Public Square to get a makeover - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Public Square to get a makeover

Public Square will soon get a makeover with green spaces, fountains and an updated promenade. (Source: WOIO) Public Square will soon get a makeover with green spaces, fountains and an updated promenade. (Source: WOIO)
A rendering of the proposed changes. (Source: WOIO) A rendering of the proposed changes. (Source: WOIO)

There's a new push to remake Public Square in downtown Cleveland. Another local company is pledging millions of dollars to get work started and completed before the 2016 Republican National Convention.

It's a $32 million project. The drab square will be made over with green spaces, fountains and a space called Key Bank Promenade. Key Bank announced a $4 million gift to the project.

"This is a new era for Cleveland. It's the next generation that's coming and this transforms this public space into something that will excite, engage and make us all proud for a very long time," said Beth Mooney, Key Bank chair and CEO.

Tony Coyne, chair of the city's group planning commission, says Key Bank's gift has the group well on its way to financing the project, and things should get moving soon.

"We intend to see construction begin by the end of this year and our goal is to complete it by 2016, probably in June of 2016," explained Coyne.

A key aspect to the project is permanently closing Ontario Street through the square. Superior Avenue will shrink in size and sometimes for special events, close completely. Traffic will be affected, especially RTA traffic.

CEO Joe Calabrese released a statement on the RTA's website. Calabrese states he's optimistic the new design will keep public transportation easy.

"Our goal is that a new design not only maintains, but enhances, the convenience and attractiveness of public transit in and around downtown," he said.


READ THE FULL STATEMENT HERE


Coyne says there still are different options on the table and they are working with RTA to make this work.

"It's still part of a traffic engineering study that is being finalized, so that we know exactly how to accommodate all the traffic that goes through the square," said Coyne.

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