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Cleveland: Midtown: Development and News

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Who is the council rep for Midtown?

 

Midtown is part of four different wards.  The councilpeople are: Joe Cimperman, Phyllis Cleveland, T.J. Dow, and Mamie Mitchell.  Cimperman's district does not go far enough east to touch the proposed developments on Euclid.  He is, however, the city council representative on the Planning Commission, and thus still worth contacting about this.  I've written all four.  Only Cimperman responded (his response was to contact the other three).  Anyone who wants the letter I sent is more than welcome to it.  Just PM me and I'll send it to you.

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I still don't understand the frustration here ... The number of affordable housing units in the Gordon Square Arts District exceeds the numbers here; many of those units are directly over the storefronts, and development there seems to be anything but stigmatized.

 

As X noted, this is a model that actually provides a lot of additional support services and transitioning individuals out of poverty; this is not Caprini Green going up on Euclid. This is 70 units for single people ... 70 residents are going to destroy development opportunities along Euclid? I know I'll probably get lynched, but I think this is a potentially good location for this type of project. Access to reliable frequent mass transit service that connects the two largest employment centers in town seems like a no-brainer when trying to transition people out of extreme poverty. The program already boasts a 99% success rate in moving people permanently out of homelessness; I can only think that access to mass transit improves the odds for these people. From a social services perspective, I think it's actually pretty spot-on.

 

From a community development standpoint, I can't really say what adverse impact this will have on the corridor. You guys could be absolutely right. But the sheer VOLUME of frontage along Euclid that needs to be filled leads me to believe that this is not going to hamper the overall development of the corridor. Even if you had the rather robust development demand going on downtown, without a credit crunch or global financial crisis, and even if you focused exclusively on renovating buildings and filling gaps between Public Square and E. 55th Street, you're looking at years and years of work ... I don't think 20 years would be out of the question. Extend that development effort to the border of East Cleveland ... we have a TON of space to play with.

 

The fact is, no one has really been clamoring for development opportunities between E. 55th and the E. 70s. And I can't imagine that fallow lots and crumbling factories were really going to attract developers in a way that new housing (albeit low-income) and a major healthcare institution (albeit in the over-stigmatized field of mental health) can't. Increased ridership, eyes on the street, daytime and evening population in a currently largely abandoned swath of land ... what am I missing?

 

I think we should focus our efforts more on demanding quality design standards for the project and ongoing upkeep of the corridor. To me, advocating zoning conformity, inclusion of ground-level retail, avoidance of pointless dead spaces, an outright ban on surface parking lots fronting the street, etc ... these seem more reasonable arguments to make. Going in with guns blazing about why these projects are horrible for Euclid may just ring shrill for council leaders who've been around for DECADES where few wanted to develop anything in this area.

 

Final point, to suggest that mental health and transitional housing services are good things but should be tucked away where they won't offend anyone with money ... well, that strikes me as elitist. Not trying to name-call here, and I recognize people's very valid concerns, but I do think we need to stop and think about who we're developing this corridor FOR ... a representative population of the city of Cleveland or a wealthy sliver of population who may be interested in living here in a decade or so.

 

 

 

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The fact is, no one has really been clamoring for development opportunities between E. 55th and the E. 70s.

 

 

I can say with reasonable certainty this is not true. There have been more than a few companies and developers looking at this area.

 

I don't think people are saying either service should be tucked away. In fact, Chester is a block away, has a bus line and could easily accommodate the housing. The Mental Health facility seems like a shame if only because the property represents one of the few significant pieces of land that has been amassed inside the city (by the CDC) and we are turning it over to the County instead of allowing private investment dollars to go there. (and there have been attempts by bio-tech companies to go there).

 

What is really frustrating to me is that you have a ton of (federal)tax dollars going into the Euclid Corridor project that will now have been spent in order to create more (city and county) tax dollar spending on service providers. At some point someone is going to have to make some money to sustain these types of things as well as convince somebody who has a salary to live in the city in order to tax them to pay for these types of things.  However, nobody who is running a business will be too excited about putting their business next to a shelter for the terminally homeless and my guess is that people looking to move into the city will now have more reason to avoid this area as a possible landing spot than they did in the past, despite the convenience of being located on the Health Line.

 

If I'm a Case Student I'm sticking it out on the Hill instead of heading closer to downtown (thus spending my parent's money in Cleveland Heights rather than Cleveland proper).

 

Finally, I don't think it's about filling the gap between Public Sqr and E. 55th. You have University Circle and CSU as two potential building blocks now connected the Euclid corridor project. Getting Case Students and CSU students to co-mingle with the Clinic, downtown and U.C. would do a good deal more than trying to get companies from downtown to spread out onto the Euclid (companies that tend to think Cleveland stops at e.13th anyway)

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^I would certainly like to know which developers and tech firms have been looking to do something in midtown.  Could you be specific and also let us know how serious each developer was and what obstacles prevented them from going forward (other than the credit crunch).

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The fact is, no one has really been clamoring for development opportunities between E. 55th and the E. 70s.

 

 

I can say with reasonable certainty this is not true. There have been more than a few companies and developers looking at this area.

 

I don't think people are saying either service should be tucked away. In fact, Chester is a block away, has a bus line and could easily accommodate the housing. The Mental Health facility seems like a shame if only because the property represents one of the few significant pieces of land that has been amassed inside the city (by the CDC) and we are turning it over to the County instead of allowing private investment dollars to go there. (and there have been attempts by bio-tech companies to go there).

 

What is really frustrating to me is that you have a ton of (federal)tax dollars going into the Euclid Corridor project that will now have been spent in order to create more (city and county) tax dollar spending on service providers. At some point someone is going to have to make some money to sustain these types of things as well as convince somebody who has a salary to live in the city in order to tax them to pay for these types of things.  However, nobody who is running a business will be too excited about putting their business next to a shelter for the terminally homeless and my guess is that people looking to move into the city will now have more reason to avoid this area as a possible landing spot than they did in the past, despite the convenience of being located on the Health Line.

 

If I'm a Case Student I'm sticking it out on the Hill instead of heading closer to downtown (thus spending my parent's money in Cleveland Heights rather than Cleveland proper).

 

Finally, I don't think it's about filling the gap between Public Sqr and E. 55th. You have University Circle and CSU as two potential building blocks now connected the Euclid corridor project. Getting Case Students and CSU students to co-mingle with the Clinic, downtown and U.C. would do a good deal more than trying to get companies from downtown to spread out onto the Euclid (companies that tend to think Cleveland stops at e.13th anyway)

 

I think you're underestimating you people.  They are a bit more "gritty" than we assume they are.  Not everyone wants to live in the 'burbs.

 

I've been looking at homes in Hough and I've seen more than my share of young, white, Asian, gay, young families (regardless of race) out looking at homes.  Some are serious as I've seen peeps with contractors sizing up homes.

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^I would certainly like to know which developers and tech firms have been looking to do something in midtown. Could you be specific and also let us know how serious each developer was and what obstacles prevented them from going forward (other than the credit crunch).

 

Are you asking for a post or a research project?

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It seems like these hundred units, combined with a too-small aquarium, are the two things that will finally reduce Cleveland to rubble. 

 

Why just why??  What value does this post add?

 

How many off topic speeches do we need to have? Sheesh!  I feel like (a taller) MayDay today! :whip:

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I think you make some very good points, weepinwillow, and sorry if I understated development interest in that stretch. I realize that MidTown has done a good job of focusing attention on the neighborhood and drawing in interest for business relocation. That should not be underestimated, and I think we will see major holes plugged within that stretch, although I still believe, best-case scenario, we're looking at 10 years before it starts to feel like a wholly continuous corridor.

 

Just two notes, and beyond that I more or less agree. First, I cannot for one imagine that the area between E. 55 and the Clinic are going to be the common meeting ground of Case and CSU students anytime soon. I could be absolutely wrong, and I would definitely love to see something mixed-use and student-oriented somewhere in that area, but with so many gaps along the streetscape, I doubt that the East 60s are going to be at the top of the list for a development of that sort, at least not yet. I just can't imagine Case students who choose Cedar Fairmount or Coventry over University Circle would be willing to move down to the East 60s or 70s unless the development was absolutely spectacular. At least not yet.

 

I would be more inclined to focus our resources to build out residential in the 100s and 110s to try to lure kids down the hill and in the 20s and 30s to build the scant residential base of Cleveland State (and hopefully to fill the ugly surface lots on Prospect in the 30s to shore up the beautiful existing housing stock there). After that, the next most obvious connector to me would be to plug the upper 40s and lower 50s with mixed-use retail and residential and rehab some of the existing building stock; you could do a spectacular, HUGE-scaled project in a one-block radius from the Agora alone. Whatever we do, it makes sense to make it asset-based, and I am not sure if I see the assets that we would be building from in the East 60s or 70s.

 

Second, do keep in mind that this is assisted living, not a shelter. This is not going to look 2100 Lakeside nor like Riverside or Lakeside. This type of development is usually not fancy, but the ones that have been set up in Cleveland have at the very least looked more like traditional apartment complexes than shelters or "projects" (check out http://www.socfdncleveland.org/OurFocusAreas/SupportiveHousing/HousingFirst/tabid/310/Default.aspx and http://www.edeninc.org/housingfirst.html).

 

I work next to one downtown (1850 Superior), and it's actually a really cute building that was recently renovated. I don't think the average Clevelander knows that these are low-income facilities at all (let alone the suburbanites), so I don't think they defacto stigmatize a neighborhood (I certainly don't think the Famicos building is adversely impacting either the Avenue District or the Quarter).

 

That's why I think design standards are key; advocating that they conform to existing zoning regulations and create some kind of ground-floor retail could be pivotal in how a passing suburbanite views them.

 

 

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It seems like these hundred units, combined with a too-small aquarium, are the two things that will finally reduce Cleveland to rubble.

 

Boy, it's a good thing you don't succumb to hyperbole.


"Save the planet. Move to the city." -- The Downtowner podcast

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While I personally am also still unsure about all these new "plans" for midtown, I have to say that I didn't know the 1850 Superior building was low-income housing, and I live 4 blocks away!  I mean, my neighborhood is the PERFECT example of mixed income housing.  We've got our townhomes, the Reserve Square market-rate apartments, St. Clair place apartments (Section 8, correct?) the CMHA Bohn Tower, and the transitional homeless shelter (still not sure quite what the definition of it is) near E. 15th and Superior.  I guess perhaps we'd all be more comfortable with these midtown plans if there were some market-rate real estate announced as well, but remember, the CMHA and Section 8 housing was in my 'hood way before I was!

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^Point taken (and a good one at that!). 

 

We all want to see this city succeed.  We all want the best options for future residents and businesses along the Corridor.  However, my biggest fear about the developments under scrutiny (by us) is that they will hinder the future growth of the area.  With the investment put in by the taxpayers into this corridor, it should be able to be enjoyed by all, and not just the affluent.  But will these developments stifle future developments that have not even come to the table for the corridor yet?  I guess only time will tell.

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It seems like these hundred units, combined with a too-small aquarium, are the two things that will finally reduce Cleveland to rubble. 

 

Boy, it's a good thing you don't succumb to hyperbole.

 

Or you to dry wit. :wink:

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^I would certainly like to know which developers and tech firms have been looking to do something in midtown. Could you be specific and also let us know how serious each developer was and what obstacles prevented them from going forward (other than the credit crunch).

 

I think this is better left to MidTown people to discuss, as I don't know what is common knowledge, and what was more underwraps. I can think of two inkling's of projects one dealing with the piece of land on the other side of the bridge that would have been health oriented and another one that could have been housing or office close to where Billie Lawless' talking chicken was.

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I still don't understand the frustration here ... The number of affordable housing units in the Gordon Square Arts District exceeds the numbers here; many of those units are directly over the storefronts, and development there seems to be anything but stigmatized.

 

As X noted, this is a model that actually provides a lot of additional support services and transitioning individuals out of poverty; this is not Caprini Green going up on Euclid. This is 70 units for single people ... 70 residents are going to destroy development opportunities along Euclid? I know I'll probably get lynched, but I think this is a potentially good location for this type of project. Access to reliable frequent mass transit service that connects the two largest employment centers in town seems like a no-brainer when trying to transition people out of extreme poverty. The program already boasts a 99% success rate in moving people permanently out of homelessness; I can only think that access to mass transit improves the odds for these people. From a social services perspective, I think it's actually pretty spot-on.

 

From a community development standpoint, I can't really say what adverse impact this will have on the corridor. You guys could be absolutely right. But the sheer VOLUME of frontage along Euclid that needs to be filled leads me to believe that this is not going to hamper the overall development of the corridor. Even if you had the rather robust development demand going on downtown, without a credit crunch or global financial crisis, and even if you focused exclusively on renovating buildings and filling gaps between Public Square and E. 55th Street, you're looking at years and years of work ... I don't think 20 years would be out of the question. Extend that development effort to the border of East Cleveland ... we have a TON of space to play with.

 

The fact is, no one has really been clamoring for development opportunities between E. 55th and the E. 70s. And I can't imagine that fallow lots and crumbling factories were really going to attract developers in a way that new housing (albeit low-income) and a major healthcare institution (albeit in the over-stigmatized field of mental health) can't. Increased ridership, eyes on the street, daytime and evening population in a currently largely abandoned swath of land ... what am I missing?

 

I think we should focus our efforts more on demanding quality design standards for the project and ongoing upkeep of the corridor. To me, advocating zoning conformity, inclusion of ground-level retail, avoidance of pointless dead spaces, an outright ban on surface parking lots fronting the street, etc ... these seem more reasonable arguments to make. Going in with guns blazing about why these projects are horrible for Euclid may just ring shrill for council leaders who've been around for DECADES where few wanted to develop anything in this area.

 

Final point, to suggest that mental health and transitional housing services are good things but should be tucked away where they won't offend anyone with money ... well, that strikes me as elitist. Not trying to name-call here, and I recognize people's very valid concerns, but I do think we need to stop and think about who we're developing this corridor FOR ... a representative population of the city of Cleveland or a wealthy sliver of population who may be interested in living here in a decade or so.

 

 

 

 

You make several very good points I can agree with....However....Since when has wanting Cleveland's grand and main....and very storied avenue to have something of the best quality in design and what it offers to promote a new population in that area......become about being elitist?

 

It seems that society is soooooooo used to shooting for way below zero these days, that when someone promotes ideas or values that are AT or a little above zero, say ten degrees above....they're accused of being an 'elitist'  It is as though we have lowered standards or expectations on everything in ever way..and when they get back to average...  Someone thinks it is snobbish. My how complacency helps foster that attitude.

 

The fact is, you cannot deny the stigma attached to some of the projects proposed in this area. And, while there is a need for these institutions, they do not need to be located on what will beacon as our main thoroughfare to the whole world.

 

Do we want to have that part of Euclid  be a tribute to societal dysfunctional treatment? There is no nobility in boasting such social failure. But, as for being 'elite' Euclid was once one of the richest avenues in the world...  Simply wishing some institutions be located just off the main avenue is hardly being elitist. To do other than the best this showcase avenue can be, is insulting to the grand history of the avenue. There is nothing wrong with wanting to aspire for something more for this avenue...more than mediocrity.

 

What next? Wal-Mart, Lowes, and Taco Bell parked right next door to Severance!  HALL, that is....

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I don't think demanding good design is elitist ... particularly when that design has the interest of a cross-section of society in mind (thinking of the "Design for the Other 90%" concept). But there is a big difference between demanding good design and outright protesting particular lot uses. Everyone here is entitled to their personal opinions about best use and about best location for the proposed projects. But saying "Transitional housing doesn't belong on Euclid Avenue period" is not the same as saying "Said housing should front the sidewalk and be between 5 and 7 stories in height", etc. And yes, sorry, but I do think it's elitist to say, yes, we want a row of million-dollar townhomes here, but no, all people with mental health issues and who are homeless, go directly to Cedar Avenue, do not pass Go. I absolutely understand your points, and maybe you're right that your views are just in the best interest of the corridor ... but you can be right and still be elitist :)

 

Frankly, I don't want another Millionaire's Row. The most successful nabes in Cleveland have wide income distributions, with wealthy people living in close proximity to people of VERY limited means, and that lack of pretention is one of the things I love about this city. The last decade has seen a steady investment in places in downtown, Tremont, Ohio City and Detroit Shoreway, despite the abundance of public housing projects, social service organizations and low-income populations; meanwhile, Bratenahl lost more than 5% of its population. I'm not saying that the presence of disadvantaged populations has made them more desirable. But I am saying that an area can still be desirable even with these residents, and that the absence of these residents hardly ensures success for the corridor. Personally, I would rather show off a main street that welcomes everyone, regardless of their background, than to hold land fallow with a dream of creating a Magnificent Mile or recreating a Millionaire's Row.

 

As for being worried about design, I am too. We should definitely be demanding the utmost design standards possible, both to begin to build a contiguous corridor of mixed uses AND so that all residents, employees, etc., along Euclid Avenue enjoy the maximum benefit they can from the street and from other tenants.

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Who's said they want a Millionaire's Row?  It's a good strawman, but not an argument anyone has made.  People are saying that it is unlikely that we will have a the kind of neighborhood you say you want, one with a wide distribution of incomes, if we start with a series of low income housing projects and a mental health facility.  You may not agree, fine, but don't misrepresent what people are saying.

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To be fair, I want a millionaire's row. I agree that having a mix of income levels living in close proximity works better than sectioning off whole groups, I just don't think wanting some groups off the Euclid Corridor is out of bounds. In an ideal world I guess the market takes care of this, but perhaps we don't have that kind of luxury yet.

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The most successful nabes in Cleveland have wide income distributions, with wealthy people living in close proximity to people of VERY limited means, and that lack of pretention is one of the things I love about this city. The last decade has seen a steady investment in places in downtown, Tremont, Ohio City and Detroit Shoreway, despite the abundance of public housing projects, social service organizations and low-income populations; meanwhile, Bratenahl lost more than 5% of its population. I'm not saying that the presence of disadvantaged populations has made them more desirable. But I am saying that an area can still be desirable even with these residents, and that the absence of these residents hardly ensures success for the corridor.

 

Some could argue the success of these neighborhoods.  I know many see the abundance of public housing etc., as having really held these neighborhoods back, and a deterrent to moving into a home there.  I know many from out of town (while loving the city) have had a hard time looking at these neighborhoods as livable places due to this.  I have witnessed since the 80's people screaming about gentrification.  Yet why is w. 25th street basically the same as when I was interning for Ohio City Developement 15 yrs ago?

 

8shades you make some good points, but when you say "representative population of the city, I think that way of thinking is only helping to determine what the population will continue to be (the population is not representative of the people employed in the city, most of those people live in the suburbs).  With what seems like an overabundance of public and subsidized housing everywhere, and poor and rundown neighborhoods, and social service agencies, how could the city be anything but representative of a poor population.  I guess because I have seen the opposite here in DC and witnessed the MASS gentrification that DC has experienced in order to cater to its white collar crowd, and while succeeding in drawing large scale development into the city, and lowering the murder rate by shifting some of that population to PG county (MD), there really is nowhere affordable here unless you live in a dangerous, non-gentrified area.   

 

Cleveland is not in danger of such things since it is a totally different set of dynamics, but I also don't think that everything has to cater to the poor population, or that it is elitist to want different or to change the dynamic of some of these areas (that have so much potential).  I for one would like to see the day when Cleveland is not on the list of poorest cities.  I realize shifting this around isn't really changing anything (although there is a pretty big disparity, between the city and the suburbs), but you also don't have to only cater to that population.     

 

Bratenahl losing population doesn't really tell me anything since most every part of the Cleveland area has lost population.  I think the most significant loses have been in inner ring "former" mid income areas due to the influx of "lower incomes".  Why do you think Medina and Loraine County's have continued to grow when the region has not?

 

There needs to be a balance.                           

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I don't disagree with any of that. I am equally hopeful about a repopulation of the city. I guess my confusion lies in forumers' seeming belief that a mental health facility and SEVENTY units of transitional housing are going to deter development of a six-mile corridor (or even the one-mile section between E. 55th and E. 81st). I absolutely understand people's concerns that this will stigmatize Euclid Ave. (or the upper Midtown component of it), but it just seems like a disproportionate response to the scale of the project. 70 units of housing. To people who will be receiving significant support services and will very likely appreciate moving from shelters or the streets into new and clean units. Who will likely maintain the units and be good neighbors and citizens. 70 units on a street that could pretty easily accommodate a couple thousand additional residents. A fraction of the units that are going up in the Uptown area. A fraction of the units in the new apartment complex near CSU in Lower Midtown. A fraction of the units getting built out along Lower Euclid. About equivalent to the new luxury condos and apartments going up in "Collegetown".

 

I wholeheartedly believe everyone here is welcome to their opinions on the topic; from my perspective, I just want to make sure that when we hear words like "mental institution" or "housing for the formerly homeless", we're not being reactionary or losing a sense of perspective about the development happening elsewhere along the corridor. It is and will be mixed-income. Given the current market environment, I applaud that projects are moving forward downtown and University Circle, let alone in a less-proven area for residential properties. 

 

And willyboy is right ... we don't have to worry about mass gentrification anytime soon ... barring some gigantic shift in demographic patterns, not in the next next several decades. But I continue to believe that this is the upside of the slow market growth of the industrial Midwest; we have the opportunity to plan for gentrification well before it happens and to ensure that low-income individuals are not pushed out of areas with the strongest potential for out-pricing.

 

 

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I don't think demanding good design is elitist ... particularly when that design has the interest of a cross-section of society in mind (thinking of the "Design for the Other 90%" concept). But there is a big difference between demanding good design and outright protesting particular lot uses. Everyone here is entitled to their personal opinions about best use and about best location for the proposed projects. But saying "Transitional housing doesn't belong on Euclid Avenue period" is not the same as saying "Said housing should front the sidewalk and be between 5 and 7 stories in height", etc. And yes, sorry, but I do think it's elitist to say, yes, we want a row of million-dollar townhomes here, but no, all people with mental health issues and who are homeless, go directly to Cedar Avenue, do not pass Go. I absolutely understand your points, and maybe you're right that your views are just in the best interest of the corridor ... but you can be right and still be elitist :)

 

Frankly, I don't want another Millionaire's Row. The most successful nabes in Cleveland have wide income distributions, with wealthy people living in close proximity to people of VERY limited means, and that lack of pretention is one of the things I love about this city. The last decade has seen a steady investment in places in downtown, Tremont, Ohio City and Detroit Shoreway, despite the abundance of public housing projects, social service organizations and low-income populations; meanwhile, Bratenahl lost more than 5% of its population. I'm not saying that the presence of disadvantaged populations has made them more desirable. But I am saying that an area can still be desirable even with these residents, and that the absence of these residents hardly ensures success for the corridor. Personally, I would rather show off a main street that welcomes everyone, regardless of their background, than to hold land fallow with a dream of creating a Magnificent Mile or recreating a Millionaire's Row.

 

As for being worried about design, I am too. We should definitely be demanding the utmost design standards possible, both to begin to build a contiguous corridor of mixed uses AND so that all residents, employees, etc., along Euclid Avenue enjoy the maximum benefit they can from the street and from other tenants.

 

Who is talking about having a millionaires row? I only referred back to that era to illustrate what the difference is between 'elite' and an upper middle to middle environment--or above average and mediocrity---which is all I suggested that should be the aspiration for this avenue. That is hardly elitist.

 

I am really discouraged how many people have bastardized that word and associated it with all that is bad or 'somehow' anti-lower income....... Just as I dislike how the word "liberal" has been bastardized to associate anything left of center as being the road to hell. It is not being 'elitist' as in your use of that word, to aspire for more than mediocrity. I don't have a stupendous income, and one does not need to have one to have higher aspirations than mediocre.

 

Personally, I am not flat out opposed to such places you are saying people are flat out opposed to. I just feel that in a well planned environment, they could stand to occupy not the showcase avenue that will define a lot of what Cleveland is, or aspires to be, no matter what walk of life the participants who make it happen, come from.

 

I understand about stronger neighborhoods encompassing a diverse income make-up, etc, but we can have that on this avenue....without placing some of these institutions right on it.

 

I agree with you a thousand percent that if such will be the happening on Euclid, that it should be well designed as you so well outlined. But the bottom line is...that if we want to make this a diverse avenue in every stretch of the way...Future plans cannot keep catering to mostly one half, and the half that is often catered to is not offering the broader and diverse demographic I would envision for this or any segment of the avenue. But like you said.. if it is bound to be what it will be, then by all means, promote well designs....not 'suburbs-in-the-city' designs.

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The most successful nabes in Cleveland have wide income distributions, with wealthy people living in close proximity to people of VERY limited means, and that lack of pretention is one of the things I love about this city. The last decade has seen a steady investment in places in downtown, Tremont, Ohio City and Detroit Shoreway, despite the abundance of public housing projects, social service organizations and low-income populations; meanwhile, Bratenahl lost more than 5% of its population. I'm not saying that the presence of disadvantaged populations has made them more desirable. But I am saying that an area can still be desirable even with these residents, and that the absence of these residents hardly ensures success for the corridor.

 

Some could argue the success of these neighborhoods.  I know many see the abundance of public housing etc., as having really held these neighborhoods back, and a deterrent to moving into a home there.  I know many from out of town (while loving the city) have had a hard time looking at these neighborhoods as livable places due to this.  I have witnessed since the 80's people screaming about gentrification.  Yet why is w. 25th street basically the same as when I was interning for Ohio City Developement 15 yrs ago?

 

8shades you make some good points, but when you say "representative population of the city, I think that way of thinking is only helping to determine what the population will continue to be (the population is not representative of the people employed in the city, most of those people live in the suburbs).  With what seems like an overabundance of public and subsidized housing everywhere, and poor and rundown neighborhoods, and social service agencies, how could the city be anything but representative of a poor population.  I guess because I have seen the opposite here in DC and witnessed the MASS gentrification that DC has experienced in order to cater to its white collar crowd, and while succeeding in drawing large scale development into the city, and lowering the murder rate by shifting some of that population to PG county (MD), there really is nowhere affordable here unless you live in a dangerous, non-gentrified area.   

 

Cleveland is not in danger of such things since it is a totally different set of dynamics, but I also don't think that everything has to cater to the poor population, or that it is elitist to want different or to change the dynamic of some of these areas (that have so much potential).  I for one would like to see the day when Cleveland is not on the list of poorest cities.  I realize shifting this around isn't really changing anything (although there is a pretty big disparity, between the city and the suburbs), but you also don't have to only cater to that population.     

 

Bratenahl losing population doesn't really tell me anything since most every part of the Cleveland area has lost population.  I think the most significant loses have been in inner ring "former" mid income areas due to the influx of "lower incomes".  Why do you think Medina and Loraine County's have continued to grow when the region has not?

 

There needs to be a balance.                           

 

This is basically what I am saying, all you mention above.

 

 

Many seem to forget... How was the stigma attached to low income housing, etc. born? Every legend has a basis of truth.

 

People, no matter what color, race, income level.... feared dropping property values and safety, when they witness the behavior associated with some people...and NOT all.. (so PLEASE.....don't anyone draw the profiling card...but it only takes one or two apples to spoil a bunch) who are often a part of such communities.

 

I have lived next to this many times and it is undeniable.....you cannot pretend like it is not a concern or factor in influencing where people want to live. Everytime I was near this..... noise at totally inappropriate hours, inappropriate behavior, lack of simple maintenance on a property, throwing trash on the street, pelting my poor dog with rocks....or worse.

 

So, maybe a good institution along Euclid should be started to teach some people, who obviously had no parental guidance... how to be good neighbors and behave properly in a communal setting...and not use their freedoms to harm and impose their anti-social behavior upon others---but to help them instead. If people don't respect basic respect unto thy neighbor... I don't want to invest thousands to live next to that.

 

Again, I am not saying all the above do not know how to function in a healthy functioning neighborhood, but it takes a small spark to start a fire....and to start the attached stigmas. Yes, there are idiots who live everywhere... But I can't deny the fact that I have experienced more of this when I live near low income.

 

Many will attribute such behavior with the fact that someone is poor..  I agree, it can walk hand in hand (cause/effect)...but maybe it is more about upbringing. When I traveled around the world, I discovered many poor communities that were actually some of the best and charming places--great food too! Just because one is 'poor' does not mean one has to be the kind of persons who are a part of the problems I mentioned above. Pride is free. Doesn't cost a dime... But if you wonder why their is a stigma placed on the lower income, it is obvious.

 

Is it a fair label? Probably, probably not...Will I get accused of being a "profiler", "racist", "anti poor", "elitist" etc..etc?"...Just because I have a certain standard that desires a more harmonious and peaceful socially redeeming community? Probably...but only by those who do not take the time to actually think about any validity in what I am saying. I will not give up my right to have my thoughts on such an issue, just because they do not conform to what someone else's view of a non elitist, profiler, and the rest of those words above, is.  It is easier to label someone than to think. Having said that, I did not label anyone in what I wrote here. I simply pointed out a social stigma attached to low income, etc... that people want to tip toe around and not address as part of an underlying cause why a lot of people have their opinions about low income housing---and the rest of the associated mix---people are concerned of happening on Euclid. I didn't label anyone unfairly....  no more than it is a fair label to label someone else 'elitist' just because they aspire for their neighborhood to have a bit of a higher standard and be a positive example, that would attract those from all walks of life to want to be a part of.

 

Deer fear humans... and have pretty much become nocturnal animals. Why? Because they fear the hunter, and thus, humans in general. They learn through experiences, just like many people have learned through experience that too often, there are negative attachments to low income housing. Sometimes we can be too politically correct until many of the obvious truths get buried, ignored, and left unabated.

 

Bottom line.. You are a good neighbor, respect my right to reasonable peaceful living, take pride in your home/neighborhood.. I will do the same. I don't care who you are or where you are from or how much you make. But if not, and you chose to behave poorly. I don't want it. This stuff factors in someone's decision to locate anywhere.

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Okay, agreed. And sorry if anyone feels I was using the term "elitist" in a derogatory way. I honestly wasn't. I simply mean favoring the interests of relatively wealthy and secure populations to the exclusion of those of relatively poor and vulnerable populations. Not assigning any negative connotation to wanting to focus attention on the "upper half" ... there are definitely some potential positives to wanting to recruit a group of people with means to this section of Euclid.

 

But I do feel like the assumption that poor individuals equal noisy, littering and/or criminal residents is a little overarching. The success of this particular model suggests that these particular residents will not likely be "problem residents". And maybe many, many greater Clevelanders DO have these preconceptions and prejudices ... but I don't think that means we should cater to them. There are a variety of avenues for addressing problem residents if they show up ... avenues that are a little less far-reaching than redirecting the project elsewhere.

 

As for the "good neighbor" program ... Ugh ... Presupposing that poor people need to learn about noise control and proper upkeep of facilities is pretty patronistic. Why people in affordable housing but not people who live in lower Euclid? Or at the very least, a student population that has a lot less vested in maintaining property or curbing their volume? Cleveland Heights tried to launch a very similar "Good Neighbors" program aimed at Section 8 residents (but overlooking the student population in the very same neighborhood) and it was quickly and rightly abandoned. These individuals will already have much in the way of training as a component of the housing program itself; I would recommend we not begin assuming they're going to wreak havoc on the E. 70s before they move in (or before ground is even broken on their building).

 

I promise to try to be quiet on this thread now (at least for the remainder of the day :)). And sorry if I've hijacked it. Everyone is entitled to their opinion; I guess I've just been discouraged not so much by what people on here are advocating but more by 1. how vehement people seem to be about the projects' dire consequences and 2. how one-sided the discussion seems to be. I guess I'm just surprised is all.

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8 Shades...You have not hijacked the thread. I think you make some points well worth discussion. I am not having a go at you. Nor am I saying what I say is the gospel. Your thoughts just sparked a lot of semi-counter thoughts.

 

Students, section 8, monetarily rich, or challenged, low income, red, white, black, purple, yellow and strawberry, right, center, left of center, right of center...up and down...No matter what the case, indeed, bad neighbors and things that are associated and proven to devalue property, can come from all angles and directions. And, while I acknowledge that, at the same time I cannot, from over and over and over and over experience, deny the reality right before my very eyes... that the places I have most experienced this behavior is near the low income areas. The behavior becomes disproportionate to the population in that given area. I did not profile them ALL to be this way, if you read what I posted. I have friends who have nothing and are wonderful.

 

If I were a good neighbor living in a low income situation, that defies all these stereo-types, I would be ashamed of those around me who are acting this way making it look bad for many others at the same level. At the same time, I would feel compelled to try and do something about taking responsibility to curb such behavior--because I would not want to be thrown into the mix. And I would not blame someone else, for formulating a negative opinion about that particular environment, if they witness it all the time. I would not blame them or think they were profiling. Those who behave the worse are profiling themselves with their bad behavior that draws negative attention. People judge by actions....all of us have done this, it is only natural. Sometimes it is about being cautious and smart...sometimes it can be presumptuous...but the fact remains, it happens.

 

When people are given a lot of things without having worked hard to earn it...There tends to be a less than enthusiastic ambition to maintain it. (indeed, this happens at the white collar level too when corporate welfare is abused) I am different because I feel if I do not own something...if I were renting...I would want to take all the better care of it just because of the fact it does not belong to me. And, I would take full responsibility and accountability for any friends I may invite over who may cause any kind of trouble. The reality is, however, I know those with that attitude are the exception when it comes to the average renter..or low income purchaser. They have the money for the payments, but struggle to get what is needed for ongoing upkeep. Should such deny a place to live? No...  But...

 

This sort of decline has started all over again in Warren, Ohio with new low income, less than fair market value homes that were built less than 12 years ago. Already, they are looking shabby (not just because of lack of upkeep..but because they were just downright crapola in quality)..and the behavior follows. Sad for those who are just wanting a clean, safe, comfortable reasonably peaceful place to live. Anti-social illegal neighbor behavior can get you kicked out of the neighborhood in England. And until those who cause a problem learn how to act, they may not return. Imposting bad neighbor behavior on others is not an entitlement, freedom, or right. Its just illegal and wrong.

 

I think how this relates to this thread is learning why many are opposed to certain kinds of projects along Euclid...and what are some of the breeders of those concerns. At the end of the day, I think everyone, no matter who we are, wants to be proud of Euclid. Those who don't care..well that is what fuels the potential problems.

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Note: I don't think I've ever heard a fiery Sound of Ideas (as "fiery" as Sound of Ideas can get, anyway .. maybe a bit of an overstatement) like this one. It's a pretty hot-button issue, but I'm glad discussion is being opened up about this because I think it's necessary.

 

 

The Sound of Ideas®

Where is Euclid Avenue Headed?

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Topics: Economy, Politics, Health, Other

 

<a href=http://audio2.ideastream.org/wcpn/2009/07/0728soi.mp3>Download MP3</a> / RSS / Podcast

 

Cleveland's Euclid Avenue facelift and the corridor's Health Line were originally pitched as economic catalysts that would bring people, money and jobs to the city. Development is happening, but it has taken a turn many didn't expect: Where city business leaders imagined new retail, restaurants and condos, they're instead seeing housing for the homeless and for the elderly and a 14-acre psychiatric hospital. To put it mildly, not everyone's excited. Tuesday morning at 9, we're searching for Euclid Avenue's new identity.

 

Guests

Tom Bier executive-in-residence, Levin College of Urban Affairs, Cleveland State University

William Denihan CEO, Cuyahoga County Community Mental Health Board

Chris Warren Chief of Regional Development, City of Cleveland

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good stuff jpop. Its good finally hearing the argument from the people actually involved... I have to say that I was not very receptive to the Hospital when first proposed, but I'm certainly warming up to it.

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I personally don't have a problem with mental care facilities. However, I have a serious problem with Bill Denihan not understanding that the same reasons for them deciding to locate there is why it's a horrible choice.  Leave our "shovel ready" land alone.

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I personally don't have a problem with mental care facilities. However, I have a serious problem with Bill Denihan not understanding that the same reasons for them deciding to locate there is why it's a horrible choice.  Leave our "shovel ready" land alone.

 

there wasn't exactly a line around the block of businesses waiting to develop that shovel ready land. I understand the ultimate vision for the area but while the free market was just, 'dipping it toes in the water' (Bier) the state was ready jump in.

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No matter how hard they tried, there is no getting around the stigma associated with a mental hospital.  Those are real concerns... the woman who stated she would be scared to ride her bike from Cleveland Heights to downtown is just one voice of likely many.  Some suburbanites are already "afraid" to be in Cleveland in the first place; well, here's another reason to be afraid- this time, on our grand corridor, which was recently rehabbed to draw and attract businesses and residents.  500 jobs or not, I guess I'm still not convinced that the general public will buy into this as being a good idea.  But time is a tool, and we shall see.

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No matter how hard they tried, there is no getting around the stigma associated with a mental hospital. Those are real concerns... the woman who stated she would be scared to ride her bike from Cleveland Heights to downtown is just one voice of likely many. Some suburbanites are already "afraid" to be in Cleveland in the first place; well, here's another reason to be afraid- this time, on our grand corridor, which was recently rehabbed to draw and attract businesses and residents. 500 jobs or not, I guess I'm still not convinced that the general public will buy into this as being a good idea. But time is a tool, and we shall see.

 

I totally agree. I'm so against both of these going here, it's not even funny.

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Honestly, if designed well (big if), I doubt most of the general public will even know what it is.  I grew up by a mental hospital.  It had zero negative impact on anything.  The only thing it did was give the local kids fodder for jokes, about where so and so is going to end up, or jokes about mass break outs by the crazy people... which obviously never happened.

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Subsidized housing is far more troubling than mental hospitals.  That's my real fear.

Why?  Not everyone who lives in subsidizing housing or owns subsidized housing is bad, careless or doesn't care about the property that they live in or own.

 

That's like me saying to you, "you didn't grow up in the manner, type of home, neighborhood or status in which I did, so who are you to be worried?"

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Subsidized housing is far more troubling than mental hospitals.  That's my real fear.

Why?  Not everyone who lives in subsidizing housing or owns subsidized housing is bad, careless or doesn't care about the property that they live in or own.

 

That's like me saying to you, "you didn't grow up in the manner, type of home, neighborhood or status in which I did, so who are you to be worried?"

 

As opposed to going through all of the reasons again, See the previous 5 pages.

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Subsidized housing is far more troubling than mental hospitals.  That's my real fear.

Why?  Not everyone who lives in subsidizing housing or owns subsidized housing is bad, careless or doesn't care about the property that they live in or own.

 

That's like me saying to you, "you didn't grow up in the manner, type of home, neighborhood or status in which I did, so who are you to be worried?"

 

As opposed to going through all of the reasons again, See the previous 5 pages.

WillyB, my friend, we're going to have to disagree.

 

I do think that the "development" plans for Euclid along with Prospect and Chester need to looked at again with a fine tooth comb, but I personally think mixed income and diverse areas are much more vibrant appealing and stable than exclusive neighborhoods.

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you know what? speaking ideally of course, if the psych hospital uses new, cutting edge urban design, including euclid street level businesses in front like a cafe and shop that perhaps are tied into the hospital and put those folks into public work experiences in them, and if the building form/materials just looks good in general, this can actually be something all clevelanders could be proud of.

 

i realize that is asking a lot, but as of now the potential is there.

 

otoh, if they just take some old hospital plans off the shelf and slap it up there, well that's another story and yet another lost opportunity.

 

realistically, perhaps something like that could at least be met halfway?

 

 

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Subsidized housing is far more troubling than mental hospitals.  That's my real fear.

Why?  Not everyone who lives in subsidizing housing or owns subsidized housing is bad, careless or doesn't care about the property that they live in or own.

 

That's like me saying to you, "you didn't grow up in the manner, type of home, neighborhood or status in which I did, so who are you to be worried?"

 

As opposed to going through all of the reasons again, See the previous 5 pages.

WillyB, my friend, we're going to have to disagree.

 

I do think that the "development" plans for Euclid along with Prospect and Chester need to looked at again with a fine tooth comb, but I personally think mixed income and diverse areas are much more vibrant appealing and stable than exclusive neighborhoods.

 

Disagree?  You asked why, which has been debated for the past 5 pages.  The reasoning why many people don't see this as a good fit is given there, the reasons are not suddenly going to be different. 

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