About Idea Center® at Playhouse Square


The Idea Center at Playhouse Square is the result of a model partnership between ideastream and Playhouse Square. It is located at 1375 Euclid Avenue, in the heart of Cleveland’s Playhouse Square District, between the Allen Theatre and the United Way building. The headquarters for ideastream and the home for Playhouse Square’s arts education programs, the Idea Center is much more than a building. It is a place for creativity and education. It is a place for the arts and technology to come together in new ways. It is a place for learning, rehearsing, performing and broadcasting.

Photo Tour

Take a look inside the Idea Center by visiting the First Floor, the Second Floor and the Lower Level photo galleries.

Design Narrative

Breakthrough Collaboration and a New Model for Urban Reinvestment

The Idea Center at Playhouse Square in Cleveland, Ohio is a breakthrough, interactive center for the arts, technology, education and ideas, and a 21st century success model for urban reinvestment through a public and private partnership. The collaborative design vision for the Idea Center leverages its highly visible, street front location on Euclid Avenue, the main corridor of Cleveland’s commercial, retail and entertainment district, to inject a new, dynamic vitality to the city’s urban core.

In a partnership that is the first of its kind in the nation, ideastream and the Playhouse Square Foundation have renovated the National Register landmark building at 1375 Euclid Avenue in the heart of Cleveland’s Playhouse Square District as the Idea Center. The 1912 historic structure is transformed into a radically new kind of environment and a technology-based hub. It encompasses the 90,000 square foot Idea Center suite — an innovative, collaborative facility for ideastream and Playhouse Square Foundation’s arts education programs, integrating digital multiple media and public broadcast communication with performing arts and arts education — and 124,000 square feet of leased office space for tenants with affinities to design, high-tech, education and media uses.

The development of the Idea Center marks the continued growth and evolution of Playhouse Square, one of the country’s most highly successful cultural districts — the largest complex of restored landmark theatres in America and the country’s second largest performing arts center — nationally recognized for public and private investment in downtown revitalization with demonstrated economic impact.

Download the Idea Center design narrative (PDF).


About ideastream

ideastream serves the people of Northeast Ohio as a trusted and dynamic multimedia source for illuminating the world around us. Publicly supported and locally owned, ideastream is indispensable and highly valued for its unique ability to strengthen our community. ideastream is the consolidation of WVIZ/PBS, with five channels of public television service (WVIZ/PBS-HD, WVIZ/PBS OHIO, WVIZ/PBS WORLD, WVIZ/PBS CREATE and WVIZ/PBS KIDS); 90.3 WCPN, Northeast Ohio’s NPR news and public affairs radio station; WCLV 104.9, Northeast Ohio’s classical music radio station; ideastream Education, with educational resources, services and the award-winning children’s series NewsDepth; and management of The Ohio Channel and the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau on behalf of all Ohio’s public broadcasting stations.

About Playhouse Square

Playhouse Square is a 501 (c)(3) not-for-profit, which restored and operates Playhouse Square and related properties in downtown Cleveland, Ohio. Playhouse Square is the nation’s largest performing arts complex outside of New York City and represents the largest theater restoration in the world. Its eight performance spaces seat over 10,000 and entertain nearly 1.4 million people annually. Playhouse Square’s mission is to present and produce a wide variety of quality performing arts, advance arts education and create a destination that is a superior location for entertainment, business and housing, thereby strengthening the economic vitality of the region. For more information, visit playhousesquare.org.

History of the Campaign for Idea Center

ideastream and Playhouse Square were pleased to announce the successful completion of the Campaign for Idea Center in September 2006, with pledges totaling $29,345,513, surpassing the campaign’s $27.4 million goal.

“We thank the community for embracing and believing in the partnership between ideastream and Playhouse Square,” Jerry Wareham, former president and CEO of ideastream said, “and we thank all of the volunteers and staff connected to the partner organizations who worked diligently toward the successful completion of the campaign.”

The Idea Center has become a vibrant center of activity including the broadcast operations and education services of ideastream and Playhouse Square arts education programs. The facility is a model of creative connectivity where broadcast and digital media is used to create and distribute content, including news, information, educational services and arts and cultural programming.

“Through classes, workshops, professional development, distance learning, broadcast media and performances, we are providing new opportunities for learning and enrichment through the arts and technology,” explained Art J. Falco, president and CEO of Playhouse Square.

The budget for the Idea Center at Playhouse Square was $42 million, with $32 million allocated to construction, furnishings, fixtures and equipment and $10 million for programs and program-enabling technology. The Campaign for Idea Center goal was set at $27.4 million. Funds pledged in excess of the campaign goal will enable ideastream and Playhouse Square to develop joint programmatic initiatives.

More information about the campaign can be found at the following links.

Support Provided By

More Wcpn Schedule
More Wclv Schedule
90.3 WCPN
WCLV Classical 104.9
NPR Hourly Newscast
The Latest News and Headlines from NPR
This text will be replaced with a player.
This text will be replaced with a player.
This text will be replaced with a player.