Counclimans Corner - Be a Concerned Citizen

Over the last month and a half a recurring theme I am hearing from neighborhood residents throughout the Northeast side, which includes the East Glenville area, is “where are the street repair crews and does the Public Works Department still have street sweepers?” Good question.

I, like you, am still searching for the mysterious “pothole killer” and at this point will take any street repair crew to address the street conditions on the northeast side of the City.  In all my years in Public office I have never seen city streets in such poor condition.  I am beginning to classify street sweepers in the “Urban Legend” category – in fact, I am expecting to have an encounter with Big Foot along Euclid Creek before I see a street sweeper on the northeast side.

If this wasn’t so serious, and in the case with chuckholes, so dangerous, it would be laughable. However, when residents and motorists tear up their cars and do major damage – it isn’t funny.  The City Department of Public Works has really let our citizens down in a big way by not having a meaningful game plan in place to deal with the road conditions in light of the severe winter we had experienced.

Residents are fed up and don’t want to hear about more tax dollars for the Cleveland Browns and million dollar chandeliers on Euclid Avenue. They, and I, expect a reasonable response to neighborhood quality of life issues. Quite frankly, it is not happening and this is becoming more and more obvious each day.

What can we do? We need to let our voice to be heard. Call the Mayor’s Action Center (216-664-2900) and let them know how you feel and let the Mayor’s Office know (216-664-2220). As Councilman, as you should know, I have no control over the day-to-day operations of City Departments and Divisions; yet, I am bombarded daily by citizens who are absolutely right in their disgust over the lack of urgency and basic City service.  If we are to stabilize and move our neighborhoods in a positive direction the City must be partner with us. Far too often we are seeing the City as an obstacle or roadblock to the delivery of basic and good city services.

This summer will be a real indicator, in my opinion, as to where we are headed in the various neighborhoods that make up our ward, the Greater Collinwood community and the City, as a whole. I urge all residents to continue to be the eyes and ears on your street and in your specific neighborhood. 

Everyone should have my dial-a-number card. Please report neighborhood concerns and problems whether it is high grass, vacant and unmaintained homes or public safety related concerns to the various City Departments and Divisions.  In addition, please feel free to contact me at my office. I may be reached at (216) 664-4236 or via email at

As concerned citizens we must set the standard and the tone for a viable community. If we are not engaged then the powers that be at City Hall or elsewhere will not hear us.  We have come a long way with a whole host of projects and initiatives over these past two years. 

We are on the brink of seeing major improvements to our lakefront and surrounding areas. The Cleveland Range project in Nottingham on St Clair is nearly complete and the Waterloo Streetscape Project is in the homestretch. The Lakeshore Boulevard Relief Sewer is ahead of schedule and the Community is poised for a good and active summer.  With your help and support we will move Ward 8 in a continued positive direction.   

Michael D. Polensek

Resident of neighborhood since 1956. Worked on East 185th street since 1970.

Volume 6, Issue 5, Posted 5:55 PM, 06.09.2014