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Is the Port Authority Helping or Getting in the Way?

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Introduction

Recreation in Downtown Cleveland: Is the Port Authority Helping or Getting in the Way? Eric Walk Spring Project Mr. Champ / Mr. McGovern 2 May 2007 The debate continues in Cleveland over the best use of our lakefront. For almost two centuries the lakefront in Cleveland has been mostly industry. Here, like in other cities, we want recreational access to the lakefront. The Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority plays a major role in increasing recreational opportunities in downtown Cleveland in two ways: first, it owns a good part of the lakefront (the number one source of land for recreation.); and second, it occupies much of its own land or leases it for industrial purposes. So, therefore, the port authority is one of the major players in the decision of where and how to put recreation along the lakefront. As with anything it is important to understand the past before we can understand the present. I have found a time line dating to 1818 that documents this history. ...read more.

Middle

� 1978: The Port Authority received Foreign Trade Zone designation for part of Dock 20. This federal designation now extends to the entire dock area. � 1986: The State of Ohio and the City of Cleveland began construction of a seven acre inner harbor between Dock 32 and East 9th Street. � 1998: The Port Authority purchased the ore dock on Whiskey Island from Conrail to ensure the continued availability of ore deliveries at the lowest costs for local steel making operations.1 As you can see our port has a deep rooted history in our community and in our economy. Also, our port has some special features; for instance we have deep water docks allowing us to have large freighters come into our port. Additionally, our port is a destination port in that most of the goods that come in through the port are going somewhere within fifty miles of the dock. Lastly, our Cleveland Bulk Terminal (CBT)2 is amazing in that it has 1850 linear feet of dock with a loop track for ship to rail distribution. ...read more.

Conclusion

If the port were to be moved very far from its current locale there could be great expense taken to dredge a new location in an attempt to recreate deep water docks. In the current debate NOACA is the main intermediary; NOACA has set up a team of four city planners, one of which is from the city planning commission and three outside counsels, who have been holding meetings in different neighborhoods that might be affected and are taking in ideas. Many people like the idea to move the port to the west bank and free up land on the east, although it is unlikely. Thus, I can safely conclude, that the port is one of the biggest players in what will happen to our lakefront. It can either move or stay put. Although, it just wants to continue to exist and are continuously embellishing their own cause to make people think they are important. They are really important to recreation and our economy because they own the land and promote trade and economic growth. The port is a necessity and here to stay. ...read more.

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