In honor of my birthday today, I thought I would give myself (and all of you!) one of my very first and very favorite blog posts from 2009. Enjoy!
Kent architecture alum, Ted Ferringer M.Arch ’08, MUD ’08, took these photos while exploring the urban outskirts of Cleveland. His descriptions of place are coupled with the photography.
This photo is from the roof of the old Howard Johnson’s hotel at the north end of E. 55th Street, just off of I90. This photo was taken during the Labor Day weekend airshow, which some friends and I spent the afternoon watching from the roof. That roof probably has the best view in the city.
A common collaborator of mine and good friend, Ryan DeBiase, embellished the day’s events in a blog post, here. It’s a work of creative non-fiction; some events are true, some are complete lies. Granted, he still re-caped the day’s events better then I ever could.
Its pretty ironic that the demo of the building started, then stopped, and now looks like it was bombed. It seems somehow appropriate, however, that the lies of that day eventually became a sort of fact.
6611 Euclid Ave. (1) and (2)
These photos were taken during another urban exploration with my common companion for such things, Mr. DeBiase. This building intrigued us the second we saw it after moving to Cleveland. It’s located along the Euclid Corridor, and its basic story is that it used to be light industrial/warehouse space (I believe it housed a garment factory for a number of years) before eventually being abandoned.
When the Euclid Corridor project started, the front bay of the building on the Euclid Ave. side was cut off to accommodate the wider street. For quite a while the building sat unsecured, with the entire front of the building sitting open–creating an amazing real-life building section.
Again, there seems to something inherently poetic about having to cut into the former soul of the city (a former manufacturing building)–creating a monumental scar–for progress to take place.
The RTA, which owns the building, has since covered the front of the building with giant metal panels, creating a new billboard/super graphic along the corridor, promising better times ahead. Like all things Cleveland, the potential is amazing, if perhaps forever unrealized.
I also happened to do a real estate case study for this property in a real estate class at CSU’s Levin College. This property would make an amazing technology/health care incubator site, as the shell of the building is in amazing shape, in an amazing location. It could make an incredible mixed use, TOD development.
(Ted Ferringer lives in Ohio City and works for a local architecture firm.)