GCP President and CEO Joe Roman sat down with WTAM’s Bill Wills for their regular discussion on partnerships and projects happening around Greater Cleveland. First up on their list was Sun Country Airlines coming to Cleveland Hopkins Airport with a direct flight to Minneapolis, starting May 29. Joe explained that every time the city gets another airline—and keeps that new airline happy—there’s potential to do more business with more airlines down the line.
Joe and Bill also discussed how Cleveland Public Power is asking for a rate increase, which is common when utility companies are dealing with aging infrastructure. According to Joe, the city may need to start looking for a different business model—specifically an opportunity to build a microgrid downtown. This would be a new and different asset for our city, which could be advantageous to businesses wen the main power grid goes downs—and this could be a selling point when recruiting new businesses to the area.
Cleveland’s RTA is another company that Joe says GCP is interested in helping identify a new business model. It’s currently using an old model that relies on getting people downtown through an aging train system and other mechanisms, which he says isn’t going to work in the future. They need to concentrate on efficiently getting people to job hubs and investing in places where economic activity can happen—such as is the case with the Cleveland Healthline.
One of the two other exciting things happening for the city is that JP Morgan Chase awarded $5 million—which will be matched by GCP and other groups—to focus on improving area neighborhoods that are looking to become the next Tremont and Detroit Shoreways of the city. And, The London Stock Exchange Group ELITE selected Cleveland as their U.S. hub thanks in part to the ability of Cleveland to cut across may different sectors of the economy.
Finally, Joe applauded the Cleveland Rising Summit for giving people the opportunity to have their voices heard and for bringing more people into the fold to get involved in different things happening throughout the city.