Envisioning a bright future for Cleveland’s lakefront

Here is what city officials envision for the future of Cleveland's lakefront.

Here is what city officials envision for the future of Cleveland’s lakefront.

by Dan Rafter

Cleveland’s lakefront will soon get a makeover, and three firms that have long done business in this city will be at the center of the project.

The city of Cleveland has approved plans to develop more than 20 acres of lakefront property near the central business district. Cumberland Development and Trammel Crow — operating jointly as Cumberland Lakefront, LLC — will develp the project. Bellwether Enterprise Real Estate Capital will handle the loan-origination and financing end of the $700 million project.

City officials envision more than 1,000 apartment units, 800 parking spaces, 80,000 square feet of office space, 60,000 square feet of retail space and a boutique hotel coming to the lakefront. A charter school serving Cleveland residents who live downtown will also be an important part of the project.

“This project is 25 years in the making and will be transformative for Cleveland,” said Ned Huffman, president of Bellwether Enterprise, in a written statement.

The project’s location is key. It’s near such attractions as the Great Lakes Science Center and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum. The goal is to take a stretch of land that is today barren and turn it, too, into a destination for residents and tourists.

“It’s right in the heart of some of Cleveland’s major attractions, and there is no other property like it in the Midwest that has yet to be developed,” said Richard Pace, chief executive officer of Cumberland Development, in a written statement.

The project includes three phases. The first will cover mixed-use development, while the second and third will focus on residential development.

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