. Planners hope it can attract innovative companies and talent.

Update: WKSU reported on LeanDog's floating office in the former Hornblower's restaurant.

Cuyahoga County selected CBRE Group Inc. to market up to 22 buildings, evaluate potential new office space, and negotiate sales or leases. The process may begin next month.

The K&D Group of Willoughby recently signed a contract to buy the vacant 1717 East 9th Building and its 550-space parking garage from Sovereign Partners. K&D plans to convert the former East Ohio Building into a 223-unit apartment building. The company has one year to complete its purchase of the downtown office tower.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorial backs the plans.

Beachwood City Council approved a rezoning for apartments on the current site of the Commerce Park I, II, and III office buildings.

E-books distributor OverDrive last week broke ground on its new $10 million headquarters building in Garfield Heights. The company expects to complete construction of the 95,000-square-foot building in September.

Inside Business described how Tremco used green building techniques in a renovation of its headquarters building on Green Road in Beachwood. The company is seeking LEED Gold certification for the project.

Update: Fresh Water has more details.

Beachwood's Planning and Zoning Commission recommended approval of a proposed commercial-to-residential rezoning of eight acres at Chagrin Boulevard and Green Road. The planned apartment complex is part of a larger effort to redevelop the Commerce Park area.

Superior Technology Partners of Columbus hopes to build a data center on a 2.25-acre portion of a 14-acre City-owned property on Chester Avenue. The Midtown site was previously slated for a state psychiatric hospital.

Beachwood leaders are considering a proposal to build a 340-unit apartment building on the site of the three Commerce Park office buildings at Chagrin Boulevard and Green Road. City Council recently referred the project to the Planning and Zoning Commission. The buildings were purchased in September for $4.1 million, and a study prepared for the City last year recommended reinvestment in the area. Meanwhile, a different developer is preparing plans for a 132-unit luxury apartment building near Beachwood Place.

The LoConti family, longtime owners of the Cleveland Agora, recently donated the office and entertainment complex to MidTown Cleveland. MidTown and Hemingway Development plan to redevelop its 54,000-square-foot office portion and restore the Agora Theatre.

A real estate study conducted for Cuyahoga County leaders provided recommendations for each property in the county portfolio, and divided them into opportunities for investment, holding, or divestment. The study (PowerPoint) recommended the sale of the Ameritrust complex, the County Administration Building, and the former Juvenile Justice Center, among other structures. A Plain Dealer editorial says that the "upshot of all this is that the county may soon become an important player in the local real estate market."

The Playhouse Square Foundation agreed to sell the Hanna Building Annex on East 14th Street to the K&D Group of Willoughby. The company plans to convert the office building to 102 apartments. Work may begin in June.

Westlake City Council approved a 30-year tax abatement for the planned American Greetings headquarters at Crocker Park. The abatement will begin in 2014, when the new offices are expected to open.

Insurance company AmTrust Financial Services announced that it will bring its offices to downtown Cleveland. The company plans to relocate 245 jobs from Seven Hills and create up to 800 new jobs over three years. AmTrust will make at least $20 million in upgrades to the Key Center tower at Superior Avenue and East 9th Street. It purchased the building in July for $7.1 million.

Fresh Water describes recent investments in Cleveland's Health-Tech Corridor and Midtown Tech Park.

Funding for the planned new American Greetings headquarters at Crocker Park in Westlake will come from several sources. The Cleveland International Fund intends to raise $65 million for the project, and the state will provide a $15 million loan and a $2.5 million grant. State officials also awarded a $1 million grant to the City for associated road improvements.

The Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority dedicated (PDF) its new headquarters and the second phase of its Heritage View Homes in Kinsman. The new construction adds 40 apartment units and 17 single-family houses to the 81 townhouse units opened last year.

In its attempt to keep American Greetings from leaving, the City of Brooklyn offered the company up to $10 million in incentives.

At its annual meeting on Thursday, MidTown Cleveland revealed plans for the second phase of the Midtown Tech Park. The plans include renovating a vacant 40,000-square-foot building located across Euclid Avenue from phase one.

American Greetings will partner with Cuyahoga County and City of Brooklyn to bring new jobs to its Brooklyn offices when it moves its headquarters to Westlake. The company is willing to donate or make available some or all of the 1 million square feet for use by nonprofit groups. The Greater Cleveland Film Commission is interested in converting it to a movie studio.

On Monday, developers unveiled the new $21 million MidTown Tech Park in the Health-Tech Corridor along Euclid Avenue. Cleveland Economic Development Director Tracey Nichols described the 128,000-square-foot building as post-incubator space.

American Greetings notified its employees that it will move its headquarters from Brooklyn to Westlake in 2014. The company plans to build a a 700,000-square-foot complex on a 13-acre site at the southern end of Crocker Park, and is in discussions with the City of Westlake and the Westlake City Schools about a 30-year tax increment financing package. The $100 million development will require about $41 million in infrastructure improvements. Mayor Balbier of Brooklyn said his city made every effort to keep American Greetings, but "can't compete with a wealthy suburb like Westlake."

Update: a Morning Journal editorial said it "should make the entire West Shore region of western Cuyahoga and eastern Lorain counties even more appealing". Roldo Bartimole called it a "big theft of public dollars".

The Louis Stokes Cleveland Veterans Affairs Medical Center dedicated its new inpatient bed tower, homeless veterans domiciliary, and administration building at its Wade Park campus in Cleveland on Monday. The VA is concurrently winding down operations at its Brecksville campus.

The City of University Heights will establish a blue-ribbon economic development committee. Mayor Infeld will appoint its members by June 15. The City of Shaker Heights hopes to create a high-end office corridor along Warrensville Road, and hired Allegro Realty Advisors to develop economic development strategies.

The Plain Dealer's Brent Larkin wrote about problems with high office vacancy rates along downtown Cleveland's East 9th Street corridor.

American Greetings leaders announced on Monday that the company will keep its headquarters in Northeast Ohio, but added that they have not decided on a location in the area. The company is considering its current location in Brooklyn and four other sites in suburban Cuyahoga County. Ohio legislators passed a tax incentive aimed at keeping the company in the state, and Governor Kasich signed the bill (PDF) on Monday. A Plain Dealer editorial called it "a win for the home team."

Update: Ed FitzGerald does not want to encourage the company to relocate from one Cuyahoga County city to another, and will not offer any financial incentives.

The 83-acre Bluestone Business Park in Euclid is ready for new businesses. Demolition and brownfield remediation of the former PMX Industries/Chase Brass site was completed last year. Mayor Cervenik said that it eventually could include about 1 million square feet of industrial and office space with 1,000 jobs.

The General Services Administration unveiled the design of the new facade for the Anthony J. Celebrezze Federal Building in downtown Cleveland. The new aluminum and glass skin, designed by architect Charles Young of Interactive Design Eight Architects in Chicago, is expected to reduce the building's annual energy costs by 17%. The Plain Dealer's Steven Litt said that the "project could be a bellwether for skylines across the country, especially for skyscrapers that fall somewhere below the level of landmarks worthy of preservation in pristine condition." Blair Kamin of the Chicago Tribune said that the "building stands to be transformed from a muscle-bound but middling work of mid-20th Century modernism into something delicate, diaphanous and endearing to the passerby."

The General Services Administration plans to replace the roof of the Anthony J. Celebrezze Federal Building in downtown Cleveland and to wrap the entire building with a new glass facade. Steven Litt described the work as "a fascinating case in which government is trying to balance two positive goals: historic preservation and energy conservation." The $121 million project is being funded by the federal stimulus program.

The Wolstein Group and Fairmount Properties closed on their financing for the first phase of the Flats east bank development. Construction of the stalled $275 million project is expected to resume this week. It is supported by a complex package (PDF) of private and public financing and is scheduled to open in spring 2013.

Cleveland State University's trustees voted to proceed with plans for the Middough Building at Playhouse Square. The university's theater and visual arts departments will occupy several floors in the building, which the Playhouse Square Foundation will purchase from Middough. The company will remain in the building.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development will provide $32 million in loan guarantees for the planned Flats east bank project in Cleveland. The development is backed by private and public funding sources, including bonds from the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority. Developers hope to close on their financing before the end of the year.

American Greetings revealed that company officials are considering seven sites for its corporate headquarters. The locations include the current headquarters in Brooklyn, four other suburban Cuyahoga County sites, and two locations in the Chicago area. The company wants to make a decision by the end of February.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorials says that retaining the company should be a priority for Greater Cleveland.

Local real estate professionals speculate that American Greetings' exploration of a headquarters relocation may be motivated by the condition of its current facilities more than the income tax issues raised by the company. American Greetings officials say they have not reached a decision and that they will make an announcement this fall.

Developer John Ferchill wants to build an "innovation center campus" on the site of the current Cleveland Third District police station at Chester Avenue and East 107th Street. The $98.6 million office and research project succeeds his unrealized plans for the MidTown Technology Center on Euclid Avenue.

Update: MedCity News provides some analysis.

NASA's Glenn Research Center will break ground for its new Centralized Office Building on Friday. The LEED silver building is the centerpiece of the campus master plan. NASA Chief Technologist Robert Braun said that Glenn's future is bright.

Update: the News Sun and West Life have additional information.

Construction of the Cleveland Clinic's $15 million Independence Technology Center expansion could begin as early as next month.

The State of Ohio awarded a $3.5 million grant to the MidTown Tech Park, a 128,500-square-foot office, laboratory, and research project in the Cleveland Health-Tech Corridor. Developers intend to break ground in November for the $22 million development, formerly known as the Euclid Tech Center. The project was one of 14 sites that received grants from the state's Job Ready Sites program.

The historic East Ohio Gas Building on East 6th Street in downtown Cleveland will be renovated as offices for the Calfee, Halter & Griswold law firm. The $30 million project includes the construction of a 190-space parking garage on the surface lot behind the 1916 building. The building was purchased at auction for $1.3 million in 2009. Earlier proposals for the building called for redeveloping it as condominiums or a hotel.

A real estate broker proposed redeveloping the former Ameritrust complex in downtown Cleveland for use as Cuyahoga County government offices. The County Commissioners said that the idea is impractical and intend to continue with plans to sell the buildings.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorial encourages the commissioners to leave the decision to the new county government that will take office in January.

Strongsville officials are marketing a 169-acre property at the end of Foltz Parkway in the Strongsville Business and Technology Park. Another 300-acre site is adjacent to the city-owned property. The area is the largest greenfield site in Cuyahoga County.

Eaton broke ground on its new headquarters campus at the Chagrin Highlands in Beachwood. The Jacobs Group intends to begin work at the site next week.

Hemingway Development wants to redevelop the former Warner & Swasey complex at Carnegie Avenue and East 55th Street in Cleveland as offices, labs, and warehousing or manufacturing space. The buildings have been vacant since 1985 and are currently owned by the City of Cleveland. City officials hope to obtain state funding for brownfield remediation at the site.

The Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority's new headquarters building is under construction at East 80th Street and Kinsman Avenue in Cleveland's Forgotten Triangle. The offices are scheduled to open in summer 2011.

The new Cleveland Health-Tech Corridor is an effort to redevelop Euclid Avenue in Cleveland by leveraging the area's strengths in the biomedical, health care, and high-tech industries.

Avon City Council may soon approve the proposed tax increment financing district for the area around the planned I-90 interchange at Nagel Road.

The Berea Municipal Planning Commission approved the West Bagley Road Commercial District, a new zoning classification. The district's permitted uses include office, retail, and adult-oriented businesses.

Update: Berea City Council also approved the rezoning.

The Jacobs Group filed initial site plans for Eaton's planned campus in the Beachwood portion of the Chagrin Highlands. In addition to the 10-story headquarters building, the plans call for a five-story parking garage and a 59,000-square-foot fitness center.

Update: the Plain Dealer published more information about the proposal.

Now that they have reached purchase agreements for most of the properties for the planned Medical Mart, the Cuyahoga County Commissioners are expected to reject proposals for relocating the county offices. The new county government will decide whether or not to leave the County Administration Building on Lakeside Avenue.

The City of Strongsville is seeking approval from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers for the second phase of the Foltz Parkway extension project. It involves filling streams and wetlands for a planned expansion of the Strongsville Business & Technology Park.

Eaton shared a rendering of the headquarters building for its planned 53-acre campus at the Chagrin Highlands in Beachwood. The company plans to begin building the 470,000-square-foot structure in early 2011.

The Cleveland Landmarks Commission today approved designs for the hotel and office tower that is part of the Flats east bank development. Renderings and floor plans are available at the meeting agenda.

American Greetings has started to consider relocating its corporate headquarters from its Brooklyn campus. A corporate spokesperson said that the company is looking at all of its options, including those outside of Northeast Ohio. The company is studying the relocation because Brooklyn voters approved a 0.5% income tax increase last May.

Update: Governor Strickland and other state officials met with American Greetings leaders to encourage them to stay in Greater Cleveland. Mayor Balbier of Brooklyn said he will fight to keep the company in town.

The Plain Dealer toured the historic Cleveland Trust rotunda at Euclid Avenue and East 9th Street. Cuyahoga County leaders intend to accept bids for the building and the rest of the Ameritrust complex this winter.

The Euclid Tech Center is a proposed 98,000-square-foot office/research & development building at Euclid Avenue and East 69th Street in Cleveland. Its developers are seeking financial assistance from the City and State to build the $20 million project.

The exterior renovation of the Bailey Building in downtown Lakewood began last week. The work is scheduled to finish in the spring.

Update: the Lakewood Observer and Sun Post-Herald have more details.

Cleveland City Council approved a financial package for the first phase of the Flats east bank development. The incentives include a $30 million loan, a revised TIF agreement, more bonds, and changes to earlier loan agreements.

Eaton Corp. closed on its purchase of 53 acres in the Beachwood portion of the Chagrin Highlands for its new headquarters campus. The price was not revealed.

Update: the Ohio Treasurer's Office issued $10 million in bonds for the project.

A $16 million gift from the Mandel family will fund the move of the Jewish Community Federation from downtown Cleveland to Beachwood.

State and local governments committed $54 million in new public loans and grants for the stalled Flats east bank project, which may enable developers (PDF) to resume construction of a downsized first phase next spring. Formerly a $500 million project, the $270 million development now includes a 450,000-square-foot office tower, a 150-room hotel, a 3-acre riverfront beach, and 14 acres of greenspace.

Update: two Plain Dealer reporters discussed the announcement, and an editorial said it "seems like a win-win".

The owners of the Bailey Building in downtown Lakewood plan to remove its 1960s concrete facade to reveal the original 1920s brick building.

The City of Brecksville is ready to enter into an agreement with the developers who will be managing the redevelopment of the Brecksville VA hospital campus.

Cuyahoga County received six proposals for relocating its offices. The potential move is a fallback plan, in the event that negotiations for the preferred site for the Medical Mart fall through.

Cuyahoga County officials say that negotiations for the purchase of the office building at 113 St. Clair have stalled. The County wants the downtown property for the planned Medical Mart. If an agreement isn't reached next month, the County will instead utilize the site of its current administration building at Lakeside Avenue and Ontario Street. The County recently began a formal search for new office space.

The multi-year renovation of the Terminal Tower is nearing completion, and the Plain Dealer published a large infographic about the history and restoration of the skyscraper, plus current and historic photographs. The building will turn 80 next year.

Developer Lou Frangos said he can revive the suspended redevelopment of the Ameritrust complex. He owns a stake in a property below a building in the downtown Cleveland complex.

Construction of an office building and parking garage to accompany the new Veterans Affairs Medical Center in University Circle may begin later this month, if the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority issues bonds to help fund the project.

Update: the Port Authority approved up to $115 million in bonds for the project.

The K&D Group dropped its plans to redevelop the Ameritrust complex, citing issues with prospective tenants. Last fall, Cuyahoga County extended the developer's deadline for completing the purchase, but K&D was unable to make the project work. The County intends to put the buildings at East 9th Street and Euclid Avenue on the market later this year or next year.

The board of the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority unanimously voted to issue up to $150 million in bonds to enable the move of Eaton Corp. from downtown Cleveland to Beachwood.

Eaton Corp. shared initial plans for its new headquarters at a Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority meeting yesterday. The plans include a 470,000-square-foot headquarters building and 220,400-square-foot parking garage. Eaton wants the Port Authority to agree to a complicated financing deal that would enable the company to move from downtown Cleveland to a 53-acre campus in the Beachwood portion of the Chagrin Highlands.

The owners of two office towers on East 9th Street plan to renovate the downtown buildings. The investor group that owns the Schofield Building (also known as the Euclid Ninth Tower) intends to remove the building's 1960s facade and reveal its original face. They hope to obtain historic preservation tax credits and restore it as a boutique hotel and apartments. Meanwhile, Sovereign Partners LLC of New York plans to completely renovate the East Ohio Building at East 9th Street and Superior Avenue. Sovereign purchased the skyscraper in 2006.

Local stakeholders differ in their visions for the future of the Euclid Avenue corridor in Cleveland's Midtown neighborhood. MidTown Cleveland Inc.'s master plan calls for redeveloping the area as a technology and health district, yet current development proposals are more heavily institutional and residential. The City of Cleveland is promoting the proposed Midtown Technology Center site as a location for a new state psychiatric hospital. MidTown Cleveland is not opposing the hospital concept, but objects to the Cleveland Housing Networks plans to build permanent supportive housing and Pirhl's proposed senior housing project. Carole Cohen considers the flexibility of master plans.

Beachwood officials intend to make the Commerce Park area more attractive to biomedical businesses.

Hemingway Development purchased the St. Jude Parish property in Warrensville Heights from the Diocese of Cleveland for $2 million. They plan to redevelop it as Hemingway at Richmond, an office park with a retail component.

Beachwood City Council, Eaton Corp., and two school districts agreed to a 30-year tax increment financing package for the company's planned new headquarters in the Chagrin Highlands. The State of Ohio has already committed $71 million in tax breaks and loans to facilitate the company's move from downtown Cleveland.

Update: The Plain Dealer reports that the combined incentives are worth more than $90 million.

Cutbacks by banks and financial firms could increase the vacancy rate for downtown Cleveland offices and eliminate the market for proposed new office towers.

Advertising agency Wyse will be the anchor tenant in the K&D Group's redevelopment of the 668 Euclid building in downtown Cleveland. The company signed a 10-year lease for 25,000 square feet on the building's ground floor. The K&D Group is also pursuing nontraditional financing for its planned redevelopment of the nearby Ameritrust complex, including investments from labor union pension funds.

Midwest Real Estate News spoke with four Greater Cleveland real estate professionals about the local commercial real estate market.

The renovation of the Baker Electric Building on Euclid Avenue in Midtown has revealed many historic elements that had been obscured. The $7.1 million project already has attracted a half-dozen tenants.

The Jacobs Group's plans for the 37-acre site at I-77 and Royalton Road in Brecksville include dividing it into three smaller properties.

Representatives of the Jacobs Group discussed the company's plans for the southwest quadrant of the interchange at I-77 and Royalton Road with the Brecksville Planning Commission. The company had previously proposed developing the site as a mixed-use development called the Arborlands.

While it was still considering a Flats east bank site for its new headquarters, Eaton requested a list of changes to neighboring properties, some of which would have impacted port activities. Crain's Cleveland Business noted that it's unclear whether the requests were make-or-break issues or whether Eaton was simply trying to get as much as possible.

A protracted credit crunch could force delays or cancellations of proposed commercial developments in and around Cleveland, including downtown office towers, suburban retail developments, and mixed-use projects.

Plans have bogged down for a $25 million retail/office complex at Tuxedo Avenue and Granger Road in Brooklyn Heights, but Mayor Procuk said that the "deal is not dead in the water."

Eaton is reluctant to move to the Flats because the nine acre site on the east bank is too small for the campus the company intends to build. Mayor Jackson said that the City did all it could to keep the company's headquarters in downtown Cleveland, but a Plain Dealer analysis notes that Jackson's emphasis on regionalism left him with little room to protest a move to Beachwood. The City and Port Authority are looking at other development options for the Waterfront loop property.

Construction of the Hillcrest Hospital expansion in Mayfield Heights is underway. The work is scheduled to be finished in 2010. In Middleburg Heights, plans were announced for a new 21,100 square foot medical office building next to the Big Creek Surgery Center on Bagley Road.

In a statement (PDF) released today, Eaton Corp. revealed that a location in the Chagrin Highlands is the leading candidate for the company's new headquarters. A site in the Flats east bank development was previously thought to be the most likely location. Mayor Jackson said that while he is disappointed, he respects the decision.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorial says that Cleveland leaders must attempt to keep the company downtown. WKSU's Kevin Niedermier spoke with Frank Jackson about the news.

The new offices of Douglass & Associates on Grayton Road in Cleveland were designed to attain LEED gold certification.

A local development group is trying to revive interest in plans for the Courthouse Plaza high-rise in downtown Cleveland. The tower was first proposed in 1999, but there has been little news since backer Larry Dolan pulled out in 2001.

The developers of the proposed retail and office project and at Tuxedo Avenue and Granger Road in Brooklyn Heights have modified their plans to include two office buildings instead of one. They are still seeking tenants for the development.

Westlake Reed Leskosky unveiled designs for a 13 story office building at the Ameritrust complex in downtown Cleveland. The glassy tower would sit directly south of the Cleveland Trust Tower. The K&D Group is trying to have the Marcel Breuer-designed tower added to the National Register of Historic Places, and is seeking federal and state historic tax credits.

A 140 room hotel has been proposed for a property near the I-480 interchange at Great Northern Boulevard in North Olmsted. The 13.59 acre site is currently zoned for office development, and would require a rezoning to proceed.

The historic May Company building on Public Square in Cleveland will be redeveloped as retail and residential space. The ground floor is slated to house a restaurant and a nightclub, and the upper stories will be renovated as residences and possibly a small hotel. An earlier renovation attempt called for converting it into the Public Square Tech Center.

The Richard E. Jacobs Group purchased an 89 acre property near the planned I-90 interchange at Nagel Road in Avon. Earlier this year, the property was rezoned for commercial development. The company is also pursuing a purchase and rezoning of a neighboring 110 acre site.

The City of Rocky River maintains a spreadsheet of vacant office, warehouse, and commercial properties that are for sale or lease. It is available on the City's website.

NASA Glenn officials are reviewing 11 proposals for a new 90,000 square foot central office building. They expect to award the design contract for the $28 million building by August. It's scheduled to open in early 2012. The construction is part of a $150 million redesign of the NASA campus.

A recently-demolished building at the Cleveland Technology Center on Rockwell Avenue will temporarily be replaced by a surface parking lot. Matrix Realty Group plans to build a 180,000 square foot building on the site, and must complete construction by 2009 in order to receive the full amount of a 2006 grant from the Job Ready Sites Program.

The Jacobs Group and Hines Interests of Houston yesterday announced plans for a 21 story office tower on the parking lot facing the west side of Public Square. Public Square Tower is a $180 million project that would feature 500,000 square feet of office space. Construction could start next year. Improvising Schema is critical of Gensler's design for the tower, calling it "another impersonal glass box".

The June issue of Cleveland Magazine includes an extensive look at the decisions surrounding Cuyahoga County's purchase and eventual sale of the Ameritrust complex in downtown Cleveland.

Ernst & Young confirmed that it will move to a new office tower in the Flats east bank development. The 21 story building will be known as Ernst & Young Tower. A Plain Dealer editorial says that this "means that the mammoth task of revitalizing the Flats" east bank "is really going to happen." Developers also unveiled new conceptual images of the planned mixed-use project, and announced that they secured $4 million from HUD for an unidentified supermarket in the development. Half of the award is a grant, and the other half is a loan.

With the ongoing renovation of the Terminal Tower at its halfway point, the Plain Dealer reported on the work and highlighted a 1928 movie of its construction that was acquired by Cleveland State University in 2004 and added to the Cleveland Union Terminal Collection.

Accounting firm Ernst & Young plans to move its downtown Cleveland office from the Huntington Building to a new office tower in the Flats east bank development. The company's 1,200 employees could occupy over 150,000 square feet in the planned 20 to 21 story building. In February, law firm Tucker Ellis & West announced plans to move to the same tower.

Meanwhile, the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority's Regional Economic Advancement Committee tabled a decision on altering the project's development agreement so that members would have time to study the requested changes. One of the proposed changes is lowering the prevailing-wage requirements.

Demolition of the remaining structures on the Flats east bank began today.

The Village of Boston Heights settled a lawsuit with the developers seeking to build on the former Boston Heights Country Club site. The settlement (PDF) allows the developers to construct retail and office space on 100 acres of the 160 acre property.

Avon City Council recently approved two rezoning requests for land near the planned I-90 interchange at Nagel Road. An 18 acre site at Jaycox and Chester Roads was rezoned to permit commercial development, and a 32 acre site at Nagel Road and I-90 was rezoned from residential to general business. City Council tabled two other rezoning requests for properties at Center and Detroit Roads that are involved in a legal battle.

Owners of properties near the I-77 interchange at Route 82 had mixed reactions to Mayor Alai's proposal for rezoning the area. Broadview Heights voters will have the opportunity to vote on two rezoning issues in November.

GreenCityBlueLake examined the green renovation of the historic Baker Electric Building on Euclid Avenue in Midtown.

The Cuyahoga County Commissioners were expected to approve the K&D Group's bid to purchase the Ameritrust complex at their meeting this morning.

Update: the Commissioners accepted the bid.

The Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority may have reached an agreement to sell 8.8 acres in the Flats to developer Scott Wolstein for $11.44 million. A spokesperson for Wolstein, however, cautioned that the negotiations remain complicated. Eaton Corporation is interested in developing the site in the planned Flats east bank development for its headquarters.

Update: the Plain Dealer finds the news encouraging.

For the second time, the K&D Group was the sole bidder for the Ameritrust complex in downtown Cleveland. The bid was for the $35 million minimum set by Cuyahoga County. The developer's plans are similar to its earlier proposal, with a mix of hotel, residential, and office uses in renovated and new space. The company hired the firm of Westlake Reed Leskosky to design the proposed new office tower at Prospect Avenue and East 9th Street. Channel 3 has images of the proposal.

In order to make the Cleveland Trust Tower more attractive to prospective developers, Cuyahoga County will invest up to $4 million in additional asbestos abatement.

In a talk at the City Club on Friday, Cuyahoga County Commissioner Peter Lawson Jones spoke about the reopening of bids for the purchase of the County-owned Ameritrust complex and about the recent Medical Mart agreement. He revealed that the Commissioners are considering a third potential location for the Medical Mart and convention center, a lakefront site west of Cleveland Browns Stadium. Download the speech (MP3, 55.3 MB).

The Cuyahoga County Commissioners officially rejected the K&D Group's bid to purchase the Ameritrust complex today. A Plain Dealer editorial said they had no choice but to reject the offer. The K&D Group may submit a second attempt when bidding is reopened.

Voters in Broadview Heights will decide a rezoning issue on Tuesday. The owners of three properties on Cherry Hill Lane want a portion of their properties rezoned from office to single-family residential.

The Cuyahoga County Commissioners are expected to reject the K&D Group's bid to purchase the Ameritrust Complex, because the company proposed financing the deal through a $15 million loan from the County. The Commissioners will reopen bidding for the property.

Update: WCPN has more details.

The K&D Group proposed privately financing $20 million of the $35 million it bid to purchase the Ameritrust complex from Cuyahoga County, and asked the county for a mortgage on the remaining $15 million. County Commissioners are considering the request.

Law firm Tucker Ellis & West yesterday became the first office tenants to announce a move to the planned Flats east bank development. The firm reached an agreement to lease 100,000 square feet of a 525,000 square foot tower to be built on a parking lot at West 10th Street and Main Avenue.

Yesterday, the Plain Dealer confirmed that Eaton Corporation is interested in building a new corporate campus on 8.5 acres in the Flats along the Waterfront Line loop. The property is owned by the Port Authority, and Scott Wolstein owns an option to purchase the land for his planned Flats east bank development.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorial says that Eaton's move to the Flats would be good for Cleveland.

Cleveland officials proposed offering $5.1 million in loans to the K&D Group for the redevelopment of the 668 Euclid complex, in addition to other incentives. Cleveland City Council may vote on the proposal as early as Monday.

Update: City Council unanimously approved the loan.

Doug Price of The K&D Group said that the rendering of a proposed office tower at the Ameritrust complex in downtown Cleveland was "a quick concept to get something in the paper". He added that the building will not resemble the rendering, and that he would like a local architect to design the structure.

Update: the news was a surprise to architect Robert Corna.

Ernst & Young and Eaton are both thinking about building new offices in Scott Wolstein's Flats east bank development. This angered Bob Stark, who is planning a large Warehouse District development. Stark asserts that a shift of office tenants to the Flats project would damage downtown.

Update: Stark is reassessing his Warehouse District plans.

The planned construction of an I-90 interchange at Nagel Road in Avon prompted rezoning requests from developers wanting to build on surrounding properties. The Avon Planning Commission heard requests to rezone 120 nearby acres for retail space and medical offices.

Cuyahoga County officials unsealed bids today for the Ameritrust complex at Euclid Avenue and East 9th Street. Although they were expecting several bids (PDF), the only package was a $35 million bid from the K&D Group of Willoughby. The company's plans call for converting the Cleveland Trust Tower to a 170 room hotel and 200 residential units. They also want to construct a new 200,000 square foot office tower at Prospect Avenue and East 9th Street and build additional parking and residential space.

Update: the Plain Dealer also reported on the bid and reactions to the news.

The K&D Group's plans for renovating the former Atrium Office Plaza on lower Euclid Avenue include the demolition of the adjacent former Continental Savings headquarters building.

A 25,600 square foot medical office building is planned for a 12.4 acre site on Engle Road in Middleburg Heights. Construction is scheduled to begin in February.

Cuyahoga County officials expect to receive as many as five bids on the Cleveland Trust Tower by their January 16 deadline. The County has spent $5.9 million on asbestos removal and architectural design for the tower.

In response to feedback from Village Council and residents, developers revised the plans for the proposed retail and office project at Granger Road and Tuxedo Avenue in Brooklyn Heights.

A rezoning issue for a 3.5 acre undeveloped property on Mastick Road may appear on the March ballot in Fairview Park. If City Council approves the measure, residents will have the opportunity to vote on the proposed residential to office rezoning.

Developers of the Ahek and LaPine properties at I-77 and Route 82 hope to have a development proposal ready early next year. The 40 acre site was recently rezoned by Broadview Heights voters.

Supporters of Camp Cheerful in Strongsville are opposed to a proposed rezoning to permit construction of a hotel on an adjacent site. They say that it would destroy the natural buffer around the camp.

Cuyahoga County is preparing to accept bids on the Ameritrust complex at Euclid Avenue and East 9th Street. The County Commissioners will sell the property if they are able to recoup their $35 million investment. Last week, architect Jane Weinzapfel spoke in favor of preserving the Breuer Tower, and yesterday, Steven Litt mentioned that "the tower has been damaged irreparably" by workers performing asbestos abatement.

Financial concerns and competing priorities have led the Cuyahoga County Commissioners to reconsider their plans for a new county administration building at East 9th Street and Euclid Avenue. If they can break even, they may sell the former Ameritrust complex to a private developer. The National Trust for Historic Preservation recently asked the Commissioners to investigate the sale of the Cleveland Trust Tower to "a preservation-sensitive developer".

The federal General Services Administration announced that it was not interested in using a proposed office building in the planned Flats east bank development, saying that it would be cheaper to retrofit the Anthony J. Celebrezze Federal Building on East 9th Street.

Developers hope to break ground in November on a building to support the expansion of the Louis Stokes Veterans Affairs Medical Center at University Circle. It will include 150,000 square feet of office space, a 122 bed residence for homeless veterans, and a 2,080 space parking garage.

Channel 3 reports that one of the sites being considered for the Cleveland Medical Mart is the Cleveland Trust Tower in downtown Cleveland. It could replace the plans to demolish the tower for a new Cuyahoga County administration building.

Construction of the first building on the Foltz Extension in the Strongsville Business & Technology Park has started. The CSC Group is building a new 48,500 square foot headquarters, which they plan to complete in about a year.

With downtown Cleveland's Class-A office vacancy rate (PDF) down to 11%, at least five large companies may be interested in building new downtown office buildings. One of the developers competing for tenants is Bob Stark, who is expanding the footprint of his planned Warehouse District development and expects to submit a preliminary development plan in the first quarter of 2008. He anticipates it will include 1.2 to 1.5 million square feet of office space, 1 million square feet of retail, 1 million square feet of residential space, and 1 to 2 million square feet in parking structures.

By a vote of 2-1, the Cuyahoga County Commissioners awarded the contract for asbestos removal and interior demolition of the Cleveland Trust Tower to Precision Environmental Co. of Independence.

An exhibit showcasing the entries in the "What Would you do with the Breuer Building?" design competition will open tomorrow as part of the Ingenuity festival. Steven Litt reviews the exhibit, and GreenCityBlueLake provides an overview and a gallery of the entries.

Two realtors are marketing 53 acres along Pine Crest Drive and Harvard Road in Orage to commercial and retail developers. The land is currently occupied by 27 homes, and most homeowners have signed a three year listing agreement. Voters would have to approve a rezoning issue for construction to occur.

Roldo Bartimole feels that the people who would profit from the construction of a medical mart and a new convention center should pay for it, and also laments the Cleveland City Planning Commission's decision on the Cleveland Trust Tower. The Plain Dealer and Channel 3 present additional details about the vote to demolish the downtown skyscraper.

This morning, the Cleveland City Planning Commission is again discussing Cuyahoga County's request to demolish the Cleveland Trust Tower. A Plain Dealer editorial once again urges the Planning Commission to approve the demolition, and Nathan C. Hoyt of Davis Brody Bond explains the architecture firm's proposal for reusing the tower.

(Update: the Planning Commission approved the demolition by a vote of 5-2, and Frank Jackson said they made the right decision. The Planning Commission did not authorize the demolition of the adjacent 1010 Euclid building.)

The Cuyahoga County Commissioners are creating a $13 million commercial redevelopment loan fund to promote the redevelopment of vacant commercial buildings. The program will be targeted at development in the City of Cleveland and its inner-ring suburbs.

(Update: a Department of Development press release presents more information.)

By a vote of 4-2, the Cleveland City Planning Commission refused to approve a demolition permit for the Cleveland Trust Tower. Today's New York Times includes an overview of the controversy surrounding the downtown skyscraper.

By a vote of 7-1, Broadview Heights City Council reversed its earlier decision and placed a rezoning issue for the Ahek property on the November ballot. If approved by voters, 60% of the 57.5 acre site at the northwest corner of I-77 and Route 82 would be rezoned from office laboratory to retail.

The Chatter column in this week's Free Times covers increased emissions from the Mittal Steel mill in Cleveland and the discussion about the proposed demolition of the Cleveland Trust Tower before the Cleveland City Planning Commission.The Planning Commission will take up the question again on Friday, and Plain Dealer architecture critic Steven Litt feels it's likely that the City will approve the demolition.

The Cuyahoga County Community Mental Health Board plans to build a $10-16 million headquarters building on Euclid Avenue in Midtown. The agency intends to move from their rented space on West 25th Street to the new 45,000 square foot building by fall 2008.

The Cleveland City Planning Commission decided on Friday that they need more details before they decide on Cuyahoga County's request to demolish the Cleveland Trust Tower.

National City Bank sold its branch near Euclid Avenue and Stokes Boulevard to University Circle Incorporated for $418,000. The bank will build a new branch south of its current location on land it will lease from UCI, which wants to redevelop the site of the existing building as part of a mixed-use multi-story gateway.

The Parma Sun Post profiles the efforts of southwest Cuyahoga County communities to increase their tax bases by promoting retail, office, and industrial development.

The Cleveland Clinic's purchase of office space on Science Park Drive in Beachwood may lead to another dispute with the Beachwood City Schools over whether the properties are exempt from property taxes.

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