$70 million downtown development project moves forward in Lakewood

LAKEWOOD, OH (WOIO) - A new plan for redevelopment in downtown Lakewood is now closer to reality, and the city is transforming several blocks off of Detroit Avenue.

Lakewood will have more businesses, shopping, restaurants, and places to live in the next few years. When asked about what they like about living in Lakewood, residents have plenty to say.

"Oh gosh, everything's so convenient! We don't have to drive anywhere really. We do drive places, but we can buy everything we need in Lakewood, you really don't have to leave," said Marilyn Brundage.

In the future, residents will have even more convenience, as the city plans a $70 million or more redevelopment of the area where Lakewood Hospital used to stand on Detroit between Belle and Marlowe Avenues.

"In Lakewood today, we think about our second century. The city's about 100 years old," said Mayor Mike Summers.

Officials have narrowed the plans down between two developers. Click here to learn more and see the renderings. A look at the renderings from the two different developers shows high rises with green spaces mixed in.

There will be new office space, stores, restaurants and apartments.

The city hopes to break ground during the spring of 2019 and finish construction in 2021.

"Part of the objective is to create some public space as well, which will draw the neighborhood as a center point for pedestrian activities. So that should hopefully create traction for retail that's there," Summers said.

He says this new addition will help support the local businesses already in the area -- and he wants feedback.

"We are looking forward to, welcome and need your input as we move through various steps of this project. So stay tuned, and be sure to tune in," he said.

Brundage is happy with the plans and optimistic about Lakewood's future.

"I think it's a great thing, great community to live in. We're really happy. Lots of young people and vibrancy," Brundage said.

The mayor says that the three block area off of Detroit Avenue is getting a $150 million transformation in total, including upgrades to existing housing and construction of a new family health clinic.

The city of Lakewood says traffic and parking will be an important consideration as the project moves forward.

They have also asked the developers to preserve the historic Curtis Block building on the construction site that sits along Detroit Avenue.

A public meeting will be held at Lakewood City Hall on July 25th at 6:30 p.m.

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