Cleveland to Double Budget for Repaving Neighborhood Streets

In 2014, bad weather left a large hole in Franklin Boulevard. (ideastream file photo)
In 2014, bad weather left a large hole in Franklin Boulevard. (ideastream file photo)
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Each year, Cleveland plans to resurface the worst five percent of its neighborhood streets.

The city will have plenty of broken residential roadways to pick from. Council president Kevin Kelley says the streets are in "crisis mode," and need "a comprehensive, data driven plan to roadway resurfacing that's going to maintain every roadway in the city of Cleveland.” Kelley added: “To get there, we're going to need to spend a lot more money."

More than twice as much—the city is increasing its spending from $4 million last year to $10 million next. The aim is to resurface every neighborhood street within 20 years. Kelley said he’s heard total cost estimates as high as $200 million.

But this comes with a change that some council members received with trepidation.

Each member used to receive equal shares of the city's road resurfacing funds to distribute in their wards as needed. This plan breaks with that tradition—allocating money unevenly among wards based on need.

Councilman Zack Reed said he wanted assurance his ward would receive more money under this plan.

“Because if you’re telling me that I’m not going to be guaranteed to do streets in my ward,” Reed said, “then I’ve got a problem with the whole system.”

The city plans a full study of its roads to figure out just where the worst streets can be found.

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