Now That The Silver Lining is Ending, How Does Our Health Line Look?

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Fri, 09/19/2008 - 23:53.

Last night, the nightmare that has been the resurfacing of Euclid Avenue through University Circle was nearly completed - they are painting the lines on the road tonight. I expect next week there will be fairly normal traffic through "The World's Most Powerful Learning Environment" once again. Euclid Avenue is now a $1 billion-bettered, public-transit-transformed, "Health"-ier place all along the line, and it does show. In East Cleveland the street has been repaved and bus shelters upgraded (although that is about all we got in the way of RTA enhancements). From University Circle through the Cleveland Clinic territory the streetscaping is extensive. And the street reshaping has been extensive, as well... the buses now run down the center of the road, stopping at islands (which the photo below shows will be a big problem...).

The expectation is that these infrastructure upgrades and enhancements will drive more and better investments in the area along and near Euclid Avenue, and it is clear that has succeeded at some level in anticipation of completion of the Health Line. While I'm sure the Clinic has spent the most money along Euclid, and they made their Euclid (and Chester) presence much stronger than before, my favorite new development along the health line has been the renovation and reopening of the Euclid Tavern.

So, where does the health of this mainline corridor go from here, now that the big public and private money has been spent, and there are more holes than homes, and folks are starting to get that "Gateway" effect that comes with sitting in a new stadium watching the same old team, and they still suck, beer is $8, your taxes are higher, and you can't afford the cost of entry.

I sure as hell can't afford anything at the Clinic. But The Euc has good happy hour specials, so it was worth the cool $million, to me.

How you feeling about our Big Ditch, er Health Line now?


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Flat line

I rode the Red Line (as in hemorrhage?) tonight from W.25th to University Circle to see the CWRU Art Studio Faculty exhibit.  It was jam packed until the Tower City stop--filled with baseball fans on the way to the game downtown. 

More than the usual train traffic to a game?  Hard to judge from my one recent encounter, but I would say that gas prices and the economy have finally jolted typically complacent sports fans to get out of their SUVs.  Will it jolt clinic workers, especially the docs, to do the same?  I seriously doubt it. 

Besides, the Clinic is already planning their next move to circumvent the city proper* by destroying wetlands in Twinsburg.

(*speaking of train wrecks)

The new #6 bus

Time will tell. I guess its the glorified replacement for the #6 bus. A futuristic streetcar.

Remember the ads of millionaire doctors and CEOs on buses and on the radio promoting this a couple years back? Wonder if they'll be on them the winter?

I heard that the old streetcars' final undoing here (and everywhere else) was that GM bought out the transit officials to push buses on us.

Now we have a streetcar with tires.

cleveland clinic "green" shell game

Thanks for pointing this out Laura. This is another example of Bullwinkle greenwashing - "Here watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat".

"If the clinic were to build a parking garage and move the main building closer to state Route 91, the project could proceed without EPA wetland approval, Korleski said, and the agency would work with the hospital to develop best-management practices to minimize effects on water.

But, to date, clinic officials have been reluctant to change their plans, he noted.

In his letter, Korleski also ruled that one of the wetlands is a high-quality one. That will require additional compliance steps by the clinic.

The site also contains rare, high-quality, headwater streams that need to be protected, he wrote.
Korleski said it will be ''very difficult, if not impossible, to find acceptable compensatory mitigation for the loss of these water resources.''

Officially, the clinic is seeking EPA approval to fill in 3.14 acres of wetlands and 4,335 feet of streams.
It intends to preserve 33 acres of wetlands and forests through a conservation easement that might be held by a third-party agency such as Metro Parks, Serving Summit County. The clinic also would pay to restore a section of Pond Brook, a stream in eastern Twinsburg that flows into Tinkers Creek.

The EPA's Twinsburg office will make a recommendation to Korleski on whether the clinic should be granted what's called a 401 water quality certificate. The final decision for issuing it rests with Korleski. The clinic needs state approval before it can seek approval for the project from the Corps of Engineers."

Didn't we just read that, "Cleveland Clinic has established an Office for a Healthy Environment to expand and oversee environmental initiatives throughout its health system. The office will operate under the leadership of its newly appointed Director, Christina Vernon Ayers, AIA, LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design)."

But now they want to build on headwater streams and pave their own grand entrance (Opportunity Corridor) and tear down the Carnigie Medical Building (most recently Ohio College of Podiatric Medicine) to allow for more surface parking and all in the name of sustainability...

What's wrong with this only slightly green picture? I like the polkadot pond, but not at the expense of the true watershed in NEO. Wise up CCF. Ms. Ayers is looking more and more like Joyce Burke-Jones. Remember that she (J B-J) was appointed sustainability czar at the county and her first action seemed to be defending tearing down the Breuer.

And further, when Forest City and Cleveland Clinic decide to put a city fresh/CSA market  on their wannabe green suit lapels, do we forgive them for building on and paving big chunks of pristine wetland or neighborhood. Let's find a balance here.

only 232 feet of the headwater streams

Cleveland Clinic revises their plans in Twinsburg. Now they plan to degrade ONLY 232 FEET OF THE COLD-WATER HEADWATER STREAMS.

What? They want us to applaud?

Green facade

Nothing green at all, Susan.  It's what a PARENT would call a fabrication, a facade....a lie. Yeah, we all still believe in Santa Claus. Does the Clinic really think that we're all just a bunch of believers?

When will I be convinced that UCI and the Clinic (and Metrohealth) ARE GREEN?


When I see the numbers on private investment in the walkable residential neighborhoods surrounding the clinic--not federal and local tax incentives or even their forgiveable loans.

Personally, I will be happy when I find myself living next to a teacher, a police officer, a mail carrier, a machinist, a truck driver, a retiree, and a DOCTOR.

Yes, the Healthline is Golden

Tonight I drove from East Cleveland down Euclid Avenue all the way to E. 55th - all the lanes are open, lined and intact - bike riders will love the smooth bike lanes - and the lights seem pretty well timed at 25 MPH. But hanging a left can be a pain...

Still, I can't believe it is done!... well, except for lots of landscaping (which will probably not be very green). 

Disrupt IT

Good question... and good write up by Litt

I was talking on the phone to Peter Whitehouse the other day, as he was waiting for the Red Line train, and asked him if he was online, thinking RTA had put in place wifi along their lines... seems a no-brianer. Peter didn't know, nor do I. Anyone know?

Thanks for linking to Litt's write-up on the now completed Healthline - I think he covered things pretty well. 

Disrupt IT

RTA talked about wifi at MTB in 2k7

John McGovern raised the question during the Meet the Bloggers / MidTown Brews talk with folks from the RTA in April of 2007. They were very noncommittal, but talked about laying the groundwork fiber down the corridor for whatever comes next.

The question begins about 12min 45sec into the recording.