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Cleveland west side News Archive

Four projects in Cleveland and one in Chagrin Falls received awards in the 10th round of the Ohio Historic Preservation Tax Credit program. In Cleveland, the Fairmont Creamery redevelopment received a $3.12 million tax credit; the final phase of the St. Luke's Hospital redevelopment received a $506,600 tax credit; and residential conversions of two adjacent buildings on Huron Avenue in downtown Cleveland, the Starr Gennett Building and 1220 Huron, received tax credits of $422,001 and $3.55 million, respectively. The Spillway project in Chagrin Falls received a $1.65 million tax credit.

A planning study identified (PDF, 13.5 MB) a site near the Ohio City Red Line rapid station for a potential transit-oriented development. The Market Plaza shopping center at West 25th Street and Lorain Avenue could be replaced by a mixed-use building with as many as 244 residential units. The Cleveland City Planning Commission approved the concept.

Enterprise Community Partners awarded a $40,000 grant to Burten, Bell, Carr for its Kinsman EcoDistricts and another $40,000 grant to the Detroit Shoreway Community Development Corporation to support its Cleveland EcoVillage. They also helped secure funding for the City of Cleveland's Office of Sustainability.

Some transportation advocates disagree about the City of Cleveland's plans for making West 65th Street a complete street. At GreenCityBlueLake, Marc Lefkowitz advocated for including bike lanes in the project.

Residential project roundup:

Update: a groundbreaking ceremony was held for Clifton Pointe II on July 24.

The site plan for proposed retail development at West 117th Street and Clifton Boulevard in Cleveland's Edgewater neighborhood shows a suburban-style shopping strip and includes the demolition of the former Fifth Church of Christ Scientist. A neighborhood group is seeking "good urban design promoting a pedestrian-friendly plan well suited for a historic district" and the rehabilitation of the historic church.

Update: the Sun News looked at a previous attempt to redevelop the church.

Update 2: the neighborhood group offered a plan for a park on the church site. The plan calls for retaining the portico and demolishing the remainder of the building.

Local housing news:

West side Cleveland neighborhoods are developing plans for the area's corridors. The final public meeting for the West 65th Street Corridor Plan was held in February. Its draft recommendations (PDF) call for implementing a road diet, while making streetscape improvements and increasing bicycle and pedestrian accessibility.

Meanwhile, Ohio City Incorporated and the Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization are leading a streetscape improvement plan for a portion of Lorain Avenue. They're currently conducting a survey. Further west, the Bellaire-Puritas Development Corporation is working to improve Lorain Avenue's streetscape, and will hold a public meeting on April 2.

Five buildings in Cleveland and three historic districts in Cuyahoga County were recently added to the National Register of Historic Places. The new listings include the East Ohio Building, the Globe Machine and Stamping Company on West 76th Street, the Kendel Building at 210 Prospect Avenue, the former Record Rendezvous building at 300 Prospect Avenue, and the Herold Building at 310 Prospect Avenue. The new historic districts are the Baldwin-Wallace College North Campus Historic District in Berea, the John Carroll University North Quad Historic District in University Heights, and the West 25th Street-Detroit Avenue Historic District in Ohio City.

At its February 14 meeting, the Cleveland Landmarks Commission approved the demolition of the former Euclid Avenue Church of God at East 86th Street. The Commission had rejected earlier requests in 2011 and 2012. Meanwhile, the City of Cleveland is pursuing redevelopment plans at West 117th Street and Clifton Avenue that include the demolition of the former Fifth Church of Christ Scientist.

Update: the Cleveland Restoration Society's Perspectives newsletter includes an update on the Fifth Church of Christ Scientist.

Update 2: Fresh Water said that the Fifth Church of Christ Scientist likely will be demolished.

Sustainable Community Associates, developers of the East College Street Project in Oberlin, are preparing to redevelop the former Fairmont Creamery building in Tremont. They plan to convert the mostly-vacant 100,000-square-foot building into apartments, a fitness center, and offices.

The Transformer Station gallery in Ohio City opened to the public on February 1. The 8,000-square-foot galley is a joint project of art collectors Fred and Laura Bidwell of Peninsula and the Cleveland Museum of Art. One of its inaugural exhibitions features large-scale panoramic images of Cleveland bridges by Vaughn Wascovich.

Update: Steven Litt shared his thoughts about the opening.

Eight projects in Cuyahoga County were among the 23 recipients of tax credits (PDF) in the ninth round of the Ohio Historic Preservation Tax Credit program. The awards included $5 million for the former East Ohio Building in downtown Cleveland, credits for six projects on Cleveland's near west side, and $3 million for the Beech Street Residence Halls Project in Berea.

Update: Cleveland's Department of Economic Development posted more details about the seven projects in Cleveland.

A a retail strip at Clifton Boulevard and West 117th Street in Cleveland has been demolished for the Shoppes at Clifton, a proposed retail development. The project could include the demolition of the landmark former Fifth Church of Christ Scientist. Gordon Food Service plans to build a 15,000-square-foot GFS Marketplace store nearby, which would be in a cluster of grocers.

Cuyahoga County residential development projects in the media:

The final public meetings for the Clifton Transportation Enhancement Program were held in November. Revised plans for the corridor include new bus shelters in Cleveland and Lakewood. The Cleveland portion will gain a landscaped median and will be widened by one foot in each direction. Construction could begin as early as spring 2013.

The Ohio Department of Transportation announced that it will direct $12 million toward the relocation of West 73rd Street and the construction an underpass, part of the West Shoreway reconstruction plans. It's the final piece of funding needed to link West 73rd Street with Edgewater Park. Construction of the $34.8 million project is scheduled to begin next summer.

Fresh Water recently asked if Ohio City's West 25th Street will be able to maintain its authenticity, and looked at five important public spaces in Cleveland.

Local residential projects in the news:

Update: Solon City Council approved the preliminary plat for the Neptune Oval Estates subdivision.

The City of Cleveland plans to stripe five-foot-wide bike lanes on a 1.7-mile stretch of Detroit Avenue between West 25th Street and Lake Avenue. Local bicyclists support the proposal, calling it "a step forward for Cleveland". Meanwhile, the Bellaire-Puritas Development Corp. is working with City Architecture to improve the walkability of Lorain Avenue.

Last month, local officials celebrated the groundbreaking for an urban farm at West 41st Street and Memphis Avenue in Cleveland's Old Brooklyn neighborhood. Koinonia Homes, in partnership with the City of Cleveland and the Cuyahoga Land Bank, will operate an urban farm at the 2.3-acre site of the former Memphis School. The vocational farm will include eight fields, two greenhouses, and a poultry building. A Plain Dealer editorial said it shows "what effective incubators for positive change collaboration and innovation can be."

The Rotary Club of Cleveland hopes to build a three-mile greenway and trail along the RTA Red Line tracks, eventually connecting downtown Cleveland to the Zone Recreation Center. Members prepared a video about their accomplishments and plans.

Update: the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy described the project.

The Ohio EPA declared that brownfield remediation has been completed at the 21-acre Midland Steel property on Madison Avenue and at a 6-acre property at the second phase of the Midtown Tech Park on Euclid Avenue. The agency is also considering a request for an Urban Setting Designation at the former Penguin Cleaners site on Mayfield Road in Lyndhurst. The property was redeveloped as a Key Bank branch in 2010.

NOACA recently posted two plans conducted with TLCI funding: the East 55th and Euclid Avenue Crossroads Study (PDF, 26.8 MB), which calls for redeveloping the area as the Penn Square District, and also a full version of the West Park/Lorain Avenue Transportation & Redevelopment Plan (PDF, 41.5 MB). At the Civic Commons, NOACA shared details about the program and its projects. The agency is currently evaluating the program.

Earlier this month, Cleveland residents and officials celebrated the reopening of the redesigned outdoor spaces at the Michael J. Zone Recreation Center. The $3 million project (PDF) in the EcoVillage combines active recreation with green infrastructure.

The former Ivex mill in Chagrin Falls was added to the National Register of Historic Places, listed as the Adams Bag Company Paper Mill and Sack Factory (PDF). It is being redeveloped as the mixed-use Spillway project.

Meanwhile, the Ohio Historic Site Preservation Advisory Board recommended four Cuyahoga County sites for inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places: the former Richman Bros. factory (PDF) on East 55th Street in Cleveland, the Neal Terrace and Oppmann Terrace (PDFs) apartments, both located on Detroit Avenue in Cleveland, and the Euclid Heights Historic District (PDF) in Cleveland Heights. It would be the City's 11th historic district.

The National Endowment for the Arts awarded a $50,000 Our Town grant to the Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization. The funds will be used to to design an affordable artist live/work space in the Templin Bradley Building on Detroit Avenue. The Cleveland Botanical Garden received a $59,680 grant from the U.S. EPA to improve 12 vacant lots in Cleveland and reduce stormwater runoff.

Ohio City Incorporated and the City of Cleveland prepared a neighborhood transportation plan (PDF). It aims to "provide as many transportation options as possible" and recommends implementing complete streets, transit-oriented development, a wayfinding system, and parking improvements. The plan calls for reconfiguring parking lots near the West Side Market and limiting free parking to 90 minutes. Some market vendors and patrons dislike the idea of paying to park. A Plain Dealer editorial said it's "a thoughtful plan that can easily be adapted as revitalization continues." Krissie Wells presented arguments in favor of the plan, and Angie Schmitt shared her reactions to the news.

The CDC also issued its TLCI-funded Inter-modal Urban Design & Wayfinding Plan for the Market District (PDF). It offers ways to "strengthen both the Market and Ohio City neighborhood by organizing the streets, parking facilities and land uses surrounding the area in a manner that encourages economic sustainability."

The Ohio Department of Transportation shared design concepts for amenities that would accompany the planned second Innerbelt Bridge in Cleveland. The designs show public art and greenspace elements (PDF) at the downtown and Tremont ends of the bridge. A Plain Dealer editorial cited it as evidence of a "kinder, gentler ODOT," while Steven Litt said that "the new public spaces planned around the bridges will compensate -- slightly -- for the urban damage ODOT will cause with its overall design."

The NOACA Governing Board approved changes to the five-county 2012–2015 Transportation Improvement Program, adding 25 projects to the list for federal funding. The projects include the West 73rd Street underpass, part of the West Shoreway redesign, and bus lanes along Clifton Boulevard.

Several local construction projects celebrated milestones:

Update: The Ohio Department of Transportation began work on bicycle and pedestrian improvements to the Lorain-Carnegie Bridge in Cleveland.

Local officials celebrated the reopening of the renovated Sylvia Apartments on Franklin Avenue in Cleveland's Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood. The $3 million project reconfigured the building, reducing its number of units from 24 to 18. The apartments will be mixed-income rentals.

As the Variety Theater in Cleveland continues to undergo a slow renovation process, the stretch of Lorain Avenue between West 110th and West 130th streets has been experiencing a revitalization.

The Ohio City SID now has a "Clean & Safe" program like the one in downtown Cleveland. The program's ambassadors will help make the area more welcoming. It's one of several changes in the Market District area. Ohio City Incorporated is also preparing to launch its volunteer Ohio City Shines initiative.

Through its Pop Up Rockwell event underway this week, the Kent State Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative has created a temporary complete and green street along five blocks in downtown Cleveland. It includes a two-way cycle track, and Marc Lefkowitz said that the project provides "the kind of creative spark Cleveland needs to see." In Old Brooklyn, the second annual Pop UP Pearl event will take place on May 19. It will include a DIY Urbanism Competition.

Update: West Life described the Pop Up Rockwell project.

Crain's Cleveland Business explored the remaking of Ohio City's West 25th Street in a series of articles, interviews, photographs, and maps.

Ohio City Incorporated was named the winner of the inaugural Enterprise Community Innovation Award. The CDC will will receive a $25,000 grant (PDF) to support its Market District initiative.

The Cleveland City Planning Commission adopted a revised version of the West Park/Lorain Avenue Transportation & Redevelopment Plan (PDF). The Planning Commission requested changes to the document in September 2011.

Channel 5 looked at how residents on Cleveland's West Clifton Avenue and the Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization have worked to maintain the quality of the street's housing during the foreclosure crisis.

In response to comments from the U.S. EPA, the City of Cleveland announced changes to its plans for a waste-to-energy facility at its planned Recycling & Energy Generation Center. The changes are intended to reduce its levels of toxic air emissions. Cleveland Magazine's Erick Trickey collected related press releases and statements, and participants on the latest Civic Commons radio show revisited the topic.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorial says that "Cleveland is wise to scale back its trash-to-gas plan."

Outgoing MetroHealth Chief Executive Mark Moran shared his vision for the health system. It includes an overhaul of its main campus in Cleveland and the construction of four new health centers.

The Shaker Farm Historic District in Cleveland Heights and the Jones Home Subdivisions Historic District in Cleveland were added to the National Register of Historic Places.

Update: Cleveland Heights Patch has more information about the new Shaker Farm Historic District.

In addition to objections from residents and environmentalists, some members of Cleveland City Council oppose the proposed Cleveland Recycling & Energy Generation Center and its waste-to-energy facility. Councilman Brian Cummins concluded that "the city needs to go back to the drawing board." Dan Moulthrop considered the issues in the context of sustainability.

The Congress for New Urbanism included Cleveland's West Shoreway in its 2012 Freeways Without Futures report, a list of "urban freeways that have the most potential to be transformed from broken liabilities to vibrant assets that support valuable places."

The Ohio EPA recently held a public hearing about the City of Cleveland's proposed waste-to-energy facility for the Ridge Road Transfer Station. The City is promoting the plans as a way to generate electricity, create jobs, and reduce the City's carbon footprint, but many residents and environmentalists oppose its construction. To allow for more dialogue, the Ohio EPA extended its public comment period and the City will hold a community meeting on January 19. Councilman Brian Cummins posted a list of resources, while Marc Lefkowitz suggested some alternative ideas.

Update: about 100 people attended the community meeting, and the City of Cleveland scheduled three additional meetings. The Ohio EPA will accept public comments (PDF) through February 23.

The Ohio Department of Development awarded $14.9 million in Ohio Historic Preservation Tax Credits for 13 rehabilitation projects. Eight of the projects are in Northeast Ohio, and four are in Cleveland. The Victory Building at Euclid Avenue and East 71st Street received a $4.38 million credit, the Park and Southworth Buildings on Public Square received a $1.98 million credit, the Rialto Theater on West 25th Street received a $484,108 credit, and the Gifford House on Prospect Avenue received a $108,914 credit. An Akron Beacon Journal editorial supports the tax credit program.

A group of Cleveland leaders, residents, and bicycling advocates traveled to Columbus last Thursday to demonstrate their support for the West Shoreway reconstruction plans. They attended a Transportation Review Advisory Council meeting and spoke with ODOT officials.

Update: Scene reported on the project, as well.

WKSU looked at how the Reimagining Cleveland initiative is helping to create a school garden at Buhrer Elementary School in Tremont.

Last week's public meeting about the West Shoreway plans attracted a large audience. Cleveland officials criticized ODOT's approach to the project and encouraged residents to attend the December 15 TRAC meeting in Columbus as a show of support. GreenCityBlueLake's Marc Lefkowitz said that to succeed, the project must expediently serve the the bicycle and pedestrian communities.

Update: Fresh Water provided the City's views.

The City of Cleveland is making improvements in and around the Michael J. Zone Recreation Center at West 65th Street and Lorain Avenue. Work began in June and is scheduled for completion in July 2012. When it is finished, the 22-acre park will provide opportunities for active recreation in an ecologically friendly environment.

Mayor Jackson and members of Cleveland City Council expressed anger with the Ohio Department of Transportation's handing of the West Shoreway reconstruction plans. Streetsblog, Rust Wire, and a Plain Dealer editorial were all sharply critical of the agency, as well. Bike Cleveland is encouraging interested citizens to attend a public meeting on December 1.

Leaders of Cuyahoga County's MetroHealth System want to demolish and replace the towers at its main campus on West 25th Street in Cleveland. A master plan is being prepared.

As the West Side Market approaches its 2012 centennial, Ohio City Incorporated is raising funds for events and improvements.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorial called it a "long-term, long-overdue commitment to Cleveland's culinary treasure."

The Cleveland Restoration Society's October newsletter provides updates the Cleveland Clinic's efforts to demolish the Euclid Avenue Church of God and the nearby Church of the Transfiguration, the recently-demolished St. Catherine Roman Catholic Church on East 93rd Street, and the sale of the Brooklyn Memorial United Methodist Church on Archwood Avenue in Brooklyn Centre.

A Geneva man plans to establish a 60-bed hostel on West 25th Street in Ohio City. When it opens in May, it will be the area's first hostel since the hostel at the Stanford House closed in 2008. A Plain Dealer editorial said it should help make the neighborhood "even more of a destination."

Several local residential projects are under construction or being planned.

The Cleveland City Planning Commission asked the Kamm's Corners Development Corporation to revise its West Park/Lorain Avenue Transportation & Redevelopment Plan. They said that the current version is too broad.

Local bicycling advocates are displeased that the latest changes in the West Shoreway reconstruction plans call for stripping multipurpose trails from the design. Rust Wire's Angie Schmitt characterized it as a failure of leadership and policy, while GreenCityBlueLake's Marc Lefkowitz recently stated that the entire plan deserves to be jettisoned.

Update: Marc Lefkowitz also called for a public discussion of the changes.

The Cleveland Museum of Art and collectors Fred and Laura Bidwell are collaborating to open an art gallery in the former Cleveland Railway Co. transformer station on West 29th Street in Ohio City. The 7,944-square-foot Transformer Station gallery will be used to display contemporary art when it opens late next year.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorial is supportive.

State officials awarded four Clean Ohio Assistance Fund grants, including a $299,377 grant to the City of Cleveland to conduct a Phase II assessment of the Kolthoff Road Landfill property, and a $656,272 grant to Cuyahoga County for demolition and remediation in the Emerald Alliance VII (PDF) project on Lorain Avenue in Cleveland.

Marc Lefkowitz asserts that the plans for the West Shoreway reconfiguration in Cleveland have digressed from their original intent to the point where the project is no longer worth pursuing. He says that the "city should stand firm against this diminished project, say, 'no, thanks' let's be fiscally responsible and find another way to invest $40 million in a project worthy of its citizens desire to improve the ability to recreate and enjoy the most amazing natural resource right at their doorstep."

As the cost of the West Shoreway reconstruction continues to rise, Cleveland officials criticized the Ohio Department of Transportation's management of the project and proposed changes intended to cut costs. Marc Lefkowitz said that the City "needs to stand firm on something close to the original purpose of this project, otherwise, they should scrap the whole thing."

Nestle is expanding its plant in Cleveland and plans to build a new facility in Solon. The company broke ground on a 75,000-square-foot expansion of its plant on West 25th Street in Tremont and plans to build a research and development center in Solon. The site in Solon is zoned for residential development, and voter approval is required to rezone the property.

The West Park/Lorain Avenue Transportation & Redevelopment Plan (PDF, 27.1 MB) is now available. It's intended to "outline strategies to envision a unified main street corridor for the Kamm's Corners neighborhood."

On Tuesday, panelists at the City Club (MP3, 53.1 MB) discussed how the West Site Market is stimulating development in the surrounding Market District in Ohio City, and talked about ways to contend with the pressures brought by its popularity.

Update: WKSU provided more details.

Update 2: the City Club posted video of the discussion.

The City of Cleveland approved a rezoning for the historic Franklin Castle in Ohio City. An unidentified buyer intends to rehabilitate it as three residential units.

MetroHealth will acquire and demolish the 10-story Northcoast Behavioral Healthcare facility adjacent to its main campus in Cleveland. The Ohio Department of Mental Health will provide $3.4 million for demolition and abatement. The psychiatric hospital's patients are being relocated to the facility in Sagamore Hills Township.

NOACA posted the Gateway District Streetscape and Transportation Plan (PDF, 32 MB) a November 2010 document intended to "provide a vision for the streets that will create a memorable downtown neighborhood." GreenCityBlueLake's Marc Lefkowitz wrote about the plan and the Ohio City Market District Plan, currently in progress. Both plans were funded through NOACA's Transportation for Livable Communities Initiative.

Operators of the I-X Center in Cleveland plan to invest $25 million to $30 million in the facility over the next several years. The exterior and interior improvements are scheduled to be completed in 2014.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorial says that the news is encouraging.

Plans to demolish the former St. Paul Lutheran Church on Detroit Avenue in Lakewood for a CVS store are proceeding through the review process. Meanwhile, Michael Gill looked to Cleveland's Hessler Road and Collinwood neighborhoods for ideas about saving the closed Detroit Theater from possible demolition. Several construction projects are also planned for the West 117th Street corridor along the Cleveland-Lakewood border.

RTA will celebrate the grand opening of the reconstructed Puritas Rapid Transit Station on Tuesday. Construction of the $9.6 million project began in May 2009.

The Plain Dealer published more information about the City of Cleveland's plans for a waste-to-energy facility at the Ridge Road Transfer Station and environmentalists' concerns about the concept.

Update: participants on Thursday's Sound of Ideas program discussed the proposal.

Update 2: a Plain Dealer editorial says that "the concept is intriguing."

Ohio City property owners voted to establish a special improvement district for the neighborhood. If approved by Cleveland City Council, the SID will go into effect next year.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorial backs the proposal.

The municipal Wi-Fi network for Cleveland's Old Brooklyn neighborhood went live on Friday. The $1.2 million Old Brooklyn Connected initiative will provide free wireless access for the next five years.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorial says that Councilman "Kelley and his allies deserve credit for bringing the project to this advanced stage. What remains to be seen is how it will play out and whether it will justify its projected cost".

Local environmental groups have questions about the City of Cleveland's proposed waste-to-energy facility at the Ridge Road Transfer Station. They are concerned about its air quality implications and its potential to discourage waste reduction practices. The groups will host a community discussion (PDF) on May 10 at the Cleveland Environmental Center, where Neil Seldman of the Institute for Local Self-Reliance will make a presentation.

In a Plain Dealer op-ed, Eric Wobser of Ohio City Incorporated describes the emerging artisan economy in Cleveland.

Update: Fresh Water looked at its growth along Lorain Avenue.

RTA will discontinue its two Weekly Shopper shuttle routes due to low ridership. Service on the Cleveland/Lakewood and West Park routes will end in late April.

The Center for Public Management at CSU's Levin College of Urban Affairs prepared a study (PDFs: executive summary, complete report) on the feasibility of developing an aerotropolis around Cleveland Hopkins International Airport. It says that the area "has potential as an aerotropolis, but its particular challenges require the development of a strategy that fits the Cleveland area's unique strengths and needs."

The Ohio City Near West Development Corporation is changing its name to Ohio City Incorporated, and will launch a new website on April 29.

Cleveland Hopkins International Airport officials unveiled a new 25-year master plan at a public workshop on Thursday. It recommends a variety of improvements, including a new hotel and an above-ground connection between concourses C and D. A Morning Journal editorial says that "pursuing big plans to make Hopkins a more desirable airpor [sic] makes good sense." Ricky Smith, director of Cleveland's Department of Port Control, is scheduled to speak at the City Club on April 20.

Update: Crain's Cleveland Business and WKSU provided more details.

Update 2: the City Club posted audio (MP3, 52.9 MB) and video of Ricky Smith's talk.

On Tuesday, the Ohio Transportation Review Advisory Council approved $70 million for new transportation projects (PDF), making several changes to the draft recommendations it approved in December. In addition to the controversial withdrawal of $51.8 million from the Cincinnati streetcar project, the TRAC rejected the $7.1 million it earlier recommended for the Clifton Boulevard Transportation Enhancement Program in Cleveland and Lakewood. Local projects that were funded include the Pearl Road widening project in Strongsville and the planned widening of I-271 in southern Cuyahoga County.

Cleveland Public Power filed an application with the EPA for an air permit for the proposed waste-to-energy plant in Cleveland.

Officials from RTA and the City of Lakewood met last week, and agreed to proceed with a scaled-back implementation of the Clifton Boulevard Transportation Enhancement Program. The City's financial contribution will be reduced from $486,000 to $50,000. Approval from the Ohio Transportation Review Advisory Council is required.

Update: the Plain Dealer looked at the situation in more detail.

The West Side Market Centennial Commission's final report (PDF) includes suggestions for improving market operations, enhancing the Market District, and for the market's centennial celebration.

Streetsblog's Angie Schmitt says that the plans for the West Shoreway redesign in Cleveland have changed so much since their inception that the designs now more closely resemble a highway than the boulevard that was originally proposed. She says Cleveland and other Ohio cities face "a state with a set of policies that actively undermines cities."

Citing budget cuts, Mayor Summers of Lakewood withdrew the City from the Clifton Boulevard Transportation Enhancement Program. In December, the Ohio Transportation Review Advisory Council recommended $7.1 million in funding for the project.

Update: RTA will continue to pursue the project.

The Charter One Foundation and the Ohio City Near West Development Corporation awarded around $40,000 to seven small businesses in the Cleveland neighborhood. The grants, awarded through a competitive process, are part of the Market District initiative.

The Ohio Department of Mental Health announced that it is dropping its plans to build a new psychiatric hospital on Euclid Avenue and that it will close its facility adjacent to MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland. The department says that it will save $30 million by instead expanding its Northcoast Behavioral Healthcare campus in Sagamore Hills Township. The City of Cleveland has spent more than $4.1 million on land assembly and environmental cleanup for the planned hospital in Midtown.

Update: the Akron Beacon Journal provided more details.

Representatives from the City of Cleveland, the Ohio City Near West Development Corporation, and Cleveland Public Art shared the latest plans for the redesign of Ohio City's Market Square Park. The $1.5 million project at West 25th Street and Lorain Avenue is scheduled to be completed by this fall.

Update: an OCNW video describes the project.

On the one-year anniversary of the house explosion on West 83rd Street in Cleveland, Councilman Matt Zone and the Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization are raising funds to build new homes to replace the condemned and razed houses.

Changing Gears looked at the West Shoreway reconfiguration plans in Cleveland and other freeway removal projects across the United States.

The Kamm's Corners Development Corporation kicked off the the Lorain Infrastructure Plan at a recent brainstorming session. The TLCI-funded project will develop concepts for integrating land use, transportation, and livability for a stretch of Lorain Avenue.

Participants on Monday's Sound of Ideas program discussed the Soul of the Community survey and what makes people attached to their cities. Tuesday's program was devoted to a discussion about the future of Cleveland Hopkins International Airport.

Update: Neotropolis also looked at the Soul of the Community survey.

Consultants Landrum & Brown are conducting an update of the master plan for Cleveland Hopkins International Airport. Ten alternatives for improving the airport's concourses were shared at a public workshop on Wednesday evening. Additional public meetings will be held in the first quarter of 2011.

The Bellaire-Puritas Development Corporation is conducting riparian restoration at two sites along Big Creek's Chevy Branch. In Broadview Heights, the City will hold a public meeting on Wednesday to discuss the upcoming Elsa Drive Wetland Restoration and Protection Project.

Update: the Sun Star Courier summarized the meeting in Broadview Heights.

The former Joseph & Feiss building on West 53rd Street in Cleveland was added to the National Register of Historic Places on October 28.

The Ohio Department of Transportation may build noise walls along the portion of I-90 on Cleveland's west side, and recently held a meeting to hear from the public.

AIA Ohio's 2010 awards included a merit award to Robert Maschke Architects for the bus shelters at the Gordon Arts District in Cleveland. Dru McKeown was dismayed by the declaration, and said that while the structures are handsome, they fail to function as shelters.

As the 2012 centennial of Cleveland's West Side Market approaches, the City's West Side Market Centennial Commission has begun to explore potential changes to the market and its surrounding neighborhood.

Charter One announced that it will provide $130,000 in grants to support the market district initiative in Ohio City, with $75,000 going to the Ohio City Near West Development Corporation and $55,000 to Cleveland Public Art. The bank plans to make further investments in the district.

Update: a Charter One press release has more information.

The City of Cleveland will spend $298,000 to stabilize the landmark former Fifth Church of Christ, Scientist on Lake Avenue. The funds will be used for roof repairs, among other work.

A Plain Dealer editorial criticizes the quality of the proposed designs for the new Innerbelt Bridge in Cleveland, saying that "all three proposals from prospective design-build teams are in keeping with the department's narrow vision of what can and should be accomplished here." Meanwhile, Mandy Metcalf detailed her concerns about ODOT's plans for the east end of the West Shoreway reconfiguration in Ohio City.

In their first months of operation, RTA's two Weekly Shopper Service routes have seen very few riders. The shuttle buses in Lakewood and West Park supply a portion of the service formerly provided by community circulator routes.

The Plain Dealer published more information about the new Ohio City Farm in Cleveland and how it fits into the larger neighborhood market district plan. Channel 5 spoke with some of the recent immigrants working there.

The new Fulton Road Bridge in Old Brooklyn opened on Friday. Minor work beneath the structure will continue this summer. The original bridge was built in 1932 and demolished in 2007.

The City of Cleveland is allowing the use of chemical treatments for the ash trees on West 50th Street as an alternative to removing the mature trees threatened by the invasive emerald ash borer.

Cleveland Councilman Brian Cummins rejected a proposal by the Stockyard Redevelopment Organization to expand its service area to include the Stockyard and Clark-Metro neighborhoods. He instead supports the creation of a new organization to serve the area. The Stockyard Redevelopment Organization will cease operations.

The Kamm's Corners streetscape project in Cleveland has encouraged area property owners to make improvements to their buildings.

After several delays, the new Fulton Road Bridge in Old Brooklyn will open on July 9. It includes four lanes for traffic, with bike lanes and sidewalks on each side. It will be reopened following a morning ribbon-cutting ceremony.

Amish farmers and Burmese immigrants working with Refugee Response began plowing at the Ohio City Farm in Cleveland. Located behind CMHA's Riverview Towers, the nearly six-acre farm will be one of the largest contiguous urban farms in the nation.

Update: GreenCityBlueLake has additional information.

A group of Brooklyn Centre residents objects to the Ohio Department of Transportation's plans to install noise walls along I-71. They prefer plant-based noise barriers. Meanwhile, the Cuyahoga County Commissioners adopted a voluntary noise abatement procedure for Cuyahoga County Airport.

Cleveland Hopkins International Airport recently released a draft (PDF, 46.5 MB) of its noise and land use study, and last week (PDF) held two open houses where residents shared their concerns. The document is open to public comment through June 30.

Update: the Sun Post-Herald has more details.

The Ohio Department of Transportation again delayed the opening of the new Fulton Road Bridge in Old Brooklyn. Officials cited weather as a factor, and now expect to open the bridge in mid-July.

The Ohio City Near West Development Corporation plans to attract specialty and independent retailers to the area around the West Side Market, and brand the neighborhood as the Market District.

Ideastream's David Kanzeg said that the potential cuts in flights at Cleveland's airline hub provides an "opportunity to reimagine Cleveland Hopkins International Airport as the Midwest's first intermodal passenger transportation hub."

Cleveland City Council voted to proceed with a plan to provide free wireless Internet access for the Old Brooklyn area. The City anticipates spending $900,000 over the next three years to build and maintain the network.

The West Park Shopper Shuttle began one day per week service today. It is RTA's second Weekly Shopper Service route, and is operating under a one-year agreement between RTA and the City of Cleveland.

The first public meeting for the Clifton Boulevard Transportation Enhancement Program took place on Wednesday in Lakewood. The stimulus-funded project's process will refine streetscape enhancement concepts first identified in a 2006 plan (PDF, 28.7 MB). One attendee shared her reactions.

Update: the City of Lakewood summarized the event and the Sun Post Herald published a report.

A new community development corporation may be created to serve residents in Cleveland's Clark-Metro and Stockyard neighborhoods.

RTA's first Weekly Shopper Service will serve Lakewood and Cleveland's Clifton-Detroit neighborhood. The route, a successor to the canceled community circulator, will operate on Fridays and will begin on March 26. RTA is paying for half of the route's costs, and the two cities will supply the other half.

In a companion piece to its story on vacant land in Cleveland, Next American City looked at the City's "chicken and bees" law. The City is considering expanding the rules to include more varieties of livestock. In Communities & Banking, the magazine of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston, Matt Martin and Zachariah Starnik of the Stockyard Redevelopment Organization described residents' efforts to reclaim their neighborhood through urban gardening (PDF).

Some environmentalists worry that the proposed waste-to-energy plant in Cleveland will not be as environmentally friendly as its proponents claim.

The City of Cleveland is proceeding with the third and final phase of the Kamm's Corners streetscape project. Bidding opened to contractors on Thursday.

An article in this week's issue of West Life offers more information about the Aerotropolis study being conducted by Cleveland State University. The study should be completed by the end of the month.

Workers have resumed construction of the townhouse portion of the former Ashbury Towers development in Cleveland's Stockyards neighborhood.

The City of Cleveland hired Princeton Environmental Group to design a 20-megawatt waste-to-energy power plant for the Ridge Road Transfer Station. The small company will relocate to Cleveland and begin work. The plant would be the first in the nation to employ the gasification technology.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorial calls the project "a practical example of sustainability".

Planners of the proposed aerotropolis around Cleveland Hopkins International Airport began receiving feedback at the first of the aerotropolis stakeholder sessions yesterday.

The Ohio House approved language that would reduce the speed limit on Cleveland's West Shoreway from 50 to 35 mph. It's part of the plans to convert the highway to a boulevard. City leaders are working to obtain funding for the project's second phase.

The City of Cleveland is seeking proposals from companies interested in building a municipal Wi-Fi network for the Old Brooklyn area. The pilot project would cover 4½ square miles, and if successful, would eventually be expanded to other parts of Cleveland.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorial calls it "an experiment that warrants both encouragement and scrutiny in the new year."

Residents on West 50th Street are challenging the City of Cleveland's Emerald Ash Borer Management Plan. They hope to retain the neighborhood's mature trees through regular emamectin benzoate treatments.

More than 100 people attended a rally in Tremont on Sunday for bicycle and pedestrian access on the planned new Innerbelt Bridge. They were joined by Dennis Kucinich, who wrote a letter to Governor Strickland in their support. Groups of attendees followed ODOT's proposed alternate routes in an effort to highlight their flaws.

As the Kamm's Corners streetscape project continues, more businesses are opening in the commercial district along Lorain Avenue. Workers recently completed the project's second phase, and the Kamm's Corners Development Corporation is seeking funds for the third and final phase.

The $21 million renovation of the Union Gospel Press building in Tremont should be completed by the end of the year. About half of the units in the 175,000-square-foot complex have been rented.

The new wind turbine at Pearl Road Auto Parts in Cleveland began producing electricity on Friday. It was erected in September. Owner Jon Kaplan also started PearlWind, a turbine purchasing and installation company.

The Gordon Square Arts District celebrated the completion of the Detroit Avenue streetscape project on Saturday. The grand re-opening of the district's Capitol Theatre will be held on October 2, and the festivities will continue for 10 days. A Plain Dealer editorial says that "this should be an important and joyous week for the residents of Cleveland's Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood."

Update: WCPN and the Plain Dealer have more information.

GreenCityBlueLake and Rust Wire present highlights from the second From Rust Belt to Artist Belt conference, held last week in the Gordon Square Arts District. In a Plain Dealer op-ed, Gordon Square Arts District Chairman Lawrence Schultz describes the neighborhood reinvestment as "a unique economic dynamo" that is "rewriting the way the arts can rapidly shape neighborhood redevelopment."

Update: GreenCityBlueLake has more stories from the event.

The City of Cleveland is seeking $37 million in federal stimulus funding for the planned reconstruction of the West Shoreway.

The interior makeover of Cleveland Hopkins International Airport is half complete, as manager BAA modernizes the terminal and converts the airport's retail establishments to its airmall concept.

The completion of the replacement Fulton Road Bridge in Old Brooklyn has been delayed. It is now scheduled to open in May 2010.

A Cleveland Public Power delegation is visiting Japan and China to investigate solid waste to energy conversion facilities. It is part of their efforts to establish a waste-to-energy plant at the Ridge Road Transfer Station.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorial is cautiously optimistic about the concept.

The Community Partnership for Arts and Culture will hold From Rust Belt to Artist Belt II on September 17–18 in Cleveland's Gordon Square Arts District. It will continue the conversations of the first symposium held in May 2008.

The Infrastructurist identified the planned reconstruction of the West Shoreway in Cleveland as one of seven urban freeway removal projects that could benefit American cities.

The renovated Capitol Theatre in the Gordon Square Arts District is scheduled to open on October 3. The movie theater is owned by the Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization and will be managed by Cleveland Cinemas. It will show a mix of mainstream and independent films.

A noise mitigation pilot project is underway at sites along the Ohio Turnpike in Berea and Strongsville. A final report on the effectiveness of the sound barriers should be ready in September. Meanwhile, the Ohio Department of Transportation is considering the installation of noise walls along I-90 in Tremont, and is gathering public feedback on the proposal.

Construction of the new Fulton Road Bridge in Old Brooklyn is 75% complete, but poor weather earlier this year may push back its opening from November 2009 to March 2010.

Yesterday, RTA's board of trustees approved several resolutions, including contracts for the design of the new Brookpark rapid station, for a study of the Warrensville Center Road-Van Aken Boulevard intersection in Shaker Heights, and for the construction of the new East 55th Street rapid station. The board also authorized spending to complete the overhaul of its light rail fleet and to purchase 6.7 acres for the expansion of the Westlake Park-N-Ride facility.

Cleveland Hopkins International Airport is conducting an update of its Noise Compatibility Program. Work on the 18–24-month noise study, last completed in 2000, began in January.

Cleveland Councilwoman Dona Brady introduced legislation that would designate Saints Philip and James church and school as a Cleveland Landmark. It is one of the churches being closed by the Cleveland Catholic Diocese.

ODNR's Office of Coastal Management awarded more than $1 million in Coastal Management Assistance Grants to 10 organizations and government entities (PDF). The grants include $50,000 to the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District for its Walworth Run Green Infrastructure Feasibility Study and $68,250 to the Cleveland Metroparks to develop a shoreline management plan for Huntington Reservation.

Update: West Life has more details.

RTA held a groundbreaking ceremony today for the new Puritas rapid transit station in Cleveland. Construction of the $9.6 million Red Line station is scheduled to be completed in fall 2010.

The Stanford Homes development in Old Brooklyn is being deconstructed. Construction of the six-house project on Stanford Avenue began in 2005, but was never completed.

Bishop Lennon of the Cleveland Catholic Diocese amended the plans to consolidate parishes and close churches. Two west side Cleveland churches that had been slated to close will remain open: St. Colman on West 65th Street and St. Ignatius of Antioch on Lorain Avenue. Meanwhile, the Ohio & Erie Chapter of the Institute of Classical Architecture & Classical America will continue its tours of historic Cleveland churches with tours of St. James Cathedral and St. Ignatius of Antioch on May 9.

The Finance Committee of Cleveland City Council approved $211,000 in redevelopment funding for the purchase of the Variety Theater on Lorain Avenue. The Friends of the Variety Theater organization has already secured the remainder of the building's $1 million asking price.

The City of Cleveland and a group of neighboring communities hope to create an aerotropolis around Cleveland Hopkins Airport. Mayor Jackson proposed the concept in 2007. Cleveland officials also want to build retail on City-owned property near the airport.

An article in the March/April issue of the Journal of Housing & Community Development highlighted the Tremont Pointe development in Cleveland.

The Wall Street Journal looked at the role of artists as urban pioneers during the foreclosure crisis, focusing on examples in Cleveland's Collinwood and Detroit-Shoreway neighborhoods.

The Pearl Road/West 25th Street Comprehensive Transportation Study will be unveiled at at public meeting on April 23 at the Gavin Lee Party Center in Old Brooklyn. The plan was was adopted by the Cleveland City Planning Commission on March 20.

The News Sun has more details about RTA's plans to redesign the Brookpark rapid station. The design process is expected to take 13 months, and RTA will continue to market the surrounding property for a potential transit-oriented development.

A ribbon cutting ceremony celebrating the completion of the first of the Green Cottages in the Cleveland EcoVillage will be held on April 24.

The Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority may break ground for the new Puritas rapid transit station later this month. The $9.6 million project, designed by DeWolff Partnership Architects, will be one of the first local investments to benefit from federal stimulus funding. Construction is expected to take 18 months. RTA also issued an RFP for the design of a replacement for the Brookpark station.

The Stockyard Redevelopment Organization is facing a funding shortfall. Leaders are looking at short-term and long-term strategies for the future of the community development corporation.

RTA will use some of its federal stimulus money to initiate the planning and design a four-mile line along Clifton Boulevard in Cleveland and Lakewood. The entire project will cost an estimated $14 million. New articulated buses will enter service along the corridor this fall.

Christopher Evans of the Plain Dealer praises an effort to establish an orchard on a vacant property in Cleveland's Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood, calling it an example of "grass-roots revolutionary thinking".

A runway extension at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport was officially opened at a ribbon-cutting ceremony yesterday. FAA grants covered 75% of the $44.2 million project.

Now that the Lower Big Creek Valley Greenway Redevelopment & Restoration Plan has been adopted by the City of Cleveland, backers have begun seeking funding for the implementation of the $11 million plan.

Some neighbors of the proposed townhouses at Lorain Avenue and West 47th Street in Cleveland are resisting the development. Councilman Santiago supports it.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers estimates that building a disposal dike north of East 55th Street would cost between $250 million and $300 million. The site has been proposed as the new home for the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority

The Cleveland City Planning Commission today unanimously approved the Lower Big Creek Valley Greenway Redevelopment & Restoration Plan (PDF, 79.1 MB). It calls for investments of nearly $11 million in a trail network and environmental restoration projects. The new trails will connect Brookside Reservation and the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo with the Towpath Trail.

Update: the Plain Dealer published more details.

The NRP Group has proposed building 30 to 40 townhouses at Lorain Avenue and West 47th Street in Cleveland. A public meeting on the proposal will be held on February 11 at the Urban Community School.

The Tremont West Development Corporation's increased focus on code enforcement has been a source of controversy in the neighborhood. The CDC held its annual meeting last week.

The Cleveland City Planning Commission unanimously approved the Train Avenue Greenway Plan last week. The plans call for creating a 2.5-mile trail and greenway along the Train Avenue corridor between West 65th Street and the Towpath Trail. The project will cost an estimated $2.6 million.

The two developers who purchased portions of the former Ashbury Towers project in Cleveland hope to resume townhouse and apartment construction at the site.

The winners of the 2008 Cleveland Design Competition were announced today. First prize went to Nini Spagl and Gerald Haselwanter of Wein, Austria, second prize to Sylvain Delboy, Dimitri Boutleux, and Sarah Kassler of San Francisco, and third prize to Elise Shelley and James Roche of Toronto. The Design Competition posted images of the winning entries.

The Plain Dealer looked at the renovation plans for the closed Variety Theater on Lorain Avenue in Cleveland's West Boulevard neighborhood and the La Salle Theater on East 185th Street in North Collinwood.

The Ashbury Towers property was sold at auction last week. It was divided into two parcels, and a piece with 12 completed and uncompleted townhouses sold for $375,000. The other portion, the site of the former Joseph & Feiss factory, was sold to a second developer for $255,000. The two developers could resume construction of the stalled development.

The Plain Dealer's editorial page again addresses the West Shoreway reconstruction plans, encouraging Cleveland and ODOT officials to collaborate on making the project a Cleveland signature.

The City of Cleveland allocated $175,000 in CDBG funds for the purchase of the landmark Variety Theater on Lorain Avenue. The Friends of the Historic Variety Theater are raising funds for its restoration, and hope to install a new marquee in the spring.

While RTA's 2005 plans for a transit oriented development and a new Brookpark Road rapid station did not come to fruition, the agency still plans to build a new station. However, it has been delayed because other projects are higher priorities.

The delayed plans to convert the West Shoreway to a boulevard are regaining momentum. The Ohio Department of Transportation has agreements in place, and plans to begin Phase I work (PDF) in 2010. Phase II construction is now scheduled to start no sooner than 2013. ODOT will hold a public open house on December 11 at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church.

Update: a Plain Dealer graphic breaks down the plans.

Work on the Pearl Road/West 25th Street Comprehensive Transportation Study is nearing completion.

The City of Cleveland sued Standex International, the former owner of the Trinity property on Detroit Road, and is seeking more than $1.5 million in compensation for the environmental cleanup of the site. Meanwhile, the Ohio EPA reached a settlement with the owners of City View Center in Garfield Heights. The developers agreed to make major infrastructure improvements (PDF) and pay a $1.2 million fine.

The Ohio Department of Transportation may drop its proposed two-bridge plan for carrying I-90 over the Cuyahoga River valley due to the rapid decay of the Innerbelt Bridge. One proposal calls for building a steel girder bridge under the existing truss bridge, which would require closing the bridge for two years. Meanwhile, a group of Tremont residents protested the continued closure of the West 14th Street entrance ramp to the bridge.

Update: a Plain Dealer editorial says that shutting down the bridge "would be disastrous for Cleveland."

A groundbreaking ceremony was held yesterday for the second phase of the Kamm's Corners streetscape improvement project (PDF). Work should be completed next year.

Update: the West Side Sun has more details.

On Friday, the American Planning Association presented Mayor Jackson with the award designating the West Side Market in Ohio City as one of the country's Great Public Spaces.

Research on the small house on Denison Avenue in Old Brooklyn indicates that it likely was built in 1853 by the son of one of Brooklyn Township's first settlers. Meanwhile, the North Olmsted Landmarks Commission may designate the Standen House on Kennedy Ridge Road as a historic property.

Including the proposed international village for West 25th Street in Cleveland's master plan is complicated by several factors, including disagreements between Councilman Santiago and Clark Metro Development Corporation, nonpayment of consultants' fees, and the lack of a recognized CDC for the area.

The new Fulton Road Bridge in Old Brooklyn remains on target for its scheduled November 2009 opening. Construction of the new bridge will require approximately 18,345 cubic yards of concrete.

This week's episode of WVIZ's Applause visits three houses: the straw bale house on Cedar Road in Cleveland Heights, architect Robert Maschke's modernist home near the West Shoreway, and Tremont's Clarence Court townhouses designed by Dan Bickerstaff.

Cleveland Councilman Brian Cummins is looking for more information about a small house on Denison Avenue. It was built in the 1840s, but has been poorly maintained and could be demolished.

The American Planning Association named Cleveland's West Side Market as one of the nation's great public spaces, including it on their 2008 list of Great Places in America.

The partners working on the proposed Big Creek Trail and Neighborhood Connector hope to select a preferred alignment next month. About 100 residents attended an August public meeting about the trail.

Councilman Santiago will announce plans for an international village centered around the intersection of West 25th Street and Clark Avenue in Cleveland. His intent is to create a brand for the area.

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

On September 22, the Cleveland Board of Zoning Appeals will again discuss a request to install an electronic billboard in exchange for removing five existing nonconforming billboards. A group of residents wants six additional billboards to be removed.

The September issue of the Plain Press includes articles about housing code enforcement in Tremont, conflicts caused by construction at the Union Gospel Press building in Tremont, and the status of Ashbury Towers, the stalled redevelopment of the Joseph & Feiss site in Cleveland's Stockyards neighborhood. In addition, WCPN devoted this morning's Sound of Ideas show to a discussion of Tremont issues.

Several potential routes have been identified for the planned Big Creek Trail and Neighborhood Connector, and residents are invited to provide input about the proposals at a public meeting this evening in Brooklyn City Hall. The greenway would link the Cleveland Metroparks Big Creek and Brookside Reservations by running through Parma, Brooklyn, and Cleveland.

The Cleveland Design Competition announced its second annual competition. "Project 2008: interPLAY challenges entrants to propose active and passive recreation along an existing multipurpose path that connects Cleveland's west side neighborhoods to Edgewater Park and Lake Erie."

Consultants for Cleveland Public Power are conducting a feasibility study on the potential for establishing a waste-to-energy facility at the Ridge Road Transfer Station.

The Clark-Metro Community Development Corporation is trying to reinvent itself as a provider of social services, and will no longer focus on community development activities.

Although earlier plans to rehabilitate the landmark Fifth Church of Christ Scientist on West 117th Street fell through, Cleveland officials now plan to incorporate the building into a mixed-use redevelopment of its entire block.

The Cleveland Metropolitan School District will accelerate plans for a new west side high school. The school is intended to relieve overcrowding at other buildings. A site has not yet been selected.

Phase II construction of Tremont Pointe could begin as early as next month. The first phase included 102 units of market rate and subsidized housing, and the second phase will add 78 more units.

The senior housing development proposed for the site of the former Memphis School in Old Brooklyn was not selected to receive tax credits through the state's Housing Tax Credit Program. Councilman Kevin Kelley said, "It's not likely that (housing project) will work out so we may be looking at other options for that site."

The Plain Press describes the plans for the Train Avenue trail and greenway in Cleveland. Officials hope to obtain funding for the project through ODOT's Transportation Enhancement Program.

Construction Digest reports on the construction of the new Fulton Road Bridge in Cleveland. The $45.9 million project is scheduled to be completed in November 2009.

Cleveland Hopkins International Airport received an $880,000 grant from the Federal Aviation Administration to study noise pollution issues. The funds will be used to place sound monitors in communities near the airport. If areas with noise levels that exceed federal standards are found, Hopkins officials will seek federal funding for soundproofing homes.

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.

At the first of three community meetings about the Pearl Road/West 25th Street Comprehensive Transportation Study, Cleveland residents offered suggestions for improving the corridor. The work is partially funded by a 2006 TLCI grant.

The Regionally Speaking series of the Western Reserve Studies Symposium continues with a pair of conversations about the Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood.

In a letter sent yesterday, six councilpersons from Cleveland's west side asked the Cleveland Municipal School District to build a new west side high school immediately. District officials say that construction may not begin until 2012.

The Cleveland Metropolitan School District's revised building program still includes plans for a west side reliever high school and a new John Marshall High School. The plans do not call for any school closings, but leave the future of over 30 schools to be determined later.

The latest conversation in the Western Reserve Studies Symposium's Regionally Speaking series is about the revitalization of Tremont.

The Treadway Creek Greenway Restoration & Trail in Old Brooklyn was offically dedicated at a ceremony at Harmody Park this morning.

About 400 people celebrated the start of renovation of the Capitol Theatre in Cleveland yesterday. A Plain Dealer editorial says that the $7 million project "could be the star of a much needed revival of the down-on-its heels Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood."

The renovation of the Capitol Theatre in the Gordon Square Arts District will begin tomorrow, following a celebration this afternoon. It is scheduled to reopen next April as a theater showing art and independent films.

Because of challenges facing the airline industry, Continental Airlines is scaling back and postponing parts of the $50 million Cleveland Hopkins expansion it announced last fall.

Cleveland State University and the Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority will share the costs of restoring three WPA murals that were salvaged from the former Valleyview Homes in Tremont. Two of the murals will be installed in the University's new student center once it is built. Another piece of art from the complex will be installed in a community center at Tremont Pointe.

Yesterday, Cleveland City Council approved a $1.5 million, 30 year low-interest loan for the rennovation of the Capitol Theatre at Detroit Avenue and West 65th Street.

The owner of Pearl Road Auto Parts in Cleveland wants to build a 168 foot tall wind turbine on the property near I-480. The zoning for that area limits structures to 115 feet, so a variance is required before construction can begin.

Saturday's Plain Dealer included an exploration of the Gordon Square Arts District in Cleveland's Detroit-Shoreway neighborhood. The initial quarterly Gordon Square Experience, a collaborative effort by the district, will be held this Friday and Saturday.

The Ohio Department of Transportation announced that the already-delayed West Shoreway reconstruction project has been pushed back even further, and that construction will not begin before 2013. The latest delay is intended to avoid simultaneous construction on the West Shoreway and the Innerbelt Bridge.

Three neighborhood associations want to see leadership changes at the Old Brooklyn Community Development Corporation. Their actions stem from the recent firing of OBCDC's code enforcement manager.

This evening, the Stockyard Redevelopment Organization will convene the first of three public meetings about a proposed Walworth Run trail. The trail would run along Train Avenue and connect the West Side Reliever High School and Zone Recreation Center to the Towpath Trail.

The company that proposed building senior housing on the Memphis School site in Old Brooklyn also wants to build cluster homes for seniors along Denison Avenue east of Pearl Road. Both developments are outgrowths of the MetroHealth Senior Health and Wellness Center that opened last year at the former Deaconess Hospital.

A Plain Dealer editorial says that the Strickland administration's decision to delay or scuttle the West Shoreway reconstruction project "shows a stunning insensitivity to this community's needs."

50 housing units for low-income seniors might be developed on the site of the former Memphis School in Old Brooklyn. If approved by Cleveland City Council, the NRP Group could begin construction by 2009.

A Plain Dealer editorial asserts that state and local officials must not let the Ohio Department of Transportation abandon the plans to reconstruct the West Shoreway.

With several renovation and construction projects underway, Cleveland Councilman Matt Zone believes that "Gordon Square will be synonymous with other destinations like Soho, Dupont Circle and Greenwich Village" within ten years.

Officials with the Ohio Department of Transportation and the City of Cleveland continue to disagree about implementing the stalled plans to reconstruct the West Shoreway. The bones of contention include speed limit changes, traffic congestion projections, and funding. Andy Guy identified similar disputes in other Great Lakes cities.

Cleveland Public Power may hire consultants to study the feasibility of building a waste-to-energy facility at the Ridge Road Transfer Station in Cleveland. They may seek grants to help pay for the study, which could cost as much as $250,000.

Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson said that the stalled West Shoreway redesign is one of his highest priorities. Construction has been delayed by several problems, including rising price estimates and a controversy about the design of its western end.

Update: Saturday's Plain Dealer has more details.

The City of Cleveland will extended West 122nd Street to Berea Road in order to provide a route for truck traffic to the Elmwood Avenue industrial area. Their old route was closed due to the construction of Target and Giant Eagle stores on West 117th Street.

Updates on proposed residential developments:

The Gund Foundation awarded $6.5 million in grants, including $1.2 million to the Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization for the Gordon Square Arts District and $1 million to University Circle Incorporated for the Bring Back Euclid Avenue campaign. The Foundation also gave $300,000 to Shorebank Enterprise Group Cleveland and $70,000 to Entrepreneurs for Sustainability.

The Treadway Creek Trail in Old Brooklyn recently opened to the public. It links Harmody Park to the Towpath Trail, and will be formally opened in the spring.

At a public meeting late last month, residents provided input and ideas in the planning process for the Lower Big Creek Valley Greenway Redevelopment & Restoration Plan.

Last week, CMHA celebrated the opening of 28 subsidized senior housing units at Riverside Park Estates in Bellaire-Puritas.

Plans for the restoration of the landmark Variety Theater on Lorain Avenue in Cleveland continue to move forward. Cleveland City Council recently approved a $170,000 loan to the Friends of the Historic Variety Theater, and a West Side Sun editorial says that "the plans are creating ripples of excitement in the West 117th Street area."

The grand opening of the Tremont Pointe (PDF) mixed-income community was recently celebrated. The first phase of the Cleveland development includes 102 units. Additional phases at the former Valleyview Homes site will add another 218 units.

The renovation of the former Everready powerhouse at Battery Park is scheduled to begin later this month. When completed next year, it will house a community room, a fitness center, and a restaurant.

The new RTA Red Line rapid transit station at West 117th Street opened at 9:30 this morning. Its official name is the W. 117th St.–Madison Avenue Highland Square Rapid Station. RTA officials also announced that bicycles will now be allowed on the rapid during rush hour.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development sold the mortgage on the West Tech Lofts to a Philadelphia real estate firm. Representatives of the company will meet with the property's owners to decide their next steps.

Several redevelopment projects underway along West 25th Street promise to breathe new life into the corridor.

Cleveland City Council is expected to vote on a $1.5 million Core City loan for the planned $6.7 million renovation of the Capitol Theater at West 65th Street and Detroit Avenue.

The Plain Dealer suggested that Cleveland's decision to keep Burke Lakefront Airport open was influenced by the City's desire to please Continental Airlines. Cleveland Director of Port Control Ricky Smith appeared on Monday's Sound of Ideas on WCPN to discuss airport issues.

In an apparent effort get the delayed project started, the planned reconstruction and calming of the West Shoreway has been divided into two phases. Rising prices have created a $15 million funding shortfall for the first phase.

Continental Airlines announced on Friday that it will embark on a $50 million expansion of its Cleveland Hopkins hub. Ohio offered $16 million in incentives to support the expansion. It's expected to provide 700 new jobs, a 40% increase in capacity, and 20 new nonstop destinations. A Plain Dealer editorial called it "unambiguously fantastic news".

Cleveland City Council is expected to renew a purchase agreement with Marous Development for the former Fifth Church of Christ Scientist building on West 117th Street. The property may become more attractive for redevelopment if the adjacent Giant Eagle store were to close when a nearby new store opens.

NASA has approved the $150 million redesign of the NASA Glenn Research Center. The Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority will be the master developer overseeing the 20-year program that will transform the facility.

With funding in place, work on the first phase of the Big Creek Watershed Management Plan is beginning. It's expected to continue through spring 2008.

In work funded by Neighborhood Progress Inc.'s Strategic Investment Initiative, a 100-year-old home near Battery Park in Cleveland was renovated using green building techniques.

Brooklyn officials obtained a $60,000 TLCI grant to help pay for a feasibility study for a three mile extension of the Big Creek greenway trail. In Middleburg Heights, work on the Lake to Lake All Purpose Trail will begin in September. The trail will link Lake Abram to Lake Isaac. In Shaker Heights, construction of the Shaker Boulevard median trail started earlier this week.

Ohio Department of Transportation officials say that Cleveland's delay in making a decision about the future of the controversial ramps at the west end of the West Shoreway is raising the cost of redesign. Cleveland officials contend that ODOT has provided confusing and conflicting information about construction costs and traffic estimates.

Plain Dealer columnist Joe Frolik wrote about the mixed-income redevelopment of CMHA's Valleyview Homes in Tremont, and called it "a pioneering effort to bring 'green' construction principles to affordable housing". The first tenants will begin moving in next month.

NASA Glenn Research Center and the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority reached a memorandum of understanding for the development of a land use plan for the 350 acre NASA campus.

As phase one of the Kamm's Corners streetscape project continues, community leaders are meeting to discuss its second phase. Phase one remains on schedule for completion in November, and phase two should be finished by November 2008.

In multipurpose trail news:

The planned redesigns of the Cleveland Innerbelt and West Shoreway are on indefinite hold while leaders attempt to reach consensus on some of the more contentious elements in the plans. Steven Litt presents the details and offers commentary in his new weblog.

The City of Cleveland is trying to recover a $700,000 loan from financially troubled Ameri-Con Homes. The company defaulted on the loan after a fire destroyed a part of the Ashbury Towers development. The Stockyard Redevelopment Organization is trying to find another developer to complete the redevelopment of the former Joseph & Feiss factory site.

This week's Scene takes a look at Cleveland's West Park neighborhood and what may happen to it if the City's residency requirement law is struck down by the courts.

Construction of the green cottages in the Cleveland EcoVillage will begin in August. The houses were designed by architects in the Cleveland Green Building Coalition's Emerging Green Designers Symposium and funded by the city and the state.

Recent Plain Dealer editorials say that "Greater Cleveland would benefit tremendously" from an expansion of the Continental Airlines hub at Cleveland Hopkins Airport, that the new Presidents' Council report on regionalism and equity is a "reminder that one of the most important goals of regional cooperation should be to improve the lives of as many people as possible," and that the planned Chagrin Falls arts district should make the Village "even more irresistible."

After being used for search and rescue training, the former Memphis School in Old Brooklyn is being demolished. The City of Cleveland will maintain the 2.4 acre site as greenspace while officials consider plans for its redevelopment.

Construction of the new West 117th Street rapid station is nearing completion, and the main entrance and parking lot reopened earlier this week. The new station will be called Highland Square at West 117th Street, and a reopening ceremony is scheduled for mid-September.

The State of Ohio offered a $16 million financial incentive package to Continental Airlines to attract a potential $50 million expansion of their Cleveland Hopkins hub.

Steven Litt of the Plain Dealer describes several catalytic redevelopment efforts underway in Cleveland's Detroit Shoreway neighborhood. "After decades of urban husbandry in housing and retail, the district is about to gain critical mass."

PCB contamination was discovered at the former Trinity Building site on Detroit Avenue, a brownfield property that is now in the City of Cleveland's industrial land bank. The situation may force City officials to change their plans for redeveloping the site.

Three of the 13 trustees of the Clark-Metro Development Corporation resigned over a dispute about the date of the organization's annual meeting, and at the meeting, five people were named to the board in an uncontested election.

Cottage Living magazine named Ohio City as one of their Top 10 Cottage Communities for 2007, calling it a "comeback community".

The 50 unit Detroit-Superior Lofts condominium project proposed for the southwest corner of Detroit Avenue and West 28th Street in Ohio City has been enlarged to become a seven story building. The nonprofit A Place For Us is no longer a partner in the development.

(Update: The Plain Dealer offers more information on the withdrawal of A Place for Us from the project.)

The Clark Metro Development Corporation on Cleveland's west side continues to be the focal point of a power struggle between Ward 14 Councilman Joe Santiago and his predecessor, Nelson Cintron Jr.

Organizers of the Cleveland Design Competition announced their winners last evening. The competition attracted 70 entries from nine countries, all offering design proposals for the Irishtown Bend area on the Cuyahoga River's west bank. First place went to a team led by Nicholas Sully of Vancouver for a proposal that called for creating terraced gardens and walkways. The entries will be exhibited at the Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative from June 21 to July 30.

(Update: a gallery of the winning submissions is now online.)

Construction of the first phase of the Kamm's Corners streetscape improvement project will start on June 18. The work is scheduled to conclude in November, with phase two beginning next spring.

In anticipation of the National Solar Energy Conference that will be held in Cleveland next month, the Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District will install a small wind turbine at its Westerly Wastewater Treatment Plant near Edgewater Park.

The Cleveland Green Building Coalition received $450,000 from the Ohio Housing Finance Agency and $150,000 from the Cleveland Housing Trust Fund to build five houses designed by architects in their Emerging Green Designers program. The two and three-bedroom houses will be built in the Cleveland EcoVillage, and will be priced from $105,000 to $135,000.

The City of Cleveland has exhausted the $36 million budgeted for phase one of the Home Acquisition Program for the planned expansion of Cleveland Hopkins Airport. The Brook Park houses in zones one through four were purchased, but zones five and six were shifted to phase two.

Continental Airlines also announced that they may expand one of their three U.S. hubs. The Ohio House earmarked $1.5 million for a $45 million Hopkins expansion, and the state awarded the airline a $900,000 grant to help pay for new equipment and machinery. Continental would cover most of the remaining expenses.

The City of Brooklyn will apply for a $75,000 TLCI grant to conduct an alignment study for a proposed trail linking the Cleveland Metroparks Big Creek and Brookside Reservations.

Aviation experts support the decision of Cleveland Hopkins officials to not lengthen a runway for nonstop flights to Asia. "Cleveland itself is not going to be an Asian gateway. You just don't have the horsepower. If you don't need it, don't spend it."

Plans to extend a runway at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport to accommodate service to the Pacific Rim have been indefinitely delayed. Instead of extending the runway to 11,250 feet, it will be lengthened to 10,000 feet and an intersection with a smaller runway will be eliminated.

On weekends in May, members of the Midwest Railway Preservation Society will lead tours of the damaged historic B&O Roundhouse on West 3rd Street in Cleveland.

Demolition teams were only able to implode two of the six arches of the Fulton Road Bridge on Saturday. It took three attempts to implode the sections of the 75 year old Cleveland bridge. Workers blamed a faulty charge line, and ODOT is working to schedule a time when the implosion can be completed. Cleveland.com presents video, a time-lapse animation, and a photo gallery. Channel 3 and Channel 5 also covered the event.

(Update: the incomplete implosion will not cost taxpayers additional money. Crews will attempt to bring down the rest of the bridge at 6:00 p.m. on Tuesday)

The partially demolished Fulton Road Bridge in Cleveland will be imploded on Saturday at 8:00 a.m. Spectators can watch the blast from Cleveland Metroparks Brookside Reservation football field. The $46.4 million replacement bridge is scheduled to be completed in late 2009.

Adam Harvey posted images of a booklet that was published by the Cleveland Landmarks Commission in 1977 on the architecture of East Tremont.

(via Tremonter)

A Plain Dealer editorial backs the Cleveland City Planning Commission's decision on the plans for the western end of the West Shoreway redesign. "The planning commission - which is supposed to consider what is right for the entire city, not a sliver of it - was right to endorse the original vision."

Supporters of the two options for redesigning the western end of the West Shoreway in Cleveland continue to disagree about the plans. Councilman Jay Westbrook described the situation as a standoff, and ODOT does not intend to reconvene its Lakefront West Subcommittee until City officials obtain consensus.

Cleveland Ward 14 Councilman Joe Santiago recently pledged $60,000 from his ward allocation to the Clark Metro Development Corporation. Without the funds, the organization would have run out of money in June.

Of the two alternatives for the western end of the West Shoreway redesign, the Cleveland City Planning Commission endorsed the plan that was not the preferred option of neighborhood stakeholders. The alternative adopted by the Planning Commission includes fewer ramps and provides more greenspace for enlarging Edgewater Park.

Robyn Sandys will succeed Jay Gardner as executive director of the Brooklyn-Brighton Community Development Corporation. She was previously Director of Development and Marketing at Case's Mandel Center for Nonprofit Organizations.

Residents in Clark Metro want the Clark Metro Development Corporation to stay open. Last year, Cleveland Councilman Joe Santiago cut off City funding for the CDC. It is now down to two employees, and may be forced to close or merge with another CDC.

Stakeholders at a West Shoreway meeting (PDF) last week identified a preferred option for the layout of the ramp near West Boulevard, Lake Avenue, and Clifton Boulevard. The proposal, which would add 3.4 acres to Edgewater Park, will be presented to the Cleveland Planning Commission this week.

Preliminary work is currently underway on installing noise barriers along I-71 in Cleveland's west side. About five miles of noise abatement walls will be built. The $5.9 million project is now scheduled to be completed in October.

Construction of phase one of the long-delayed Kamm's Corners streetscape revitalization is scheduled to begin in April and end in September. The entire project should be completed by November 2008. The improvements will include burying power lines, new light poles and fixtures, replacing sidewalks and curbs, and new plantings.

Plans for 25-unit condominium development next to St. Mary's Romanian Orthodox Cathedral at Warren Road and Montrose Avenue in West Park may have hit several snags.

The developers who purchased the Union Gospel Press building in Tremont in 2003 plan to convert the historic complex into 103 apartments. The City of Cleveland approved the restoration plans, and if the developers are able to obtain financing, the first tenants could move in 12 to 20 months after construction begins.

Cleveland Councilman Joe Cimperman introduced a plan on Monday that would rezone stretches along Detroit and Lorain Avenues in Ohio City to prevent used car lots from moving in, saving the land for housing development. Cimperman asserted that the area now has many abandoned buildings that are "ripe for redevelopment".

Vintage Development Corp. has begun renovating the powerhouse building at Battery Park near Edgewater Park. The first 10 of 300 housing units in the powerhouse building are currently under construction and Vintage plans to start building 18 "Gateway" townhouses near the powerhouse sometime next month. Other developments for the site may include a restaurant, community center, and park.

As part of the Fulton Road Bridge replacement project, the closed John Nagy Boulevard will be replaced by a $1.2 million multipurpose trail. The trail near near the Cleveland Metroparks Zoo will connect to existing trails in Brookside Park and eventually to the Towpath Trail, once the Big Creek Connector is constructed.

Work on the multipurpose trail portion of the Treadway Creek Greenway Restoration Project is slated to begin this spring. It will eventually link Harmody Park to the Towpath Trail. Planning for a second trail linking the Zoo to the Towpath is being conducted as part of the Lower Big Creek Greenway Redevelopment and Restoration project.

Although the planned expansion of Cleveland Hopkins Airport has yet to begin, the Brook Park neighborhood on the site of the expansion area is mostly empty today. Cleveland officials pledge to continue the $36 million residential buyout program.

Cleveland residents at last night's West Shoreway meeting expressed a desire to maintain the five-way intersection at West Boulevard and Lake Avenue. An Ohio Department of Transportation advisory committee will review the ramp options and will make a recommendation.

At this evening's West Shoreway public meeting, Ohio Department of Transportation officials and west side Cleveland residents will discuss the disputed plans for the ramps at Lake Avenue and Clifton Boulevard.

The Ohio Department of Transportation will host a public meeting (PDF) where Cudell and Edgewater residents can discuss design options associated with the planned West Shoreway redesign. It will be held at St. Thomas Evangelical Lutheran Church on January 25 starting at 5:00.

The Quad Building at MetroHealth Medical Center in Cleveland is being razed. Demolition of the building built between 1914 and 1930 is expected to be completed in April. The 2.86 acre site will be used as landscaped open space.

Planned renovations to the Capitol Theatre, the construction of a new home for Near West Theatre, and the existing Cleveland Public Theatre will serve as anchors for the Gordon Square Cultural Arts District. Cleveland Councilman Matt Zone calls it Detroit Shoreway's "single most important economic development project" in nearly 90 years.

The Federal Home Loan Bank of Cincinnati awarded $1.2 million in grants to Emerald Development and Economic Network for affordable housing projects. $1 million will go towards the construction of South Point Commons, an $11.3 million supportive housing project planned for West 25th Street near MetroHealth Medical Center.

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