high-rise, low-rise waste not, want not

Submitted by Susan Miller on Fri, 08/31/2007 - 08:28.

Unbelievable! Though our government has launched a plan to rip down a cultural icon, local firms now announce plans for a high-rise building boom in "Our Town"!

High-rise office buildings on the horizon in Cleveland

Several major companies are exploring new construction to meet needs as leases expire

What sort of partnership is this!? Public private?!

Doesn’t it make sense for Ernst & Young to be eyeing an asbestos abated tower (a classic) across the street from their current location in the financial district? Why do we need to rip down this one and casually toss up a new one? Are we stuck in that 1950s disposable postwar era conspicuous consumerism model? Have we not considered the cost to our environment of all this waste? What about the market? Isn’t it time to take inventory of our built environment and consider how “greening” (and I mean via rehabs) existing buildings might have a greater impact overall for the region? Is this too creative and fiscally conservative a suggestion for Cleveland? Waste not -- want not.

Maybe it is time for the rest of the local community to wake up to the leadership shown in the Ideacenters, the Nottingham Spirks, the Institutes of Music and Art, the CMAs and the Hyatts of the city. These visionary rehabs and additions make (and will make) Cleveland a jewel of innovation and a respecter of the past. They say, we need something – OK first, what do we have? They make stone soup rather than beginning the soup by first clearing a section of forest to plant new plot of land. The county with its new creative class voting block would do well to learn lessons from these creative types. You can flaunt Richard Florida all you want, but learn the lesson the arts teach. Start where you are! Don’t throw out the old – rehab it! We have less and less to waste and in this poor region and in this economically troubled time in our world, it makes more sense for us to take stock of what is available and use it creatively.

Breuer is a master. His tower should be saved. If the county could abate the asbestos and sell the building for high-rise office space, think of the energy it would save one of the high-rise seekers. Someone seeking class A office space could take the cleaned tower from the maws of the county and keep our skyline intact. Add to it if you will, but let’s not see one fall to have another rise. It is wasteful and inappropriate in this day and age. Has no one in this town heard the news of global warming? I find the whole business incongruous!

Is this great planning? Is this the story of cooperation and innovation? What the hell is going on in that partneship in Greater Cleveland? Is this a sports match with each player trying to blindside the other? Let's work together guys!

I read the article and

I read the article and thought just rumors,

 

New construction's cogent cognition challenge

We often must make apt appeals for apt action here downtown.  If the majority makes the move to create and construct anew in mass fashion, let's hope they do so efficiently and effectively.  I've heard criticism that my appeal to build downward as well as upward is 'too forward-thinking' for our region, but should there be such a thing?  Why not embrace true progressivism that inspires and excites the masses. 

If we build anew, double property value by building down as well as up.  Change convention, and do something truly innovative here - and maximize property values while doing so.  This way we take advantage of geothermal energy potentials and, if we green this 'downspace' appropriately we can oxygenate undergrounds and climate control energy efficiently.

Refer to my prior postings to see where this sustainable strategy move might move us in years to come.

Peace.