Opportunity Corridor Opens and New Development Steps Forward

Nov 03, 2021

The first traffic will enter Opportunity Corridor Boulevard and its parallel multi-purpose trail in early November. In the adjacent Fairfax Neighborhood, even before the opening of the road new development was being planned and is soon underway in the area dubbed Innovation Square. Innovations Square is bounded by Cedar Avenue to the north, Quincy Avenue to the south, E 105th Street on the east, and includes both sides of E 97th Street.
 
Within that area are two developments that are moving forward. The first is phase one of the beginning of Innovation Square neighborhood with the first residential building at Hudson Avenue and East 105th Street along the Opportunity Corridor.
 
The project will include approximately 80 apartments: 20 studios; 44 one-bedroom units;  and 16 two- bedroom apartments. The project will include market rate and workforce housing. Along with neighboring development projects, this will be the first attempt to develop market-rate and workforce housing at scale outside of downtown, University Circle and the Near West side neighborhoods.
 
Council recently approved financial assistance the the city of Cleveland is offering financial assistance because market rents are not expected to reach the levels that “hotter” market of the city are commanding and as such will not be able to subsidize the lower “workforce” rents as well as the increase in construction costs because of the pandemic.
 
Nearby there is another project under development – at Cedar Avenue and E. 105th Street. In that development there are planned 90 market rate one-bedroom units, 90 micro+ units, 6 standard micro-units, 10 two-bedroom units, along with a planned Meijer Grocery Store on the first floor.
 
This would be Meijer’s first urban store in Ohio, bringing an amenity to the Cleveland Clinic/Fairfax neighborhood and providing a higher quality option to residents of that community. The 196 units will be purpose-built to fill an unmet demand for incoming residents, nurses, and medical students, all of whom the Cleveland Clinic believes can benefit from a walkable housing option combined with a major amenity such as the grocery store. Total project investment is expected to exceed approximately $57 million.

"These projects are game changers in Fairfax," said Councilman Blaine Griffin. "Alone, these are very big deals, the new developments including housing and retail these will spur will transform the neighborhood." 
 
Meanwhile, there are additional phases of Innovation Square planned to include other types of new housing, including single family and town homes with new streets proposed as extensions of Hudson and Frank Avenues with on-street parking, sidewalks and are complemented with adjacent green areas (including natural storm water treatment installations / bio-swales). Pedestrian walkways are imagined with better linking the entire neighborhood to the central community green space, Playwright Park, and providing vital pedestrian connectivity. Green spaces are imagined to be distributed throughout the neighborhood, offering places for children to play, residents to gather, and community gardens.
 
The immediate neighbors include the Cleveland Clinic, Opportunity Corridor, and the New Economy Neighborhood planned redevelopment site. The neighborhood’s location can take full advantage of its proximity to University Circle, offering additional housing options, aiming to be more affordable than current market rate apartment options in surrounding districts.
 
To read a comprehensive piece on Opportunity Corridor and these nearby developments along with others including the Buckeye-Woodhill Choice Neighborhood, the new Cleveland Police Headquarters, Development in Slavic Village, and the rebuilt RTA rapid stations go to the story here in the neo-trans.blog.