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About Idea Center


The Idea Center is the result of a model partnership between Ideastream Public Media 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 Public Media 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.

Design Narrative

Breakthrough Collaboration and a New Model for Urban Reinvestment

The Idea Center 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 Public Media 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 Public Media 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 Public Media

Ideastream Public Media serves the people of Northeast Ohio as a trusted and dynamic multimedia source for illuminating the world around us. Ideastream Public Media is the home of five public television stations (WVIZ, WVIZ OHIO, WVIZ WORLD, WVIZ CREATE and WVIZ KIDS); WCPN, Northeast Ohio’s NPR news and public affairs radio station; and WCLV, Northeast Ohio’s classical music radio station. Ideastream Public Media produces the award-winning children’s series “NewsDepth” and manages The Ohio Channel and the Ohio Public Radio and Television Statehouse News Bureau on behalf of all Ohio’s public broadcasting stations. Ideastream Public Media is indispensable and highly valued for its unique ability to strengthen our community.

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 Public Media 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 Public Media and Playhouse Square,” Jerry Wareham, former president and CEO of Ideastream Public Media 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 Public Media 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 Public Media and Playhouse Square to develop joint programmatic initiatives.

More information about the campaign can be found below.

    Campaign Leadership

    Board Chairs

    Jeanette Grasselli Brown - Ohio Board of Regents
    K.K. Sullivan - Civic Leader

    Capital Campaign Co-Chairs

    Thomas W. Adler - PSF Management, LLC
    Henry L. Meyer III - KeyCorp
    Jon H. Outcalt - Federal Process Corp.
    Robert S. Reitman - Riverbend Advisors

    Capital Campaign Steering Committee

    John D. Andrica - Union Partners, LLC
    Julia S. Bolton - Civic Leader
    Edward P. Campbell - Nordson Corporation
    Daniel E. Klimas - Lorain National Bank
    victor gelb - victor gelb, inc.
    Robert D. Gries - Gries Investments
    David H. Gunning - Cleveland-Cliffs Inc
    Sondra J. Hardis - Civic Leader
    William B. Lawrence - Formerly of TRW
    William E. MacDonald, III - National City Corporation
    Ernest J. Novak, Jr. - Formerly of Ernst & Young
    Bonnie Osher - Civic Leader
    James R. Pender - Oswald Companies
    Lauren Spilman - Civic Leader
    Susan H. Turben - Turben Developmental Services

    Executive Leadership

    Art J. Falco - President and Chief Executive Officer, Playhouse Square Foundation
    Kathryn P. Jensen - Chief Operating Officer, ideastream
    Jerrold F. Wareham - President and Chief Executive Officer, ideastream

    Campaign Staff

    Bill Hilyard - Director of Capital Campaign and Planned Giving, Playhouse Square Foundation
    Theodora S. Wolf - Senior Director of Institutional Relations, ideastream

    Capital Campaign Co-Chairs

    Thomas W. Adler
    Chairman, PSF Management Corporation, LLC
    Trustee, Playhouse Square Foundation

    "Two nonprofit organizations, with separate ideas, are merging together for this renovation project for the benefit of each other and the benefit of the community. It's going to become a really exciting place."

    Henry L. Meyer III
    Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, KeyCorp
    Trustee, ideastream

    "Instead of asking for three buildings - for public radio, public TV, and PlayhouseSquare for the arts - we're sharing studios, we're sharing things that we would otherwise have to do unilaterally."

    Jon H. Outcalt
    Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Federal Process Corporation
    Vice Chair, Nominating & Governance, Playhouse Square Foundation Board of Trustees

    "We're going to have one capital campaign, one construction project and one building to maintain."

    Robert S. Reitman
    Principal, Riverbend Advisors
    Emeritus Trustee, ideastream

    "The collaboration between ideastream and PlayhouseSquare Foundation is uniquely responsive to the call from both the corporate and philanthropic communities for optimal utilization of precious resources."

    Ideastream Public Media Trustees

    The list of Ideastream Public Media Trustees during the Campaign for Idea Center was as follows.

    Jeanette Grasselli Brown - Chairman
    Edward P. Campbell - Vice Chair and Treasurer
    William R. Stewart - Secretary
    Jerrold F. Wareham - Chief Executive Officer
    Kathryn P. Jensen - Chief Operating Officer

    Dennis L. Allen
    Selma A. Baron
    Barbara Byrd-Bennett
    William R. Calfee
    Mary Beth Carroll
    Thomas J. Cook
    George R. Droder
    Michael A. Ellis
    Patty Hayes
    Charlotte A. Fowler
    Cheri Gardiner
    Karen R. Haefling
    Sondra Hardis
    David G. Hill
    James D. Ireland III
    Richard J. Knapp
    Rik Kohn
    Ralph M. Kovel
    William B. Lawrence
    Marcia Levine
    Toby Lewis
    Frank L. Lordeman
    Priscilla M. Luce
    William E. MacDonald, III
    Christine A. Mayer
    Henry L. Meyer III
    Susie Frazier Mueller
    Patrick M. Prout
    Barbara S. Rosenthal
    Vladimir J. Rus
    Michael Schwartz
    Shirley Stineman
    Louis Stokes
    Linda A. Striefsky
    James E. Sweetnam
    Helen N. Tomlinson
    Susan H. Turben
    Andrew A. Venable, Jr.
    Robert A. Weible
    Jeff Weiss
    Margaret W. Wong

    Emeritus Trustees

    George Dobrea
    George J. Dunn
    Robert D. Gries
    Arthur S. Holden, Jr.
    Samuel H. Miller
    Lindsay J. Morgenthaler
    Robert S. Reitman
    John E. Rupert
    Harry H. Stone
    Seth C. Taft
    Dudley J. Taw
    Alexander S. Taylo

    Playhouse Square Trustees

    The list of Playhouse Square Trustees during the Campaign for Idea Center was as follows.

    K.K. Sullivan* - Chairman
    Art J. Falco* - President & CEO
    John G. Chapman* and Neil C. Weinberger* - Vice Chair, Development
    James R. Pender* - Vice Chairs, Education
    Ernest J. Novak, Jr.* - Vice Chair, Finance
    Thomas E. Wagner* - Vice Chair, Government Affairs
    Jon H. Outcalt* - Vice Chair, Nominating & Governance
    Darrell A. Young* - Vice Chair, Real Estate Development
    Sara Ellen Stashower* - Vice Chair, Sales & Marketing
    John D. Andrica* - Vice Chair, Strategic Planning
    Thomas C. Stevens* - Secretary/Treasurer


    Terry Adelman
    Thomas W. Adler*
    Warren E. Anderson*
    Julia S. Bolton
    Glenn R. Brown
    Marjorie M. Carlson
    Paul Clark
    Christopher M. Connor
    Margot James Copeland
    William H. Coquillette
    Jeffrey D. Cristal
    Paul J. Dolan
    Richard H. Fearon
    victor gelb*
    Ann W. Gillespie*
    David H. Gunning
    Lawrence H. Hatch
    Oliver C. Henkel, Jr.*
    David G. Hill
    Robert J. Joyce
    Margaret M. Judd
    Daniel E. Klimas
    William B. Lawrence
    John F. Lewis*
    Robert M. Long
    Barry Minoff
    Hector R. Ortino
    Bonnie Osher
    James A. Ratner
    James A. Samuels
    Luci Schey
    John B. Schulze
    Michael Schwartz
    William R. Seelbach
    Lauren Spilman
    David J. Strauss
    Jerry Sue Thornton
    Robert J. Tomsich
    Dominic A. Visconsi
    Michael R. Weil
    Thomas M. Welsh
    Jacqueline F. Woods

    Trustee for Life

    Edward H. deConingh, Jr.
    Forrest D. Hayes
    Lois U. Horvitz
    Julien L. McCall
    Lindsay J. Morgenthaler
    Rena J. Olshansky
    Victor J. Scaravilli
    James B. Wolf, Jr.

    National Trustee

    Lawrence J. Wilker

    *Denotes Executive Committee Members

    Commemorative Honor Roll of Giving


    Westfield Insurance

    Principal Benefactors

    The 1525 Foundation
    The Cleveland Foundation
    The George Gund Foundation
    The Kresge Foundation
    Peter B. Lewis
    David & Lindsay Morgenthaler
    The Reinberger Foundation
    The Kelvin & Eleanor Smith Foundation
    State of Ohio
    U.S. Federal Government

    Major Benefactors

    Eva L. & Joseph M. Bruening Foundation
    Kulas Foundation
    John P. Murphy Foundation
    National City
    Jane & Jon Outcalt
    Parker Hannifin
    Lois & Tom Stauffer
    Susan & John Turben


    Jeanette Grasselli Brown & Glenn R. Brown
    Eaton Corporation
    Forest City Enterprises
    Sondra & Stephen Hardis
    Lois U. Horvitz
    The Lerner Foundation
    Toby Devan Lewis
    Arnold & Sydell Miller Family Foundation
    Eric & Jane Nord Foundation
    Nordson Corporation
    Ohio Savings Bank
    John & Bonnie Osher
    The Robert S. & Sylvia K. Reitman Family Foundation
    K.K. & Joe Sullivan

    Principal Contributors

    Joanie & Tom Adler
    Baker Hostetler
    Mr. & Mrs. Charles P. Bolton
    Barbara & Evan Corns
    George & Becky Dunn
    Fairmount Minerals
    FirstEnergy Foundation
    The GAR Foundation
    Sally & Bob Gries
    The Hershey Foundation
    Nancy & Rik Kohn
    Ralph & Terry Kovel
    The Fred A. Lennon Charitable Trust
    Marcia W. Levine
    The Lincoln Electric Foundation
    The Mandel Foundation - Jack, Joseph & Morton Mandel
    Jane & Henry Meyer
    David & Inez Myers Foundation
    The Nord Family Foundation
    The Julia & Larry Pollock Family
    Sally & John Schulze
    The Sherwick Fund
    The STERIS Foundation
    Robert & Suzanne Tomsich
    The Treu-Mart Fund
    Dominic A. Visconsi
    Thomas H. White Foundation, a KeyBank Trust
    Wolf Family Foundation

    Major Contributors

    Terry & Sheldon Adelman
    American Greetings Corporation
    The George W. Codrington Charitable Foundation
    Morton & Rosalie Cohen
    Dominion Foundation
    Charlotte & Charles Fowler Foundation
    Arthur S. & Arlene Holden
    Jones Day Foundation
    Henri Pell Junod, Jr.
    Milton A. & Charlotte R. Kramer Charitable Foundation
    Susie & Bill MacDonald
    The John C. & Sally S. Morley Family Foundation
    NACCO Industries, Inc.
    Oatey Co.
    The William J. & Dorothy K. O'Neill Foundation
    The Plain Dealer
    The Sage Cleveland Foundation
    SandFair Foundation
    Luci & Ralph Schey Foundation
    Squire, Sanders & Dempsey L.L.P.
    Tom & Maryann Wagner


    The Abington Foundation
    John & Diane Andrica
    Applied Industrial Technologies
    Austin Memorial Foundation
    The William Bingham Foundation
    William R. Calfee
    Ed & Sharon Campbell
    Harry & Marjorie M. Carlson
    John & Pat Chapman
    Jill & Paul Clark
    The Cleveland-Cliffs Foundation
    Julie & Jeffrey Cristal
    Mr. & Mrs. Thomas W. Cristal
    Mr. & Mrs. Edward deConingh, Jr.
    Paul & Karen Dolan
    Hank & Mary Doll
    Karen & David Doll
    George & Debbie Droder
    Michael & Diane Ellis
    Art & Maryann Falco
    Susie Frazier & Tim Mueller
    Lisa & Tom Furnas
    Vic & Joan Gelb
    David & Robin Gunning
    Bahman & Lora Guyuron
    Karen & Todd Haefling
    Annette & Forrest Hayes
    Patty J. Hayes
    Sally & Oliver Henkel
    The Higley Fund
    Mr. & Mrs. Michael J. Horvitz
    James D. Ireland III
    Kit Jensen
    JND Properties LLC
    Jo-Ann Stores, Inc.
    Joseph P. & Nancy F. Keithley Foundation
    Mr. & Mrs. Daniel Klimas
    Richard J. Knapp & Virginia E. Mattingly
    Mr. & Mrs. Charles J. Koch
    Marvin & Carol Lader
    William B. & Mary Margaret Lawrence
    Cathy & John Lewis
    Mr. & Mrs. Robert M. Long
    Mr. & Mrs. Frank Lordeman
    The Lubrizol Foundation
    Priscilla & Robert Luce
    Julien L. McCall
    Barry Minoff
    Myers Industries, Inc.
    Mr. & Mrs. Robert D. Neary
    OMNOVA Solutions Foundation
    The Patrick S. Parker Family
    Kathy & Jim Pender
    Richard W. & Patricia R. Pogue
    The PolyOne Corporation
    Mrs. Alfred M. Rankin
    James & Susan Ratner
    RPM International Inc.
    The Elizabeth & Ellery Sedgwick Fund
    Nancy & Bill Seelbach
    Select Equity Group Foundation
    The Sherwin-Williams Company
    Lauren & Steven Spilman
    Chris & Tom Stevens
    Bill & Sandy Stewart
    Shirley Stineman
    Mr. & Mrs. David Strauss
    The William & Pamela Summers Family
    Thompson Hine LLP
    Helen N. Tomlinson
    Nina & Norman Wain
    Anne & Jerry Wareham
    Mr. & Mrs. Jeffrey Weiss
    Margaret W. Wong & Assoc. Co. LPA
    Bennett & Donna Yanowitz
    Darrel & Andria Young

    Other Loyal Supporters

    Albert T. Adams
    Dick & Joan Ainsworth
    Dennis & Sheri Allen
    Warren E. Anderson
    Selma & Stanley Baron
    The Bartlett Family Fund
    Mr. & Mrs. James Bayman
    Mr. & Mrs. Robert W. Brumi
    Barbara Byrd-Bennett
    Peter & Rita Carfagna and The Carfagna Family Foundation
    Robert & Mary Calsin
    Charlie & Mary Beth Carroll
    Leigh & Mary Carter
    Ms. Katharyn L. Clyde
    Geary & Shelley Cochran
    Mr. & Mrs. Christopher M. Connor
    Tom & Anita Cook
    Margot James Copeland
    Janet & Bill Coquillette
    George & Jean Dobrea
    Sandy & Dennis Eckart
    Tom & Cindy Einhouse
    Richard & Robyn Fearon
    The Ferro Foundation
    Duncan & Cheri Gardiner
    Mr. & Mrs. Joseph E. Gardner
    The Judith Gerson Fund of The Cleveland Foundation
    Erin & Lincoln Gisel
    Rochelle & Harley I. Gross
    Mr. & Mrs. Michael Hardy
    Lawrence & Linda Hatch
    Mr. & Mrs. Robert T. Hexter
    Mrs. Allene R. Hill
    Edith F. Hirsch
    Mr. & Mrs. Robert J. Joyce
    Executive Arrangements, Inc.
    Nedra A. Kalish
    R. Steven & Denise Kestner
    Stewart & Donna Kohl
    Edmund & Laura Leopold
    Christine & Richard Mayer
    Karen A. Miller
    Laini K. Montlack & Paul Krakovitz
    Murlan J. Murphy, Jr.
    Cynthia & Robert Naegele
    Mr. & Mrs. Ernest J. Novak Jr.
    Rena Blumberg Olshansky
    The Prout Group, Inc.
    Amy & Ken Rogat
    Barbara S. Rosenthal
    Jack & Jinny Rupert
    Thea & Vlad Rus
    Gordon & Evie Safran
    James A. Samuels
    Diann & Victor J. Scaravilli
    Liz & Tom Schorgl
    Drs. Michael & Joanne Schwartz
    Laura & Alvin A. Siegal
    Paul & Jan Silla
    Mr. & Mrs. Robert C. Smith
    Sara E. Stashower & Mark Heller
    Louis Stokes, U.S. Congress (retired)
    James Carlson & Linda A. Striefsky
    Jim & Elizabeth Sweetnam
    Franny & Seth Taft
    Mr. Dudley J. Taw
    Alexander S. Taylor
    Jerry Sue Thornton, Ph.D.
    Joanne Travers
    Hal & Ronna Uhrman
    Andrew A. Venable, Jr.
    WBNS-10 TV
    Mr. Robert A. Weible
    Michael & Hannah Weil
    Thomas M. & Kathleen Welsh
    Mr. & Mrs. Loyal Wilson
    Jack & Jacqueline Woods
    Brian R. Wynne
    Molly H. Young