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Cleveland: Jay Avenue Lofts

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Our other Sun reporter, David Plata, has written numerous articles about this project. I don't remember the last one he's written, but you should be able to find complete articles in the archives at sunnews.com


"Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you respond." -- Coach Lou Holtz

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Yes, the Lighthouse development is the new name for Front Street Lofts. And I beat you to posting renderings of that project. ha ha


"Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you respond." -- Coach Lou Holtz

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Interesting, I don't recall ever seeing this building on Jay Avenue or hearing about this project. Just want to clarify one thing, is this a historic hotel being turned into housing, or is it being turned into a hotel?

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This Jay Hotel sounded like it was a place full of interesting characters,  I would have liked to check out the scene myself. Too bad it is gone from the neighborhood.

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No, I can assure you that Ohio City is a much better place without the Jay Hotel (in its former state). From what I understand from friends who live in the area, it wasn't just "interesting and edgy", it was downright dangerous and really held the area back.

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From the May 8th Board of Zoning Appeals agenda:

 

9:30      Ward 13

Calendar No. 06-62: 2517 Jay Avenue Joe Cimperman

    23 Notices

 

Gormark Developers, Inc., owner, and Matt Solomon, agent, appeal to construct an addition and change the use from a hotel to apartments and townhomes, proposed for an existing three-story masonry building situated on a 74’ x 108’ lot located in a General Retail Business District on the southwest corner of Jay Avenue and West 26 th Street at 2517 Jay Avenue; contrary to Section 355.04 of the Area Regulations for residence buildings in all use districts, 10,918 s/f is proposed instead of one-half the lot size area or 5,993 s/f; and contrary to Section 357.04 in the Requirements for Yards and Courts, a front yard depth of 6’ is proposed where 16’ is required; and there is no rear yard where a 30’ depth is required, based upon one-half the height of the main building and as stated in Section 357.08(b)(2) of the Codified Ordinances. (Filed 4-17-06)

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There's a cheesy new sign up for the project on the old hotel/post office building and they've been working inside recently.  There's a new dumpster in the adjacent lot as well.  Little by little!

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The Heartland sales team has been out at the Bier Markt on W. 25th for the past two weekends, working on pre-sales.  Apparently, this first phase includes only the old hotel/post office building and the empty lot next door.  The cheap warehouses next door that front Bridge and the commercial buildings that front W. 25th are in the plans down the road, but are not in the immediate future.

 

Here's a better image than what we've been looking at so far...this is from Jay Avenue, looking southeast towards the site:

 

JayLofts.jpg

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I don't like it. The new stuff is mediocre and dwarfs the old Jay Hotel building, which actually has some grace. But thanks for posting!

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It's hard to tell from these renderings what will be built on top of the old structure and what will be part of the new structures.  From what I can tell, the dark stuff on top is all on top of the old hotel building and will be penthouses for the condos there.  The new, colorful stuff will be the townhomes. 

 

I agree, though, B12.  I don't really like it.  It's a little too "something" for that spot.  I think this could be ironed out in design review (I think it will, to a certain extent) and I think in the end that well get a dramatic improvement over what has been there for the past several years.  That being the low-rise warehouses and a boarded up post office/flop house.  I think the major error for me in many of these new townhouse buildings is the abandonment of traditional, high quality materials (brick & stone) in favor of corrugated metal and vinyl siding.  The latter two often look tacky and don't wear as well.  Some would tell me I'm wrong though...

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I don't mind the corrugated metal if it is used right, but the vinyl siding always looks tacky.  I wish that the city would require hardy board or wood siding.  That does drive up the price some, and nobody wants to ever have to repaint anymore.

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Rode by on my bike today and noticed the front door open -- looks like they've finally started work:

 

2006_0607Image0003.jpg

 

You know I had to peek inside, at what appears to have been the old lobby. It was none too pretty:

 

2006_0607Image0001.jpg

 

2006_0607Image0002.jpg

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Over the last few days there has been quite a bit of activity.  I know it says "POST OFFICE" on the stone above the central entrance, anyone know when it was actually a functioning post office.  We could definetly use one in the OC today, I'm sick of paying 55 cents a piece for stamps at Dave's.

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Yeah, that would be nice. In the meantime, I sometimes go to the one at Lorain and W. 65th (bikeable or rapidable) or the ones downtown. I know, not quite the same.

 

As for when the Jay Hotel was last a post office, I don't know. It must have been a looooooooong time ago. I seem to recall the building itself dates to about 1915.

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^Nice!  I didn't notice that when i passed by yesterday, but that was around 8 in the morning.  There were lots of workers getting ready to start the day, though. 

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By the way, there used to be a bowling alley in the building, in addition to the former roles as flop house, post office and hotel.

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They seemed to have done the bulk of yesterday's work after 5pm.  It shouldn't take long to knock down those tin cans. 

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By the way, there used to be a bowling alley in the building, in addition to the former roles as flop house, post office and hotel.

 

Sure makes for an odd combination for one-stop shopping

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Yes, indeed!  Though, I don't know which uses occupied the building simultaneously...

 

I went by the site yesterday morning and evening and there didn't seem to be a lot of progress on the demo.  It seems odd that they started in the middle, too.  Whatever...as long as they're coming down!  Word on the streets, though, is that they didn't have proper permitting to start the demo.  I don't know if that's true, but it would seem to me that after all the delays to date, they would at least have had enough time to get their permits in order!  Maybe it's the fault of a subcontractor or something...  we shall see!

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A few posts back, it was said that the first phase didn't include the area with the sheds.  Did the plans change, or are they going to use this lot for something in the interim?

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The renderings don't tell the whole story, but it looks like the townhome portion of the project may go all the way from Jay to Bridge...which would necessitate all of these coming down.  As they've already started knocking them down, I would say that's the case!

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all the warehouses are down, except the little one that's actually attached to the hotel building.  Maybe they're using this to store some equipment or materials while they work on the old building?

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check this out while it lasts. It looks like the ohiocity.com site has been vandelized by someone objecting to this project. i am sure someone will catch this any second and it will be gone.  http://www.ohiocity.com/

 

here it is copied and pasted:

Councilman Joe Cimperman Doesn't Care About Ohio City Residents as Shown by His Actions

 

 

 

 

The vast majority of Ohio City residents are not in favor of allowing the requested variances to be granted for the proposed structure below to be built on Ohio City's most historic street!

 

Jay Avenue is one of the most historic streets in all of ohio city. It is filled with lovely victorian homes and lots of character and charm that people want to see when they visit Ohio City. Lolly the Trolley even comes down the street several times a day to talk it up.

 

I'm Dave Stack and as a long time resident of Ohio City speaking on behalf of the majority of Ohio City residents who have an opinion on this matter, we do not want to see such a massive structure built on such a small lot on the corner of Jay and W30th. Having such a large structure there will not only be an eye sore, it will take away charm from our historic street and lower our property values.

 

We are not at all opposed to having a structure built in the space, but we would like to see one built where a 17 foot variance (among many others) are not being asked for. We see this as being a totally reasonable request and the current requested variances being asked for as extremely unreasonable which would have a very negative impact on the neighborhood if granted.

 

Joe Cimperman knows this is how the vast majority of Ohio City feels, but yet he continues to throw his full support behind this project even though those who elected him do not want this building to be built in its current size.

 

Why does Joe Cimperman fully support this project when most of Ohio City doesn't support it????????

 

Many people feel that Joe Cimperman and the owner of the property (Jim Evangelista) are friends and Joe Cimperman is putting his friendship and his friends financial interest ahead of the thoughts and feelings of Ohio City residents. This is not right! If this is true, Shame on Joe Cimperman for totally ignoring the wishes of what the neighborhood wants in order to help his friend make a quick dollar.

Do not allow the requested variances to be approved. Come to the one and only meeting to stop this:

 

Board of Zoning Appeals

601 Lakeside Avenue, Room 516

Monday July 24th at 9:30 to voice your opposition to this!

 

Or send an email objection to me at dave@musicstack.com and I will print it out and hand deliver it for you.

 

We need your support!

 

Why This Project Is a Bad Idea:

• Proposed house is MASSIVE for the lot size. Not reasonable at all. Lot not even big enough for a single family, let alone a double!

• Will remove much needed parking spots from W 30th where curb cuts must be added.

• 4 car garage with huge garage doors are not attractive to look at from W30th.

• Asking for a 17 foot rear yard variance is outrageous! Will eliminate most all green space.

• Asking for another 7 foot side yard variance removed even more possible green space.

• Asking for a 4' 1" variance to build closer to the next door house is a FIRE HAZZARD!

• The owner (Jim Evangelista) doesn't have Ohio City's interest in mind - only finanical gain.

• Cimperman giving full support against the will of neighborhood is bad for future trust in our councilman.

• Having such a large eye soar will lower surrouding neighbors property values.

• The design of the house doesn't fit in well with surrounding homes on Jay Avenue.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

BOARD OF ZONING APPEALS JULY 24, 2006

9:30 Ward 13 - Calendar No. 06-123 - 2925 Jay Avenue

Joe Cimperman - 12 Notices

 

Jay & 30th Project LLC, owner, and Douglas Wahl, agent, appeal to erect a 34' x 20' two-story frame dwelling, proposed to be erected on a 40' x 51.66' parcel located in a Two-Family District on the southeast corner of Jay Avenue and West 30th Street at 2925 Jay Avenue; subject to the limitations of Section 349.05(a), there may be no parking space located within 10' of a residential building or structure if the wall facing the space contains a ground floor opening designed to provide light or ventilation; and contrary to Section 355.04(b), a minimum lot area of 2,246 s/f is provided and 4,800 s/f is required and a maximum gross floor area of 2,040 s/f is proposed, exceeding one-half of the lot size; and contrary to Section 357.08(2)(b)(1), there is a 3' rear yard depth where 20' is required; with a distance of 5'-11" provided contrary to 10' from a main building, and the proposed aggregate width of the total side yards equals 3' and the aggregate width of side yards on the same premises may not be less than 10' as stated in Section 357.09(2)B of the Codified Ordinances. (Filed 6-19-06)

 

 

9:30 Ward 13 - Calendar No. 06-124 - 1817 West 30th Street

Joe Cimperman - 12 Notices

 

Jay & 30th Project LLC, owner, and Douglas Wahl, agent, appeal go erect a 34' x 20' two-story frame dwelling, proposed to be erected on a 40' x 56.15' parcel located in a Two-Family District on the south side of West 30th Street near Waco Court at 1817 West 30th Street; subject to the limitations of Section 349.05(a), there may be no parking space located within 10' of a residential building or structure, if the wall facing the space contains a ground floor opening designed to provide light or ventilation; and contrary to Section 355.04(b), a minimum lot area of 2,246 s/f is provided and 4,800 s/f is required and a maximum gross floor area of 2,040 s/f is proposed, exceeding one-half of the lot size; and contrary to Section 357.08(2)(b)(1), there is a 3' rear yard depth where 20' is required; with a distance of 5'-11" provided contrary to 10' from a main building, and the proposed aggregate width of the total side yards equals 3' and the aggregate width of side yards on the same premises may not be less than 10' as stated in Section 357.09(2)B of the Codified Ordinances. (Filed 6-19-06)

 

 

 

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^ but this isn't the jay hotel project, just a random 2 house development with these requested variances.  and what was on this website before?  it seems like he may just own the name with ".com" and post what he feels like?  i don't know...

 

the guy doing the posting is also behind the pluggedincleveland.com website. 

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ohiocity.com is ohio city's official website and other than the logo, this is different. the real web site is non biased and has info about local businesses and things to do etc. this guy jacked the site!

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well, it is registered to David Stack, the same guy making these statements.  I think he may just be a supporter of Ohio City.  I don't know how "official" his site is, as the ocnw.org appears more focused in this area.

 

It also appears that he lives across the street from the development and doesn't want to look at it.

 

ohiocity.com

Registrant:

  David Stack

  2920 Jay Ave Cleveland n/a OH 44113

  , 

  United States

 

  Registered through: GoDaddy.com, Inc. (http://www.godaddy.com)

  Domain Name: OHIOCITY.COM

      Created on: 10-Dec-99

      Expires on: 10-Dec-06

      Last Updated on: 15-Oct-05

 

  Administrative Contact:

      Stack, David  dstack@musicstack.com

      2920 Jay Ave Cleveland ohio

      ,  44113

      United States

      216-575-1480      Fax --

 

  Technical Contact:

      Stack, David  dstack@musicstack.com

      2920 Jay Ave Cleveland ohio Record updated on 23-Nov-2003 Record expires on

10-Dec-2004 Re

      cord created on 10-Dec-1999

      ,  44113

      United States

      216-575-1480      Fax --

 

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this is really  weird, b/c  the ohio city near west develop corp has a link to it, and I have used it often for info over the last few years. so.... I guess he has had it all along, but until now used it for info with more broad appeal. thanks for the info. I always thought the site was sponsored by the ocnw.org

edit: my apologies to stack for accusing him of stealing /vandelizing a web site. (but I liked ohiocity.com!)

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don't worry, it'll be back to normal in no time.  mr. stack is just doing his darnedest to bring this issue, which is very important to him and many other neighbors, to light before it is too late!  Now, back to the Jay Ave. lofts!

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last time I was there they had a display set up, but no "office."  It could have changed!  I'm pretty sure that one of the Priemers, (Gordon Priemer heads Heartland) had a lot to do with Bier Markt.  Correct me if I'm wrong!

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This was the scene over a week ago.  I thought the pile was getting smaller, but they've since added some mattresses and other assorted scrap to the mound!

 

IMG_7831.jpg

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Ok, the mound is officially shrinking!  Intensive work continues on the interior of the old hotel building and the remainder of the site is slowly being cleared... I'd still love to see a site plan for this thing!

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It's so strange to me that Heartland still does not have any mention of this project on their website.  That, and it's been nearly three months since those piles of trash started to accumulate on the site and they're still not all gone yet!  I'm writing a letter...

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I drove by here the other night and it looks pretty much the same as it did a few months ago. What's the word on progress?

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I dropped in Bier Markt and talked to the official at the table a few days ago.  She said Jay is still very much "on" but that presales are lagging; that right now, Heartland is focusing on their other props, like Avalon Station in Shaker, one in Warrensville Hts and a couple on the West Side...  She said they expected the spring/summer season will pick up and construction will commence.  It's interesting that Fries & Schuele, which is similar and just a few doors down, is always lock-tight with buyers; there's ever hardly a vacancy, despite the fact that, though nice, it's way overpriced imho, esp for the Cleveland market -- they're charging Chicago/Philly money for this building; not to put us down, but as nice as we are, we're not quite there, yet.

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I dropped in Bier Markt and talked to the official at the table a few days ago.  She said Jay is still very much "on" but that presales are lagging; that right now, Heartland is focusing on their other props, like Avalon Station in Shaker, one in Warrensville Hts and a couple on the West Side...  She said they expected the spring/summer season will pick up and construction will commence.  It's interesting that Fries & Schuele, which is similar and just a few doors down, is always lock-tight with buyers; there's ever hardly a vacancy, despite the fact that, though nice, it's way overpriced imho, esp for the Cleveland market -- they're charging Chicago/Philly money for this building; not to put us down, but as nice as we are, we're not quite there, yet.

 

I disagree, i think the Ohio City Market is there.  Not all of Cleveland, but certain areas.

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Well if they are waiting for presales, they might have to wait awhile. Many other developers in the OC are building without presales. Buyers are going for something that they can see and touch.

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I'm no RE guru (wish I was, b/c I could clean up here), but it appears that simply some projects are more/better funded than others so developers are more apt to build/finish more on spec than hard presales which all of them must have some presale ratio before a spade goes into the ground... RE is funny, reflecting the people who buy & locate there.  Speculators since the dawn of time have tried to figure exactly what turns people on or off about property... Fries & Schuele soars while Jay struggles... Stonebridge (w/ it's weird sort of out-of-the-way location) can't put up buildings fast enough to meet demand, while Pinnacle, right in the heart of one of Cleveland's hotest/hippest hoods, is -- by simply eyeballing it at night --is largely vacant.  Go figure   :wtf:; although I have heard gripes that Pinnacle is considered by some overpriced for this market and may come down a tad (then again, Larchmere Lofts, around the corner from me, is selling 12-1400 sq ft, 2-bed units for over $320K and like F&S and Stonebridge, stay over 95% full -- again, go figure) ...  Developers like Heartland, no doubt, subsidize their struggling (presales) props w/ their more successful ones... I know for a fact, Avalon Station was, as of Christmas, had low presales -- about 17 units sold of around 50, yet it is almost finished.  And it appears their moving on Phase II across the street.

 

I suspect once Avalon and a few others get on their feet, Heartland will turn attention (including stepped up marketing) to Jay... but as to when, exactly, who knows.  Of course their reps are going to project as sunny outlook as possible...

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