Oct 14, 2021

WHO:   Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) officials and project consultants from Stantec and their sub-consultant:

  • Maribeth Feke, RTA Director of Programming & Planning
  • Craig Sklenar, Project Manager, Stantec
  • David Jurca, Principal Seventh Hill Design

WHAT:  25Connects Presentation to City of Cleveland Planning Commission

WHEN:  9 a.m., Friday, October 15, 2021

WHERE: LatinUs Theatre, 2937 W. 25th Street (limited seating).

VIRTUAL LINKS:

Youtube Stream: https://youtu.be/9Pgm9_C41IQ

Webex Meeting Information: https://cityclevelandoh.webex.com/cityclevelandoh/j.php?MTID=mc1bf7eead4671374e2f739d747b8cb2c

WHY:  To seek formal adoption of the 25Connects Plan by the City of Cleveland Planning Commission

25Connects prepares the West 25th corridor for the next level of transit improvement, a fully accessible FTA Compliant Bus Rapid Transit system, with higher quality, more attractive, safer bus stations located conveniently along West 25th. It will increase the efficiency and speed of RTA’s MetroHealth Line providing RTA customers with a faster trip along the corridor using bus-only lanes and signalization improvements.  West 25th is designated as a Priority Corridor in the RTA Strategic Plan given its ridership as one of the highest performing routes in the RTA system (1.8 million boardings per year). The MetroHealth Line offers connections to health care and employment and creates a propensity to increase development along the route.

City Planning Commission approval is one of the first steps of this process. It provides evidence to FTA that the City of Cleveland supports and is working with RTA on this project.  This project is unique in that it has completed a very large-scale planning process well in advance of any engineering or design work.  RTA has established a network of support in the neighborhood, the stakeholders, and the City that will greatly assist the project in moving forward.  This process has resulted in the creation of a strong collaboration between RTA and the City that maximizes the project's benefits to not only improve local public transit options but to also create development projects that are focused on the needs of existing residents.

The combination of the Clark Fulton Together Plan and 25Connects creates powerful momentum for this neighborhood to improve the quality of life.
        

PROJECT BACKGROUND:

25Connects:

  • Represents the first development project RTA has initiated since the Cleveland State Line on Clifton.
  • Connects Downtown Cleveland through 5 neighborhoods (Ohio City, Tremont, Clark-Metro, Brooklyn Centre, and Old Brooklyn) to the suburbs of Parma, Parma Heights Middleburgh Hts, and Strongsville.
  • Identifies several potential development scenarios within the neighborhoods of the Study.
  • Suggests land use and zoning recommendations to the City of Cleveland to make transit- oriented developments easier to finance, design and develop.
  • Assists leveraging the $1 billion MetroHealth Transformation Plan and MetroHealth’s other developments, providing further development incentives along West 25th Street
  • Identifies areas of concern regarding economic displacement along the corridor given the current level of market driven demand.
  • 25connects identifies Transit Oriented Development financing tools that can be used to continue development along the corridor.
  • Serves the Latin-American population or people with Spanish-speaking origins in that neighborhood (46% of the Clark Fulton population identifies as such; the average in the State of Ohio is 5%).

RTA estimates construction costs to be approximately $40-$60 million.

RTA is requesting entrance into the FTA Small Starts program to help fund the project (Small Starts was used for the HealthLine and funds this type of transit capital project).

RTA anticipates awarding a design contract in the first quarter of 2022. Design could take up to two years, with funding sources to be identified following. Construction could begin in 2024 and be complete in 2026.

For more information, please contact:

Maribeth Feke
216-356-3272

Media Contact:

Linda Krecic
216-390-9605 (mobile)