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Modified Clifton Boulevard Project Back on Track

Lakewood, RTA agree on scaled down project; city's share is now $50,000.

It appears that the may not be off the table in Lakewood after all. 

Lakewood officials met recently with the representatives from RTA, the city of Cleveland and the ODOT to discuss the $8 million project further.

Lakewood was made an offer it couldn’t refuse, said Mayor Michael Summers.

Instead of the $486,000 plan that would have included a landscaped median, Lakewood has agreed to pay only $50,000 and still get several upgrades to 2.9 miles of Clifton Boulevard.

Summers said it’s a value of $950,000.

According to the new proposal, there will be six new transit stations on the south side of Clifton Blvd. and three on the north side; traffic signal synchronization; better spacing of stops and new bicycle and pedestrian amenities.

In addition, the bus shelters will get a complete overhaul with new features that include GPS arrival monitors, pedestrian safety video-phones, landscaping and public art.

Instead of going to the Lakewood-Rocky River border, the project would stop at West Clifton Avenue, according the proposal.

“Upon review of Lakewood’s position, they offered a much-more scaled down opportunity for us to participate,” Summers said. “We were sincere in our position (to oppose the project), but it turned out to work for us.”

Summers had initially planned to put the brakes on the project when it included a tree-lined median landscape in the middle of Clifton Boulevard.

“It wasn’t at all clear what the benefits we’d get for our $486,000 and this project, other than a few new bus stops,” he said last week.

Summers said in order to pay for the new proposal, the cash-strapped city will need to make some changes, including cutting the shopper shuttle that takes seniors to pickup groceries. But he added the city is eyeing a more cost-effective alternative to that program.

RTA spokeswoman Mary McCahon said the project still needs final approval from The Transportation Review Advisory Council, a division of Ohio Department of Transportation.

The final OK is expected by June, but no timetable for construction has been set.

McCahon said that included in the project proposal are TRAC’s request for $5,390,000; RTA’s $1,735,000 contribution; and Cleveland’s contribution of $722,500.

 “The groundwork has been done — pun intended — and the design has been approved,” she said recently.

Alan R. March 29, 2011 at 01:29 PM
Please fix up Birdtown and Madison Ave. also.
Brian March 30, 2011 at 06:13 PM
This project will benefit schools, which are funded through property taxes. Enhance the neighborhoods, property values will go up, schools will benefit.
Nate Kelly April 01, 2011 at 02:20 PM
Brian - How? The inflated property values on that busy street are going to go up more because of this project? I don't think the sight of a few trees in between the cars traveling 45mph is going to do a thing for property values. I am pretty sure any home buyer will agree.
Nate Kelly April 01, 2011 at 05:53 PM
The Bus - Thanks for the personal attack. Clearly, you support this moronic project, so you'll be happy to know that these trees should provide another opportunity for the Hidden Village residents to hide after they steal the GPS from your car. Good investment. Oh, and it will increase property value.
Brian April 01, 2011 at 08:08 PM
Gaspipe--by removing an open lane there will definitely be a calming effect on traffic. This is part of the intention--to remove the 7 lane freeway that was installed years ago when the streetcars went away. And as far as home buyers--I am a home owner on Clifton Blvd and I don't agree with you. I welcome the median, upgraded bus shelters, crosswalks etc. This town needs some beautification before the next recession hits.
Nate Kelly April 02, 2011 at 08:11 PM
Brian - good call on the beautification, which is key to surviving a recession. That must be why this project got officially axed.
miguel April 03, 2011 at 05:31 PM
Boys... Play nice. Lakewood needs this to help the city in many ways.
D June 28, 2011 at 09:33 PM
I just got back into town and heard the Clifton project is back on. I'm still confused about one thing. The mayor opposedthe original plan partly because it cut down the number of traffic lanes (at least that was ONE of the reasons). Then the project was tabled. Now it is back in the works, and I'm still not sure if this project will cut down the lanes of traffic that go through our great town. If the medians can be put in and not cut down on the 2 open lanes of traffic that go in each direction (NOT including the parking/bus lane) it sounds OK. But if this project cuts that traffic pattern down (like so many cities are doing now) and keeps the volumes of people from driving through our city, I think this is a BIG mistake. I personally have always LOVED driving down that grand boulevard that traffic moves on so well, instead of taking the freeway. I LOVE looking at the majestic homes, manicured yards, loads of people walking and watching life happen. I alwasy left early for work just so I could take that route....even when I worked at G.E. in East Cleveland. I'm afraid if we cut down the number of lanes of traffic we will lose many visitors to our city and potential business and they will move back to the freeway. Would someone clear this up for me? I can't seem to find the details online.... Thanks.
Peter Grossetti June 29, 2011 at 12:11 AM
@ D McClellan - I think your reading some pretty old posts. If memory serves me correctly this is a dead issue now.

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