The Cleveland Foundation’s $21.8 million headquarters project received final approval from the Cleveland Planning Commission Friday. The Cleveland Foundation tells News 5 it hopes to begin construction before the end of 2020, depending on city permits. The Foundation hopes to move in during the summer of 2022.
The project would achieve a handful of community goals: create a community-gathering location, provide space for local organizations, and bridge the gap between the Euclid corridor, which has seen hundreds of millions of investment dollars, and Hough neighborhood.
Cleveland Foundation Headquarters
The building itself will be a mass timber building, joining Ohio City’s Intro Cleveland which is also being built using similar materials.
Vocon Associate Design Director Nick Faehnle told the Planning Commission that the building materials were chosen because of their environmental sustainability and how they’ll help make the building more inviting to people who see it.
S9 Architecture Architect Pascale Sablan showed renderings where the building materials will be visible from the lobby, symbolically showing how the project and headquarters is about being welcoming.
“The ground floor is meant to be as open and transparent and inviting as possible,” said Sablan.
The building is tallest at the corner of Euclid Avenue and East 66th Street with a lot of glass on the first floor allowing pedestrians to see into the building.
As the building moves east towards Dunham Tavern, Sablan says the building “kneels down,” tapering off into a green space intended to ease the transition to the Dunham Tavern campus.
There are also plans for a cafe that would be open even when the Cleveland Foundation offices aren’t open, giving the community an additional gathering spot. Ground floor meeting rooms are designed to be visible and open into the outdoor spaces to make the building more inviting.
Sablan also noted the design of the building was based off what already exists nearby and what the historical use of the land used to be. The region’s manufacturing history inspired the building’s warehouse-like large windows.
The Western Red Cedar wood will have a special stain on it so the wood maintains its warm color.
“I can’t wait for young children in my neighborhood to be able to look up and see such a beautiful structure in their community,” said Ward 7 Cleveland City Council member Basheer Jones.
East 66th Street Connectivity
A new Headquarters location on the corner of Euclid and East 66th Street will also allow for green space, a new street design on East 66th Street making it easier to get from Euclid Avenue to and across Chester Avenue.
East 66th Street would be redesigned to include a multi-use path separated from the road by green space with on street parking on the opposite side of the road.
Huang told the Planning Commission it was created with input from the community considering how the street could be accessible for multiple forms of transportation and local residents.
Behind the Cleveland Foundation Headquarters, there are plans for a long green space that would connect the Dunham Tavern Museum through to the back of Dave’s Supermarket at the corner of East 61st Street and Chester Avenue.
“These collective projects that are being planned…really help shape and form, after the Cleveland Foundation building is completed, to really transform what we see here,” said MidTown Cleveland Executive Director Jeff Epstein.
The goal is to create large areas that are welcoming for people to spend time, mingle with other community members, and relax outside.
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