As we transition into Spring, there are a lot of activities and initiatives underway. Like flowers, come construction barrels. The biggest project is rebuilding of East 152 Street which has begun in earnest. This project, long overdue for the Greater Collinwood community, will run through all of this year and possibly into early 2018. Included in the project is a new road surface and the repair and replacement of gas & water lines and sewer work. Please be careful driving the roadway and watch for detours during the course of this much needed project which runs from Waterloo Road south to the East Cleveland line.
Cleveland City Council is presently holding General Fund Budget Hearings. I have a lot of questions with regard to the budget and city services and how the passage of Issue 32, the city income tax increase, will address those concerns. The Council has a lot of work to do and I look forward to being engaged over the next three weeks in this process. The budget we pass by April 1 MUST be a “real people’s” budget with an emphasis on “quality of life” issues.
I wish to officially welcome to the Ward 8 community SunBelt Rentals, who have taken over the former George Whalley Co., on S. Waterloo Road. This will be their first eastside location specializing in renting and leasing of large and small construction equipment and supplies. Also, I would like to welcome Ghent Machine, who is relocating to the former Coyne Textile facility on Kirby Road, off Eddy Road, bringing 50 jobs from South Euclid. This is a real success story for they will occupy a building which was vacant bringing new life to his section of Kirby. I wish much success to these companies and others who believe that Ward 8 is a good place to do business. I was glad to be able to assist these companies in relocating to our ward with city assistance in the form of low interest loans and zoning help.
We are still awaiting an update from Cleveland MetroParks with regard to the timetable on the reconstruction of the historic pier and bluff areas at Euclid Beach. Announcements will be coming in the near future regarding other positive improvements for the parks. NEORSD is presently working on Euclid Creek south of East 185th Street addressing and repairing the concrete abutment walls.
There has been a change of leadership at the Northeast Shores Development Corporation and I look forward to working with the Staff as well as the new Board. I encourage all residents to get involved in both of our development corporations. Their work is critical for the growth and development of our community. Collinwood Nottingham Villages Dev. Corp. services our community south of the CSX tracks and may be reached at (216) 383-9772 and Northeast Shores Dev. Corp. services our community north of the tracks and may be reached at (216) 481-7660.
On a personal note, I wish to inform all Ward 8 residents, that after long consideration, thought and prayer, I have decided to seek re-election to the Ward 8 Council seat. I don’t have to tell anyone how strongly I feel about our Ward 8 community and the Greater Collinwood area. My legislative record and my attendance record speak for themselves; in fact, I put them up against anyone who has ever served in Cleveland City Council. I look forward to seeing many of you at our ward’s events and meetings throughout this Spring, Summer and Fall.
Speaking of elections, the councilmembers who will be elected this November 8th, will once again have to deal with redistricting and redrawing ward boundaries. Then, who knows what is going to happen with East Cleveland which may entail redistricting once again. We all know what we went through the last time we had to redraw our ward boundaries with efforts to divide the greater Collinwood community. I am committed to protecting the Ward 8 community from any further disenfranchisement during this redistricting process.
As always, you may reach me at my office at (216) 664-4236 or via email at email@example.com.
Michael D. Polensek
Resident of neighborhood since 1956. Worked on East 185th street since 1970.