Posted Wednesday, January 20, 2010
Local planners are thinking big about a redesign for northeast Ohio, including Cleveland's Public Square, Oberlin's downtown and Kent along with its university. Each transformation involves hundreds of millions of dollars. Renowned architect James Corner came up with three ideas to move Public Square far beyond a rather large bus stop and into a forest, a giant hill with traffic routed underneath or a huge lattice to frame the area. Oberlin contemplates a "green arts" district and the heart of Kent would be spruced up with new retail, office and residential space. Can such face-lifts revitalize these public spaces? Will suburbanites flock to center cities reborn? What can we learn from similar efforts in Chicago and Cincinnati? Join us with your thoughts Wednesday morning at 9.
The Soldiers' and Sailors' monument commemorates the American Civil War. It was built in 1894 in downtown Cleveland's Public Square and recently underwent a vast restoration process. It is near completion and open Monday through Saturday from 9am to 4pm. A grand reopening is set for this summer. Ideastream producer Bridget De Chagas spoke with renowned architect Peter van Dijk about the meticulous process of bringing the monument back to its original grandeur.
Arts and Culture, Other, Community/Human Interest, Transportation
Photos Courtesty of The Downtown Cleveland Alliance
Click to launch gallery
Please follow our community discussion rules when composing your comments.
We have one of the largest nursery industries in the country! Why do we not capitalize and make the square a learning center for urban plants and trees.
Please Please Please jury local artists to collaborate. We are so rich in talent from this area. As a working artist I am consistently amazed at introductions the working artists from Cleveland, Ohio and the surrounding suburbs.
I would like to see the city do something that is almost free and can be done almost immediately like other cities do. That is, close off a main street on days when traffic is light, such as every Sunday. Therefore opening up the entire square and some feeder roads to pedestrian and bike traffic only.
I wish you panel all the luck in this project. However the pessimistic curmudgeon in me just says that many people that live in the Cleveland area are just not all that interested in going downtown any longer except for the handful of things that they cannot do out in their own neighborhood, like see a Cavs game or events such as that.
As for retail space, just look in Galleria or Tower City there are tons of empty spaces there. Putting in more retail space I’m afraid will just be empty.
Unfortunately I think it would just be one more place for homeless people to sleep.
I wish it were not the case because I love going downtown. I’ve just heard this type of conversation many times now and while we have made some progress it usually seems very minor in scale to what Public Square used to be.
Cleveland needs to stop being a collection of suburbs and being a city.
Has there been talk of a “river walk” like San Antonio or Pittsburgh? It seems to have worked for them?
I agree with the previous caller who mentioned the sycamore trees that were cut down a few years ago and were replaced by lollipop pear trees. Bryant park in New York kept their sycamore trees and it creates a relaxing environment in the middle of a city.
I live overlooking the square, I shop downtown and eat downtown. I run a gallery on Public Square (The Gallery at Old Stone) because I knew we needed it.
Why go downtown?
The drive say from Cleveland Circle to Downtown is a total drag: endless stop-lights, tricky traffic cameras, grim vistas, and then the hassle parking. As it’s a ghost-town you can often park on the street- if you are feeling lucky- (homeless men pop car windows in search for change for beer) or shell out $5 to $10.
Sadly public transportation is hardly an alternative.
The Cleveland Circle stop has not ONE parking spot.
Tell me when you last rode the rapid or the bus? Did you have fun?
It is not a comfy experience and no longer cheap.
Not all your buddies on board make you relax.
(Check out the new ticket dispensers. They are incomprehensible! A bad portent.)
I hate my car & love cities, but until the trip in & out is easy nobody but sportsfans & gamblers (& maybe medical vendors) will come.
Watch the Sound of Ideas during the broadcast - view now! Live video stream available during normal broadcast, Mon-Fri, 9-10 AM (EST).
Every weekday at 9:00 AM (EST), The Sound of Ideas reports the news, explains the news, and sometimes makes news. The Cleveland Press Club awarded it “Best Radio Show” in Ohio and thousands daily find it to be an indispensable source of information about what’s most important to Northeast Ohioans.
Weekdays 9:00 AM
The Ohio Channel
Weekdays 9:00 AM
Funding for Ideas/Sound of Ideas comes from The George Gund Foundation, The Cleveland Foundation, Eaton Corporation Charitable Fund, the George W. Codrington Charitable Foundation and the Nord Family Foundation.