Perspectives Header
Kerri Broome, editor
November 2011

CRS logo
In This Issue
What's Your Vision for NEO?
Call for 2012 Preservation Award Nominations
Cleveland School of the Arts Demolition Scheduled
Franklin Boulevard House Demolished
Pat Eldredge to Receive Award
Casino Skywalk Grounded by National Park Service
Mayor Jackson Wants Unified Public Square
CMSD Considers Building Options
"Helping Johnny Walk to School"
Cleveland Cemeteries to be Repaired
Commissioners Vote to Demolish Courthouse
Historic House Available for Holiday Parties
Office Space For Rent
More About CRS

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Cleveland Museum of ArtWhat's your vision?

On Tuesday, November 22, Cuyahoga County Executive Ed FitzGerald will express his views on how our communities can protect and reinvest in our world-class monuments as a way to distinguish Cleveland and Cuyahoga County on the world stage.  What's your vision for using our legacy of historic architecture to create a better future for our region? Share it now! 


MakeEd FitzGerald plans now to attend the 38th Annual Community Luncheon on Tuesday, November 22 from 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m. and hear Mr. FitzGerald. Online registration is open.  Individual tickets start at $60 (student discounts are available). Tables host opportunities and program advertising spots are available now. Contact CRS for more information. 





Residences at 668

Call for 2012 Preservation Award Nominations 

Do you know of a recently completed restoration project in Northeast Ohio, or one that will be completed soon? Do you think it should be considered for a 2012 Preservation Award by the Cleveland Restoration Society and the Cleveland Chapter of the American Institute of Architects? If so, fill out a nomination form and submit it to the Cleveland Restoration Society.  (Pictured are the Residences at 668 Euclid, a 2011 winner.)  




Cleveland School of the Arts

Cleveland School of the Arts Demolition Scheduled 

The beautiful Cleveland School of the Arts building at 2064 Stearns Road in University Circle will soon face the wrecking ball to make way for a replacement school on the same site. Built as Observation Elementary School in 1910, it is one of the oldest school buildings in the Cleveland Metropolitan School District. The building is not listed in the National Register, although it is likely eligible. None of the buildings in Phase I of the district's demolition plan were landmarked and nothing could be done to stop their demolition, unlike the buildings in Phase II, which have all been landmarked. The stately, four-story orange brick building that houses the Cleveland School of the Arts is highlighted by three ornate terra cotta entrances.  In 2002, the CMSD completed an exterior renovation through the "Warm, Safe & Dry" initiative that included installation of new nine-over-nine windows, cleaning of the terra cotta entrances and reconstruction of the entrance stairs.  


CRS toured the school in 2007 and urged the district to consider creative solutions through careful study of programmatic needs, the current facilities, and the Ohio School Facilities Guidelines for school renovation, which would enable the preservation of significant portions of the original school structure. We were very disappointed that the school officials were not at all open to the reuse of the current building. Environmental abatement of the building will begin in November and is scheduled to take one month; demolition will begin when that is completed. According to Cleveland Planning Commission staff, some of the terra cotta detail of the Cleveland School of the Arts building and the exterior artwork will be saved and incorporated into the interior of the new school. 




3104 Franklin Boulevard

Franklin Boulevard House Demolished

The unusual home at 3104 Franklin Boulevard in Cleveland's Ohio City Historic District was recently demolished. The owner applied for a demolition permit in December 2008, having purchased the property with the intention of demolishing it to build a three-story loft development with views of the lake from the upper units. The Cleveland Landmarks Commission denied the Certificate of Appropriateness upon the recommendation of the local Ohio City Design Review Committee on December 11, 2008. Letting the property deteriorate for years, the owner appealed the decision. In July of this year, the Court of Common Pleas reversed the decision of the Board of Zoning Appeals, saying the board "acted in an arbitrary manner when it affirmed the decision of the City of Cleveland Landmarks Commission denying" the owner's request to demolish the property. The Division of Building and Housing found this property to be a nuisance because of its poor condition. The Court of Common Pleas decision said that the owner had been denied the ability to "abate the nuisance" through demolition, although rehabilitation would have also abated the nuisance. The Division of Building and Housing had the authority to require that repairs be made to the property as part of the "minimum maintenance provisions" of the Cleveland Landmarks Ordinance, but failed to do so. Had the property owner been required to maintain the property to a minimum standard, the nuisance condition and subsequent demolition could have been avoided.  


CRS has formed a task force to strengthen Cleveland's Landmarks Ordinance and to review the process through which the Division of Building and Housing works in historic districts. The illustration shows the fašade of the property earlier this year and as it might have looked rehabilitated (illustration by Timothy Barrett).




Pat Eldredge

Eldredge to Receive Award

Patricia Eldredge, an Honorary Life Trustee of the Cleveland Restoration Society, is among the recipients of the 2011 Ohio Historic Preservation Office Awards for her advocacy and leadership in the preservation of Ohio's historic resources. The award ceremony will take place on November 12, 2011 during a luncheon from 12:00 to 2:00 p.m. at the Piqua Library, 116 West High St., Piqua. Congratulations, Pat! 




Higbee Building proposed skywalk

Casino Skywalk Grounded by National Park Service

The National Park Service has denied the application of Forest City Enterprises Inc., filed on behalf of Rock Ohio Caesars, for the skywalk over the intersection of Ontario Street and Prospect Avenue. John Sandor of the National Park Service cited that the skywalk was, "not in keeping with the historic nature of the building." Rock Ohio Caesars could continue with the walkway as planned, but would have to reimburse Forest City Enterprises for the tax credits awarded for prior rehabilitations, which would be recaptured for completing the unapproved alteration. Alternatively, skywalk construction could be put on hold for approximately four years, when the tax credit certification term expires. Forest City Enterprises and Rock Ohio Caesars have not commented on the ruling.




Frank Jackson
Lonnie Timmons, III,  Plain Dealer
Jackson Wants Unified Public Square 

Public Square is the center of the City of Cleveland and Mayor Frank Jackson's has spoken out in favor of a vision that strengthens its distinction as the city's public space. Mayor Jackson would like to see a new design for the square that closes Superior Avenue and Ontario Street, unifying the present four-quadrant Public Square into a large, public green space and attracting pedestrian and bicycle traffic alike. Mayor Jackson also envisions the redefined square as a major connector between the present and budding entertainment districts. Partnering with Downtown Cleveland Alliance, a traffic study has been commissioned to understand the effect of closing the cross streets. Results should be ready in February 2012. Read Steve Litt's recent Plain Dealer article here .




Board of Education building interior

CMSD Considers Building Options

The Cleveland Municipal School District could save $18 million over the next decade by moving out of its historic building in Cleveland's downtown and selling it to developers, consultants hired by the district have recently reported. The six-story Board of Education Building was designed by Cleveland firm Walker and Weeks and completed in 1930. The Beaux Arts building draws heavily from the Italian Renaissance. The assembly room contains landscape murals by local artist Rolf Stoll, who was an instructor at the School of Art.  Two mural panels by Cora Millet Holden, one of the most critically acclaimed muralists in Cleveland in the 1920s, flank the Mall side entry. Clevelander Max Kalish designed the statue of Lincoln that sits outside the main entrance; it was installed a few years after the building's completion. The Building is a key piece of the city's 1903 Mall Plan by Daniel Burnham. 




Cleveland neighborhood school"Helping Johnny Walk to School" by Using Older and Historic Schools

As communities large and small continue to redefine priorities to promote quality of life, the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the United States Environmental Protection Agency, in a cooperative agreement, have presented long-awaited information regarding the importance of community-centered schools for personal and communal health. Read further about the Trust's policy recommendations and the EPA's siting guidelines to promote the reuse of older and historic schools.



Woodland Cemetery gatehouse

Cleveland Cemeteries to be Repaired

The City of Cleveland has committed $2.3 million from a cemetery endowment fund for deferred repairs at the Erie, Woodland, and Monroe graveyards. The money will be used to rebuild dismantled stone gatehouses, restore mausoleums, and re-erect toppled monuments. Erie Street Cemetery dates to 1826, with Monroe Street Cemetery in 1836, and Woodland Cemetery in 1853 (the dismantled Woodland gatehouse is shown here). Take a stroll through any of the three and you will undoubtedly come across significant names integral to Cleveland's history. Read more about the restoration plans that are to begin in spring 2012.




Seneca County Courthouse

Commissioners Vote to Demolish Seneca County Courthouse

If you follow preservation issues around the state, then you have heard about the battle to keep the Seneca County Courthouse in Tiffin, Ohio standing.  The county commissioners voted this week to demolish the 1884 structure.  Even Governor Kasich voiced his support for the preservation of the courthouse.  Learn more here.




SBH wreath

Have Your Holiday Party at the Benedict House

Are you looking for a unique venue for your next special event or business meeting?  Consider the historic Sarah Benedict House, one of Cleveland's hidden gems,  located in the heart of the MidTown neighborhood at 3751 Prospect Avenue! The house was built in 1883 for Sarah Rathbone Benedict, the widow of Cleveland Herald publisher George Benedict. The Sarah Benedict House offers 4 accessible rooms on its first floor, separate restrooms for men and women, and a kitchen for catering. A beautiful garden is just steps away, with both open grass and paved levels separated by a sculptural fountain. The house has ample, free parking and easy access to freeways. This fully restored gem is waiting for you. Contact CRS today!

small tile

Office Space Available in MidTown

The historic Sarah Benedict House has a suite available for rent. Share the third floor with prestigious Cleveland nonprofits looking for a roommate. The house is well-located in an established neighborhood with easy access to highways and downtown and ample, free parking. In addition to the fully improved office space, there are meeting rooms on the first floor of the house available for use for free. The garden, open seasonally, can also be reserved for events, and is a wonderful spot for a restful lunch break.  A kitchen is provided for individual use or catering. To arrange a tour and find out more contact Felicia Hall.       





Upcoming Events


November 3 - 4

Hudson Building Doctor Clinic 

Seminar on Thursday, November 3 at 7:00 p.m.

Murdough Athletic Center at Western Reserve Academy, College Street at High Street, Hudson  

Consultations Friday, November 4, 9:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.  

City of Hudson, Hudson Heritage Association, and Western Reserve Academy


November 7

Fall Networking Night

Edison's Pub, 2373 Professor St., Cleveland

5:30 - 8:30 p.m., registration requested, FREE

Northeast Ohio Chapter of the US Green Building Council


November 11

"Hidden History of Cleveland" Book Release Party

Loganberry Books, 13015 Larchmere Blvd., Cleveland

7:00 p.m., talk and book signing by author Christopher Busta-Peck


November 12

Ohio Historic Preservation Office Awards

Piqua Library, 116 West High St., Piqua

12:00 - 2:00 p.m., registration required, $

Ohio Historic Preservation Office


November 12

Tour of Glenwillow Village Center

29555 Pettibone Rd., Glenwillow

2:00 p.m., meet at village center park gazebo, $

Western Reserve Architectural Historians 


November 13

"John D. Rockefeller: The Life and the Legend"

Rockefeller's Restaurant at the corner of Mayfield and Lee Roads

7:00 p.m., reservations required to  or 216-321-9141, $

Cleveland Heights Historical Society


November 22

Community Luncheon

Wyndham Cleveland at PlayhouseSquare, 1260 Euclid Ave., Cleveland

11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m., registration required , $$ 

Cleveland Restoration Society   


November 30

"Detroit Avenue Revisited"

Lakewood Public Library, 15425 Detroit Ave., Lakewood

7:00 p.m., Main Library Auditorium, FREE 

Lakewood Historical Society 





Save the Date


December 6

An Introduction to Using the Main Street Approach

Portsmouth Welcome Center, 342 Second Street, Portsmouth

9:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., registration required, $

Heritage Ohio






Cleveland Restoration Society
3751 Prospect Avenue

Cleveland, OH  44115

(216) 426-1000