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Future waterfront - green and industrial

Marc Lefkowitz  |  07/30/12 @ 2:00pm  |  Posted in Vibrant cities

Irishtown Bend After<br />Irishtown Bend Before<br />

PD writer Steven Litt makes a strong case for regionalism in the form of a $90 million levy the Port of Cleveland wants county voters to pass for new investments in the Flats and to the lakefront.

"It would safeguard existing industrial activities on the river and lake and help open up the waterfronts for everyone."

He notes that it would bolster the city's attractiveness by investing in a future "Chicago" style waterfront with major recreation and waterfront access.

For example, by shoring up the slumping Irishtown Bend, the Lake Link trail connecting Tremont and Ohio City to Whiskey Island that LAND Studios has money to design (pictured) can move forward. And a pedestrian bridge from downtown's Malls to the Rock Hall can finally move ahead.

We would add, it rewards the innovative thinking around dredging the Cuyahoga River bed – instead of dumping soil in spots that lock up more of the lakefront, the Port wants to sell the fill (a stronger possibility now that environmental regulations have led to a less contaminated river bed).

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The Port's plans to shore up the Cuyahoga River banks and make the industrial river valley a combination working port and recreation space is aligning with the city's plans to build six miles of Towpath Trail into the Flats.

Part of that dream became reality today with the groundbreaking of the first new section of Towpath in Cleveland since the Steelyard Commons 3/4-mile section was completed. A soon-to-be-built ¾-mile Scranton Peninsula section of trail will be a connection between the city's proposed Canal Basin Park (under the bridge where Old River Road meets Canal Road – it will help make the jump across the Canal Road Bridge to Tremont. The photo shows cyclists on Scranton Road in the Flats just on the other side of the fence from where the trail will be).

Meanwhile, south of Steelyard, the city and the Metroparks are introducing a work-around for the radioactive Harshaw Chemical site. Great Lakes Courier reports that new sidewalks and signs will mark an easy on-road link from the shopping center to the trail's terminus at Old Harvard Road. See the overall plan for the Towpath in the Flats here.

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Want more transportation options – especially bicycling – in Ohio? Let the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) know in this survey. ODOT is currently writing its long-term transportation plan called Access Ohio 2040. Many questions in its "stakeholder engagement" survey include bicycling. Participate in ODOT's survey, click here and look for "Take the Access Ohio Survey." Let ODOT know your priorities for transportation in Ohio!

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Growhio, a grassroots local food promoter, is organizing cash mobs for the lesser known farmer's markets in town. Bring your $20 and your friends to experience the local food difference and support a small business at one of these markets on August 17, 18, 19, 20, 21 and 22

Many of these farmer's markets have Cuyahoga County food assistance coupons on site for $15 that qualifying households can use to buy fresh food at the market.

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