Friday, February 17, 2012

Owners of Cleveland's Historic Downtown May Building propose gutting it for Casino Parking

Image from the Wikipedia (public domain)

More about this building

OK, they were turned down by the city planning commission.

The building's owners, a Florida-based investor group, had hoped to create 734 parking spaces on four floors and remove the windows for ventilation.

An architect working on the project said that that building's ground floor would be maintained for retail, and that housing and offices were possible on the upper floors. But plans submitted to the city focused on the parking proposal, which was limited to the second through fifth floors.

The commission seemed shocked that with all the "investment", in the area, like the nearby, football, baseball and basketball arenas, the soon to be constructed massive convention center and casino, that the owners didn't see more value in renovating the building for any higher use.

Of course- creating massive single use facilities, specifically aimed at bringing in huge crowds to such a small area was almost certain to inspire just this kind of development. Already several other historic buildings had been torn down for casino parking.

My sad guess is that these neighboring developments, taken as a whole subtract, rather than add to the building's potential value for offices, or residential. How many people say, gee I want to have an office right by a casino (a small casino might be different) or a huge stadium? Fewer are likely to want to live there.

Even so, Cleveland, still has the bones of a great downtown-and this building is a very big part of that. There is also a tight and growing demand for residential space downtown. One can only hope this building can make it.

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