Friday, June 22, 2007 at 9:44 AM
Cuyahoga County is weighing its options a week after the Cleveland Planning Commission put the brakes on a project to build a new headquarters downtown. But a final decision may come down to how the city charter is interpreted, as ideastream's Eric Wellman explains.
The county hopes to raze the Ameritrust Tower and put a new building in its place that would bring all of its employees under one roof. But the plan hit a roadblock a week ago when the city planning commission asked for more information before approving a demolition permit. The commission’s chairman Tony Coyne wants to see more detailed plans about how the county hopes to use the property.
Tony Coyne: We need to make sure at the end of the day that we’re going to have a much better project on the site than what’s there presently.
But County Commissioner Tim Hagan says it all comes down to an interpretation of the city’s charter. He believes - as a public entity that the county may be able to overrule the planning commission’s decision.
Tim Hagan: I’m not looking for a confrontation with the city bureaucracy. I think we will not move ahead unless the mayor and council president assures us that under the charter we can move ahead without acquiescence of the planning commission.
The planning commission disagrees with that interpretation of the charter, saying its approval is required for the demolition to proceed. Hagan says he’s received assurances from the mayor that there will be a resolution within a month. Eric Wellman, 90.3.
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