CLEVELAND - The Greater Cleveland Partnership (GCP) is recommending that the Ohio Legislature include financing for 11 high-impact projects in the state’s 2016-17 capital bill.
The GCP – the largest chamber of commerce in Ohio – traditionally submits its list of capital budget priorities to the legislature. Legislators have given the GCP recommendations a high priority in the crafting of past capital bills. The 2016-17 capital bill will be drafted later this year. The 2015-2016 capital bill included over $30 million for community projects in the greater Cleveland area.
“It was difficult to compile this list because there are so many worthy projects in Cleveland that deserve consideration,” said Joe Roman, President and CEO of the GCP.
“But after thorough deliberation, we came up with a list of projects that we believe are best suited to spur job-creating economic development and contribute the most to Cleveland’s ongoing renaissance.”
The recommended project list was organized in two levels. GCP is focused on securing $8.5 million in funding for the Lakefront Pedestrian Bridge that will connect downtown to the lakefront.
In addition, the following seven projects were also categorized as “Tier 1”, meaning the GCP considers them to be strategic priorities for Greater Cleveland. The amounts listed below were requested by the project sponsors:
Bridge to Wendy Park – $1 million for this span that would improve public access to lakefront park.
Restoring Irish Town Bend – $4 million to address landslide issues that could be devastating to shipping along the Cuyahoga River.
Flats East Bank – $8.1 million to help take the revitalization of the Flats East Bank to the next level by improving public access for pedestrians and motorists.
Cleveland Digital Innovation District – $2 million to transform Warehouse District building into mixed use innovation hub for the public and businesses, including start ups.
University Hospitals’ Rainbow Center for Women & Children – $1.5 million to establish this facility in Cleveland’s MidTown neighborhood that would offer community-centered care utilizing preventive interventions.
Phase Two of Reconstruction of Cleveland Museum of Natural History – $5 million for project that includes new lobby space, courtyard, research labs and expanded exhibit space.
Health Education Campus, Cleveland Clinic/Case Western Reserve University – $10 million to help finance facility for future health providers to learn and train in world-class, technologically-advanced environment.
The following three projects were categorized by the GCP to be Tier 2, also considered to be very important initiatives for the region:
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum – $2 million to transform the signature Hall of Fame exhibit and theater and create new exhibit spaces.
PlayhouseSquare –$4 million for parking garage segment of mixed-use development. Garage, to be operated by Playhouse Square Foundation, would benefit theatergoers, residents and office workers.
Salvation Army – $2 million to help meet increased demand for services that includes new facilities Downtown, East Cleveland and in Cleveland’s West Park and Collinwood neighborhoods.
The GCP also referenced nuCLEus – a proposed mixed use high-rise development in downtown Cleveland that would include apartments, a hotel, stores and more - as a notable project.
The Greater Cleveland Partnership mobilizes private-sector leadership, expertise and resources to create attractive business conditions that create jobs, grow investment and improve the economic prosperity of the region. www.gcpartnership.com