CLEVELAND — The coronavirus is inspiring Americans to head outside not only because the spread of the virus appears to be much less likely outdoors, but also as a break from the homes we’ve been told to spend much of our time inside.
It’s an extra reminder, though Clevelanders knew it already, that there are very few places where the city connects to it’s waterfront.
Along the bending Cuyahoga River, there are a handful of projects at various stages that could collectively change the way people can access the river.
“It’s been in that quiet phase for some time but this is going to be a very visible year for Irishtown Bend,” said Ohio City Inc. Executive Director Tom McNair.
McNair tells News 5 there are about $40 million secured so far to do the project.
A big chunk of that funding came from the U.S. Department of Transportation, as News 5 reported last summer.
McNair says engineers are developing plans right now to stabilize the hillside so it doesn’t fall into the river. Just the research and plan design costs about $3.4 million.
Once the hillside is stabilized, work can begin to create a roughly 23 acre riverfront park that would connect Ohio City to the water.
Later this summer and in early fall, McNair says there will be information for virtual planning meetings for residents to share their ideas about what Irishtown Bend and Franklin Boulevard should look like. There will also be voicemail and text options so people who don’t have smartphones can still participate.
See our previous coverage of Franklin Boulevard here.
“We’re fundamentally reshaping what the Cuyahoga River Valley is going to look like in the next couple of years,” said McNair.
McNair says the plan to stabilize the hillside could be completed in the end few months, with construction to complete that plan potentially starting in 2021. That is expected to take a year and a half to two years, with construction starting on the landscaping immediately after.
See LAND Studio's renderings here.
Saturday, an Irishtown Bend clean up will run out of the parking lot at 1477 West 25th Street from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m..
Canal Basin Park
Northeast Ohio Area Coordinating Agency (NOACA) recently approved $550,400 to help improve Canal Basin Park, near the Settler’s Landing Greater Cleveland RTA Rapid stop in the Flats.
There are plans to take out two parking lots and add features like bike racks and benches to make the area more inviting to people using the Towpath Trail.
Flats Platform Tennis Center
Downriver from Canal Basin Park, The Flats Platform Tennis Center is working on building its facility in Rivergate park, near Merwin’s Warf, next to the skate park and on the “currently-vacant Cleveland Rowing Foundation property,” Flats Forward Executive Director Jim Haviland told News 5 in an email.
Renderings here show raised courts and a Paddle Hut walking distance from the water.
New building on the East Bank
The final building is expected to have more entertainment, bar, and restaurant space.
Nautica District land lot still for Sale on West Bank
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