To the Editor:
(Plain Press, October 2015) At the Lakefront West Shoreway Public Meeting — held at St. Malachi Parrish on Tuesday, September 8 – residents of Lakeview Terrace and Ohio City took a critical step beyond speaking truth to power. Turning out in large numbers, the two communities laid the groundwork for working together in the future. While the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) shamelessly kowtowed to the trucking industry, residents from both sides of Detroit Avenue pounded away at quality of life issues with a laser-like focus.
The move to close the eastbound entrance ramp on West 28th street – which would significantly increase the amount of traffic through Ohio City — has been billed as a response to years of complaints driven by concern for the safety of Lakeview Terrace school children. This, laughably, begs the question: When did ODOT and the city of Cleveland develop an iota of concern about the safety of the children of Lakeview Terrace? Their reluctance to provide additional police protection, fill potholes, put in sidewalks, repave roads and put up stoplights at dangerous intersections borders on criminal.
Fortunately, the trucking industry’s divide-and-conquer strategy hit a snag when residents of Ohio City began echoing variations of Black Lives Matters. Rather than falling into the trap of intensified racial division, residents on both sides astutely focused their attention on the cozy relationship between the city of Cleveland, ODOT and the lucrative trucking industry operating out of the Flats. The trucking industry is the primary beneficiary of the Lakefront West Shoreway Plan. The rest of the plan, including the popular Multi-Use Trail, is little more than smoke and mirrors.
The question remains, however; will the two communities begin coordinating their efforts in a manner that could send shock waves through Cleveland’s legislative-industrial complex?
Jeff Mixon, Precinct Committeeperson
Editor’s Note: The next Lakefront West Shoreway public meeting will be held on September 29th at 5 p.m. at Lakeview Terrace Community Center.