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Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Save the Crane!

Recently, a number of members of the Urban Ohio forum site (linked at right) have begun pondering a new campaign to draw people to Cleveland. (View the thread at http://www.urbanohio.com/forum2/index.php?topic=7198.0) The "Come Home to Cleveland" campaign is, in my eyes, right on and can be one of our best marketing approaches in years to come as we enter into a new era of construction and urban development in Cleveland of a scale that we haven't seen in over a decade. The following was my most recent post to the thread:

Another thought that crossed my mind on the subject pertains to the timing of this campaign... knowing how long some of these projects will take to materialize and the propensity for big projects to either fail or get whittled down to miniature versions of themselves, when this launches, its products need to be visible. That doesn't mean that the apartments need to be ready to inhabit, but that there need to be (at least) cranes in the air.

Those of us geeks on this site know how exciting the sight of progress in the form of cranes can be, but it's not just us. How long has it been since we've had a significant number of construction projects going on Downtown at the same time? We've had one here (the new Courthouse) another there (Pinnacle), but not since the mid-1990s have we seen a quantity to get excited about. Over at the Clinic and UC, construction progress has been more plentiful and concentrated, but the outcomes haven't been nearly as great as the prospects. We've seen one disappointing Clinic building opened after another. CWRU's new housing and the Weatherhead School produced some interesting outcomes. But just wait until we've got the CIM, CMA, the West Quad, and Ford & Euclid all going on at once!

And then think about what we have lined up for Downtown Cleveland with the Avenue District, Flats East Bank, West 9th & Main, and the lots between St. Clair & Superior...potentially all at once! Imagine the excitement in every Clevelander's and every visitor's hearts when we see those cranes in the air! There will be a buzz about town...and the millions of annual visitors will go home to Toledo or Pittsburgh or Indianapolis or Toronto and remark about the amount of construction going on in Cleveland. Minds will start to wander (maybe Cleveland's the place to be...) and people will want to come back to see what we've built!

To paraphrase what one of my professors at CSU (Ned Hill) recently said, "Clevelanders have, for too long, thought of the crane as an endangered species." How true! Let's build and save he crane!


Blogger answer-man said...

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Anonymous Work Station Cranes said...

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