As a connecting agent in this uniquely diverse community located in downtown Cleveland, the Campus District actively engages residents, businesses institutional stakeholders in ongoing dialogue, issue-solving, and hands-on improvement projects that result in collaborative projects that benefit everyone.
Community Building & Advocacy
The Campus District of Cleveland is a melting pot of students, artists, professionals, businesses, social service agencies and people experiencing homelessness. It is also home to one of the first arts districts in Cleveland. CDI utilizes community network building strategies to build bridges between these diverse populations and tackle issues head on with open community engagement planning sessions.
DI and stakeholders envisioned and implemented the Banner Up! community arts project to help bring two disparate community stakeholder groups together: artists living and working in studios on Superior Avenue and men living in the emergency homeless shelter at 2100 Lakeside Avenue. Volunteers from the community including professional artists, students, and men from the homeless shelter worked together to create the art that will be reproduced on 50+ banners adorning Superior Avenue. The community raised over $9,000 from its online CrowdRise campaign from over 90 individual and business donors to match a Neighborhood Connections grant. Watch the video here: Banner Up!
Superior Streetscape Team
This truly grassroots project started when a resident expressed concern over the state of public art on Superior Ave. Additional residents rallied to the cause and met with Land Studio and the City Architect's office to see what could be done. It was decided to address the public art in the scope of the entire streetscape, and the Streetscape Team was formed. Campus District has received funding from the Dominion Foundation and Cleveland Neighborhood Progress to get started on transforming Superior Ave. tree lawns into luscious gardens. The 2015 landscaping project brought together CSU students, artists and people experiencing homelessness to successfully transform public space. This year the group continues their beautiful work and as they team up with women from the Northeast Regional Correctional Center.
Shaping and Sharing Superior : A Guide to Neighborhood Action
Campus District is working with Kent State University Urban Design Collaborative and area residents to create a collection of neighborhood improvement projects. Campus District convened neighborhood stakeholders to generate ideas on the topics of safety and comfort, art and identity, creating welcoming space for interaction, and programming. Ideas from these visioning sessions then informed a Guidebook to Neighborhood Action which Campus District and neighborhood residents will use to implement future projects.
In response to concerns from businesses and residents, CDI engaged social service and shelter organizations in creating a Public Bathroom Committee. Neighborhood social service agencies and homeless shelters - Bishop Cosgrove Center, Care Alliance, Frontline Services, and Lutheran Metropolitan Ministry (LMM) – have been working together for on developing a plan for a public bathroom to alleviate unsanitary conditions.CDI has worked with partners to map "splash zones" and the committee is the the process of verifying funds to test and gather data with temporary port-a-potties prior to permanent investments.
Cuyahoga Metropolitan Housing Authority (CMHA), as part of its Central Choice Neighborhood Planning process, committed to creating a local hiring program to fill a major need for the Central Neighborhood. Within the neighborhood, 69% of residents live below the poverty line, 33% are unemployed, and 98% of those who are employed have to travel outside of the neighborhood to work.
The Campus District is home to three anchor institutions: Cleveland State University, Cuyahoga Community College, and St. Vincent Charity Medical Center. Because of the Central Neighborhood’s location within and around the Campus District, these anchor institutions committed to being part of the program as part of their strong history of investing in the community. The three institutions will work alongside Campus District, Inc. and CMHA’s highly successful Jobs-Plus Program, which offers on-site job training and placement services along with rent incentives, to connect residents to entry-level jobs to Central Neighborhood CMHA residents. After initial development of the program, the potential exists for program expansion to other local businesses in the Campus District and in the nearby Health Tech Corridor. The job linkage program is expected to strengthen neighborhood connections while also improving self-sufficiency, household earnings, and economic opportunity.
Early summer 2014 Campus District, Inc. learned that the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority had engaged consultant Parsons Brinkerhoff to study the possible closing of the East 34th Street Transit Station and the two East 79th Street stations. CDI convened stakeholders from the community for numerous meetings with RTA staff and then made a presentation to the GCRTA Board on why the station is critical to the community. Campus District community leaders pointed to the $190 million of investments underway and the continued increase in population as reasons to relocate the station to a more visible and accessible site, however GCRTA determined that the station cannot be moved.
Following a nearly a year-long campaign, the RTA Board of Trustees passed a resolution that it will design and build a new East 34th St. Rapid Transit Station. The new station will be ADA accessible and provide much needed services to the Campus District community.
Back in 2013 CDI began meeting with the Cuyahoga County Bridge engineers, the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) District 12 and Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA) on a plan for the new East 22nd Street bridge that will need to be constructed over the Innerbelt when it is widened. A conceptual design and cost estimates for a 16 ft green cap on the east side of the East 22nd St. bridge for bicyclists and pedestrians were developed and presented with positive feedback on potential ability to implement with transportation alternative funding. Then in 2014, ODOT developed a new plan to create an East 22nd Street/Carnegie exit for the next phase of the Innerbelt called CCG3A. The plan calls for a concrete cap over the eastbound lanes of the Innerbelt to support an exit in which traffic could exit at East 22nd St, and cross the street on an arterial road that would lead to Carnegie Avenue. CDI proposed a modification to the plan to provide a 16 ft. wide landscaped bike/pedestrian cap on both sides of the bridge and a green roof on one third of the concrete cap for the new exit. After a round of advocacy meetings with ODOT by Campus District stakeholders with support from Downtown Cleveland Alliance and Midtown, Cleveland, ODOT approved the design. Baker International is currently doing the final design and engineering for the the CCG3A segment which includes the caps and green roof.
In 2013 the Campus District convened neighboring community development corporations, Downtown Cleveland Alliance, Historic Warehouse District and St. Clair Superior Development Corporation and city planning staff with the question “How can our near east side neighborhoods connect to the lakefront?” That question prompted the group to apply for a Transportation for Livable Communities Initiative (TLCI) planning grant from NOACA, which was awarded in 2014. The Lakefront Greenway and Downtown Connector Study is focused on three components: 1) Create a linear looped trail system along North and South Marginal Roads to facilitate travel by bicyclists and pedestrians, 2) Strengthen the connection between the lakefront and the near eastside neighborhoods of the Campus District and St. Clair Superior, and 3) Enhance east-west connectivity within the study area for bicycle and pedestrian travel.
Baker Engineering and Environmental Design Group were selected to carry out the study and the work is nearly completed. A steering committee that is representative of all stakeholders in the planning area guided the planning process. Two public meetings have been held to receive community input and a final design is completed. The design will include a hiking and biking path along North and South Marginal Roads and a connector path from the Campus District to the Lakefront.
Downtown Cleveland is a residential neighborhood growing faster than any community in the State of Ohio and the Campus District is a large part of that growth. Downtown added nearly 3,000 new residents in the last census and is on track to add over 2,000 more residents over the next two years. Between 2010 and 2014, the Campus District alone added 900 units/beds of new housing. To manage this growth and insure that the downtown neighborhoods offer the amenities needed for both residents and visitors, Downtown Cleveland Alliance (DCA) carried out a comprehensive planning process with many stakeholders including Campus District, Inc. CDI assisted with their research through public surveys, setting up stakeholder focus groups, and promoting Campus District stakeholder participation in the interactive public meetings. The Step Up Downtown plan pinpoints public realm improvements and other initiatives that will take Downtown Cleveland to the next level over the next 5-7 years.
Real Estate & Infrastructure
Campus District, Inc. has released a Request for Proposals for the historic Juvenile Court Complex located at the corner of East 22 St. and Cedar Avenue. The building is 166,750 square feet in size and sits on approximately 4.7 acres of prime land in the City of Cleveland. It was constructed in the 1930s, with a residential addition made in 1964. The building is a local landmark making it eligible for historic tax credits. The property also includes a 1.7 acre parking lot on the north side of Cedar Avenue.
The Juvenile Court Complex is centrally located on East 22nd Street within the Campus District of downtown Cleveland, a short 15 minute walk to East 9th and Euclid. It is in the heart of a thriving and ever expanding institutional and residential district with student and market rate housing being built to the north, mixed income townhouses being built to the south and east and all three of the anchor institutions along East 22nd Street investing tens of millions in their campuses. Cleveland State University (CSU), St. Vincent Charity Medical Center, and Cuyahoga Community College (Tri-C) anchor an “eds and meds” district from Euclid Avenue to Orange Avenue that is comprised of dozens of businesses and other institutions.
The Juvenile Court building is located in a busy part of the Campus District with approximately 27,000 college students attending school at CSU and Tri-C and another 15,000 people employed within the District. East 22nd Street, from Euclid to Orange is undergoing a $4.2 million infrastructure investment with new pavement with bike lanes and pedestrian amenities, planted medians, expanded sidewalks with new benches, landscaping, and public art, making East 22nd the north/south Main Street of the Campus District, directly in front of the Juvenile Court Complex.
An Informational Pre-Submittal Meeting for interested developers will be held on August 14th at 10am at Campus District, Inc. ,2254 Euclid Ave, Cleveland, OH 44115. Site Visits will be held on August 18th at 10am and 1pm and August 19th at 1pm. Please RSVP for the meeting and/or a site visit, by contacting Michelle Brzoska at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The East 22nd St. Street Rehabilitation and Streetscape project from Orange Avenue to Euclid Avenue began as an idea back in 2010 by the Campus District Board and anchor institutions. Through strategic visioning sessions, stakeholders had identified East 22nd Street as our community’s main north-south street which was key to connecting people to the Campus District’s primary assets of educational and health institutions. It began with a Transportation for Livable Communities planning grant from Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA) that created the vision for the project of East 22nd Street becoming a complete and green street with bike and pedestrian accommodations. Prominently featured in the plan were wider sidewalks, bike lanes, pedestrian amenities, new lighting, signage, public art and significant greening of the street. With leadership from Councilwoman Phyllis Cleveland, the City submitted federal applications for over $4 million of construction funding to match the City’s commitment of over $1 million to the project. During 2014, the Campus District convened stakeholder meetings to give community input on designs and functionality of the street and streetscape elements to brand the district. The project will include planted median strips, and streetscape elements such as benches, bike racks, lighting and public art.
Construction of the $4.2 million infrastructure project will began in July 2015 and the hardscape will be completed by November 2015 with plantings, signage and streetscape to be done by June 2016. This project is creating a new “Main Street” for the Campus District that will link Cleveland State University, St. Vincent Charity Medical Center and Cuyahoga Community College.
The Campus District has had over $500 million of public and private investment in the past 7 years. The next 3 years will bring another $250 million of investments. Watch for these developments over the next few years.
Downtown Cleveland Alliance has been contracted to provide business development services in Campus District. The services offered by the business development specialist include but are not limited to attracting and retaining businesses to the district; supporting the redevelopment of targeted corridors; advocating for business and property owners needs to city, county and state officials; and carrying out coordinated marketing between Campus District and Downtown Cleveland Alliance. Other new initiatives underway include identifying and recommending housing and retail opportunities and supporting Campus District’s efforts to create a Business Improvement District. Contact Jazmyn Blockson at jblockson@downtowncleveland.