LETTER to The Editor of The Plain Dealer, 11-11-07, by Joseph W. Kunzelman
``Who will stand up to preserve more land?
In response to the Oct. 17 [2007 PD] article "Farming done here from now, forever":
Thank you, Jarvis Babcock and family, for the generous, unselfish gift of 1,018 acres that surely would have been destroyed by developers.
I live in Avon. We have seen judges and city administrators allow aggressive developers to carve our city up like a big, fat turkey: "Ah, more retail. This will solve all our problems." These self-centered, power-hungry individuals and companies have destroyed acre after acre of woods and trees while driving our last little bit of wildlife up on to Interstate 90 to be slaughtered.
Did anyone really think that the I-90/[Nagel] Road interchange was not going to happen? Does anyone honestly believe that this will not continue to open the door for more businesses and residents to leave Cleveland, Lorain and the inner-ring suburbs?
Unfortunately, nobody has the guts or the money to stop this travesty.
Where are the Babcocks of Avon and the rest of Northeast Ohio?''
Joseph W. Kunzelman, Avon
[Regarding the impact of the Nagel Rd. interchange, one of the most important things is to NOT DESTROY Detroit Road. The key to solving that problem is having alternative ways to go from Jaycox to Nagel, besides Detroit: south marginal -- Middleton - Avon Rd.; north marginal -- Chester - Clemens; both interchange marginals opening on Bradley.]
NEWS ARTICLE from The Plain Dealer, 11-3-07, by Joan Mazzolini, Plain Dealer Reporter
``Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals compete with their expanding medical centers
Cleveland's two huge hospital systems are in a competitive game of leapfrog, hopping from one suburb to the next in pursuit of the well-insured patients ...
But it's an expensive endeavor to chase patients, or try to poach them from other hospital systems.
And the recent moves have the two Cleveland systems butting up against other hospital systems in Summit and Lorain counties that don't seem that pleased by the closeness.
"There are four hospitals that are in Lorain County and none operating at capacity," said Jim Simone, vice president of finance for EMH Regional Health Care System. The Elyria hospital will be celebrating its 100th anniversary next year.
Simone said the Clinic's plans for a new big medical facility in Avon will "make it difficult for all of us to survive."
"There's not a need for it," Simone said. "We don't need more facilities. There's only so many chest X-rays you can do, even if you put X-ray machines on every corner." ...''
To reach this Plain Dealer reporter: firstname.lastname@example.org
NEWS ARTICLE from The Plain Dealer, 12-25-07, by Michael Scott, Plain Dealer Reporter
``AVON -- As development spreads, bad air follows, critics say Smog sprawl - it could be coming soon to a suburb near you.
Smog sprawl is the environmental notion that air pollution trails after residential and industrial development as it surges out from the city center to once-rural suburbia and beyond.
In other words, as we move out to the country, we drive longer and farther to get to work, we pump out more pollutants along the way and foul up the fresh air we drove out there for in the first place ...
[Northeast Ohio] is already under federal mandate to reduce air pollution -- both ozone and particulates -- by 2009, putting virtually every transportation or commercial/industrial development decision under an increasingly detailed environmental microscope.
But there's not always a clear-cut answer when balancing the transportation needs of one growing community with the broader concerns of the region.
That's why planners have to consider, for example, whether the privately funded and fast-tracked interchange to be built in Avon will add to air pollution in that Lorain County suburb -- and the entire region.
Critics are certain that it will.
"This is a community where they're putting in a new interchange and where they're planning low-density, automobile-dependent land use," said David Beach, director of the Center for Regional Sustainability of the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. "That's hardly a sustainable approach in an age of climate change and scarcity of energy resources." ...
The city's population surged from about 7,000 to more than 17,000 in just more than a decade. Further, it ranked as the 67th-fastest growing community in the nation from 2000-07, Mayor James Smith said. The community already has two I-90 exits: Ohio 611 on the western end and Ohio 83 near the center ...''
To reach this Plain Dealer reporter: email@example.com
Commentator 1 wrote:
``Methanol and oil from algae are probably our way out of the Kazakh War of 2020, just a little more than 12 years from now. The greed of the owners of oil wells, if we don't do something about it, will plunge us into a destruction that will make the sub-prime crisis look like a Sunday-school picnic. Also, push now for commuter rail so we have some way to get around when the Straits of Hormuz are blocked and every pipeline in the Middle East is blown up.''
[For more, see "Crossing the Rubicon" by Michael C. Ruppert
On the web see www.fromthewilderness.com/free/ww3/index.shtml]
NEWS ARTICLE from The Plain Dealer, 1-26-08, by Joan Mazzolini, Plain Dealer Reporter
``Clinic loses battle with Beachwood schools for records in tax case
The Cleveland Clinic must turn over financial information that the Beachwood Board of Education requested to make its case that the hospital's Cedar Road facility should not be exempted from property taxes, the Board of Tax Appeals ruled yesterday ...
The board's decision should move forward a case that has languished for two years, after the Clinic appealed the Ohio tax commissioner's decision that the property is taxable.
The commissioner ruled that the Clinic's Cedar Road facility was an office building for physicians where little if any charitable care is provided and that it is not eligible for a property tax exemption.
The Beachwood schools had challenged the Clinic's request for property tax exemption. Ohio law allows school districts, which receive the bulk of property taxes, to challenge exemptions.
Districts with large Clinic facilities, such as Independence, Willoughby- Eastlake and Solon, have followed Beachwood's lead. The outcome of the Beachwood case will affect their challenges ...''
To reach this Plain Dealer reporter: firstname.lastname@example.org
NEWS ARTICLE from The Morning Journal, 3-23-08, By SCOT ALLYN, Morning Journal Writer
[New Interstate 90 interchange at Nagel Road is scheduled for completion in 2010]
``AVON -- ... The Nagel Road interchange was approved by the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency Oct. 12  ... The project, estimated to cost more than $20 million, is scheduled for completion in 2010 ...
TranSystems Corp., a traffic planning consultant, is creating the final engineering drawings for the interchange with the Ohio Department of Transportation ... This alone costs $1.7 million ...
The drawings should be done in April , and the city will seek bids to do the work then. Many requirements of the Federal Highway Administration, including environmental, archaeological and other studies had to be performed ...
Avon Mayor Jim Smith said the city had to fight a tiring battle with Cuyahoga County authorities for permission to build the interchange, whose costs will be paid by the city and the Jacobs Group, a developer who owns 212 acres near the site, [and by the citizens of Avon because taxes that would have gone to Avon now will have to be used to pay off the TIFF bonds sold to pay for (how much?) of the interchange.]
"It took a lot of energy out of us, and took focus away from other things," he said. "It put a lot of stress on everyone here, and it felt like they didn't want the city of Avon to progress." ...''
NEWS ARTICLE from The Plain Dealer, 6-25-08, by Joan Mazzolini, Plain Dealer Reporter
``Cleveland Clinic expected to get more than $1 billion in bonds to pay off old debt and to finance new facilities
The Cleveland Clinic is expected to get approval today from a state agency to issue more than $1 billion in bonds to pay off old debt and to finance the new Avon and Twinsburg facilities.
The $1.02 billion in bonds would be issued through the Ohio Higher Education Facility Commission. A change in state law allows the commission to issue the low-interest bonds for nonprofit hospitals just as it does for nonprofit Ohio colleges and universities.
Clinic officials told the commission in May that they planned to use $620 million to pay off old hospital bonds.
Those older bonds are "auction-rate," the officials told the commission. Auction-rate securities - often in the form of bonds - had offered hospitals and municipalities ultra-low interest rates on their debt.
But interest rates on these securities reset every seven, 28 or 35 days through an auction at which investors can sell off their bonds. Trouble started last year after the mortgage crisis when investors also lost confidence in auction-rate securities. If auctions fail - too few buyers to too many sellers - the interest rates that hospitals and cities pay can rise exorbitantly. Clinic officials said some of the interest rates on the bonds had risen to the maximum of 15 percent ...
About $120 million will go to facilities the Clinic plans to build in Avon and Twinsburg ...``
To reach this Plain Dealer reporter: email@example.com, 216-999-4563
NEWS ARTICLE from The Sun, 6-26-08, By Bryan Story, firstname.lastname@example.org
``AVON -- The Richard E. Jacobs Group is continuing to buy up land near the site of the proposed Interstate 90 interchange at Nagel Road.
The Jacobs group acquired an 89-acre parcel on the north side of Chester Road just west of Jaycox Road, costing $8.9 million.
The land is close to the site of Avon Crossing, a new shopping center owned by Jacobs that is under construction and will be anchored by JC Penney and Lowe's stores.
Jacobs also owns a 220-acre site at the corner of Chester and Nagel roads that will likely be the site for a new Cleveland Clinic center and an office development ...
When the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency was debating whether to approve the in terchange, Richard Jacobs wrote a letter to the Agency urging them to let Avon ... move forward with the project ...''
NEWS ARTICLE from The Chronicle-Telegram, 6-25-08, by Brad Dicken
``Jacobs Group buys Avon land; stays mum on plans
AVON -- The Richard E. Jacobs Group has purchased nearly 89 acres of land between I-90 and Chester Road in Avon, but the company isn't yet saying what the land will be used for.
"The Jacobs Group does not talk about plans," said company spokesman Bill Fullington.
James Eppele, vice president of the Cleveland-based company, had suggested earlier this year that at least half of the property would be turned into office space, although he said it could also end up being restaurants and stores.
The land, which was technically purchased by a limited liability company for Jacobs, was bought from Donald Brown for nearly $8.9 million on June 9 , according to records in the Lorain County auditor's office.
Avon Mayor Jim Smith said the land is located next to the law firm of Wickens, Herzer, Panza, Cook & Batista and runs to the corner of Jaycox Road ...
The land is about the same distance from the state Route 83 interchange off Interstate 90 as it is from a new interchange the city plans to build farther east ...
The Jacobs Group also is working with the Cleveland Clinic on a development off Nagel Road that could bring about 300 jobs to the area.''
Contact Brad Dicken at email@example.com.
NEWS ARTICLE from The Plain Dealer, 6-24-08, by Michelle Jarboe, Plain Dealer Reporter
``Richard E. Jacobs Group buys about 89 acres along Interstate 90 in Avon
Property along I-90 recently rezoned for office, commercial use
The Richard E. Jacobs Group has purchased about 89 acres along Interstate 90 in Avon and has designs on another large chunk of land nearby.
City officials confirmed Monday that Jacobs was the buyer who paid almost $8.9 million on June 9  for property southwest of Chester and Jaycox roads. The developer, based in Westlake, bought the land from Donald Brown using the name NWQ Jaycox/I-90 LLC, according to state and Lorain County records. A spokesman for the developer declined to comment Monday.
The deal expands Jacobs' significant portfolio in a growing suburb. The developer plans a 220-acre development anchored by a new Cleveland Clinic regional campus along Nagel Road, near a proposed new interchange for I-90.
Jacobs also is developing the nearby Avon Crossing shopping center, with tenants including JCPenney and Lowe's Home Improvement. Avon officials say the developer has another 100-plus acres under contract along the north side of Chester ...
Most of that property, up for rezoning at a planning commission meeting in July , belongs to Brown. After selling the land south of Chester, Brown still owns more than 150 acres to the north, according to county records.''
To reach this Plain Dealer reporter: firstname.lastname@example.org
NEWS ARTICLE from The Morning Journal, 7-31-08, by SCOT ALLYN, Morning Journal Writer
Zoning changes OK'd for future Avon interchange site
``AVON -- Hotels, restaurants, office and retail could be in the future for land on Chester Road near the future Nagel Road interchange with Interstate 90.
Last night [7-30-08], zoning changes for future commercial development on land owned by the Richard E. Jacobs Group were approved by the Avon Planning Commission.
The zoning changes are for a 5-acre parcel on the south side of Chester Road that the Jacobs Group is under contract to purchase within an 88-acre parcel it bought in June, according to Jim Eppele, vice president of real estate development for the company. The commission also approved rezoning for about two-thirds of a 104-acre parcel the Jacobs Group has under contract on the north side of Chester Road. Both parcels are west of Jaycox Road.
The land is zone for office space and the zoning change is for multi-use. Eppele said his company foresees a mixture of uses for the land, which is currently undeveloped ...
The rezoning changes will go to Avon City Council Monday, Aug. 4  for the first of three public readings and council vote, according to Clinton Pelfrey, council's representative on the planning commission ...
The Richard E. Jacobs Group is also developing the Avon Crossings shopping center on SR 83 at Schneider Court. A J.C. Penney's store is on schedule to open there Oct. 5,  and a Lowe's home improvement store is also under construction, Eppele said.
The Nagel Road interchange, which will be the first easterly exit from I-90 in Lorain County, is still on schedule to break ground next April  ...
Avon started about five months ago to acquire property to build the interchange and its ramps ... All the land necessary to build the exits and entrances should be acquired in the next two to three months ... The interchange is scheduled to open to traffic at the end of 2010 ...''
NEWS ARTICLE from The Plain Dealer, 8-4-08, by Joan Mazzolini, Plain Dealer Reporter
``When 400 new hospital beds open this fall in Cleveland, Southwest General Hospital's president fears a vacuum effect on his patients. "I lose sleep at night thinking about when the Cleveland Clinic opens the buildings, and we hear the giant sucking noise," Thomas A. Selden said ...
Independent community hospitals -- religious, ethnic and charitable institutions -- were once a Greater Cleveland hallmark. Now, Southwest; Parma; Medina General; EMH Regional Healthcare System, with the Elyria and Amherst hospitals; and Lake Hospital System, with its two hospitals, are all that's left.
MetroHealth Medical Center is an independent, but as a large county-owned, public teaching hospital, it stands apart, as does Akron General Medical Center, also a teaching hospital ...
Hospital mergers and expansions ... are fueled, in part, by the strength numbers give a system when negotiating contracts with health insurers or suppliers. And urban hospitals, which shoulder larger shares of uninsured patients but often have the cachet of being a heart- or cancer-center powerhouse, look at the suburban partners as a feeder system to the main hospital.
That leaves the small hospital systems and independents looking for strategies to shore up their patient bases. "The biggest threat to us is they are buying up doctors' practices," said Patricia Ruflin, Parma Community General Hospital president and chief executive.
When the Clinic or UH [University Hospital] purchase doctor practices, those doctors often stop admitting patients to the independent hospitals, sending them to the big systems instead.
UH and Clinic officials see it differently.
"University Hospitals is guided by a philosophy of community-based care designed to meet the health care needs of patients and physicians," UH President Achilles Demetriou said in a prepared statement. "We strive to build relationships with other hospitals to best meet the needs of the communities we serve.
"For example, we currently partner with Southwest General to provide pediatric and oncology services, and Lake Hospitals also is a vital partner with us in oncology services."
The Clinic also collaborates with independent hospitals. Parma's heart surgeon, for example, is a Clinic doctor who does most of his surgery at Parma, Clinic spokeswoman Eileen Sheil said ...
This "Switzerland strategy" of partnering with the two big systems has had some success, said J.B. Silvers, professor of health systems management at Case Western Reserve University. "So far this has worked to give them some of the benefit without losing their identity ...
"Cleveland is much further advanced in the consolidation of hospitals than many others," said Debra A. Draper, associate director of the Center for Studying Health System Change. The center tracks health care changes in 12 communities, including Greater Cleveland. "A lot of physicians are becoming employed by hospitals. They have to declare their allegiance to UH or the Clinic ...
As the Clinic and UH systems have expanded, old rivals have changed their views. Southwest and Parma, once competitors, now see the Cleveland Clinic as competition ...
EMH Regional Healthcare System President Kevin Martin no longer looks at the Lorain hospital as his foe. He, too, views the Clinic, which plans to open a large medical office building in Avon, as his main rival.
"For so long we had been competitors and were hostile toward each other," Martin said of the Lorain hospital, part of a Cincinnati-based hospital chain called Catholic Health Partners."Now, we're peers."
EMH, like others, added services that helped it stand out. It started a fitness center in Avon and later added an emergency department.
Martin said he wants to develop partnerships with his doctors, similar to what the Summa system has done toward establishing jointly owned hospital-doctor facilities ...
Selden, Ruflin and Martin also are beginning to talk about ways to cooperate. Ultimately, their hospitals might partner in things such as outpatient centers. They would share costs and resulting revenue and bring medical services closer to their patients ...''
NEWS ARTICLE from The Morning Journal, 9-21-08, By Scot Allyn, sallyn@MorningJournal.com
``Jacobs Group buying property around proposed I-90 interchange
AVON -- In spite of a Wall Street meltdown, plunging retail sales and nationally new home starts sinking to their lowest level since 1991, one Cleveland-area developer ... [has] acquired more land this summer near the future Nagel Road interchange on Interstate 90.
In August , The Richard E. Jacobs Group closed a deal on 103 acres on the north side of Chester Road west of Jaycox Road for $3 million, across the street from 88 acres it purchased in June. Tomorrow [9-22-08], Avon City Council will vote on rezoning for part of the acreage that would allow stores, office space, restaurants and hotels to be built in the wooded area.
This summer's acquisition is in addition to 213 acres the Jacobs Group bought in 1999 from the Norfolk Southern Railway on Nagel Road, north of Interstate 90, according to Jim Eppele, vice president for real estate development for the Richard E. Jacobs Group ...
The Jacobs Group sold 40 acres of the 213-acre parcel to the Cleveland Clinic, which plans a medical center there, according to Heather Phillips, a Clinic spokeswoman.
The Jacobs Group is also developing the Avon Crossing retail center at Chester Road and SR 83, where a 104,000-square-foot J.C. Penney store is scheduled to open Saturday [9-27-08]. The J.C. Penney store will include a 1,500-square-foot Sephora cosmetics and perfume center inside, according to J.C. Penney's spokesman Tim Lyons.
Avon Crossing will include a Lowe's home-improvement store and Arby's restaurant set to open this fall, according to Bill Fullington, a Jacobs spokesman. Another 20,000-square-foot one-story retail building is set to open next spring for multiple tenants, Fullington said ...
The City of Avon has been acquiring property to build the Nagel Road interchange, and groundbreaking is scheduled for summer or early fall of 2009 ... Depending on weather, drivers should be using the entrance and exit ramps by December 2010. Although planned as a $19 million project, the interchange is now estimated to have a $25 million price tag ... Bids on the interchange construction will be sought by June or July  ...''
ARTICLE from The Plain Dealer, 9-19-08
[History of the Chagrin Highlands development]
``The area, owned by Cleveland, totals 630 acres in Beachwood, Highland Hills, Orange and Warrensville Heights.
In 1988, the city offered development rights for the mostly vacant land to Figgie International, a Fortune 500 company that had abandoned Cleveland for Virginia a few years earlier. In 1989, Figgie signed a deal to build and anchor a corporate office park.
The city and the suburbs agreed to a 50-50 split of income taxes from the [presumed] well-paid workers at the park. The State spent more than $100 million for express lanes on Interstate 271 and an interchange at Harvard Road ...
City officials later learned that industrialist Harry E. Figgie Jr. and his development partner, Dick Jacobs, all along had secretly planned to use the land to build a large mall.
The revelation prompted then-Mayor Michael R. White to call the project "one of the greatest swindles in Cleveland's history."
In 2006, after years of squabbles between the city and Jacobs, large retail stores began opening on 25 acres in Warrensville Heights ...
This week [9-21-08], manufacturing giant Eaton Corp. announced it favors leaving its downtown Cleveland headquarters for Chagrin Highlands. [Losing] the city's largest Fortune 500 company would be [a blow to Cleveland] ...''
NEWS ARTICLE from The Morning Journal, 11-12-08. By ALAN INGRAM, aingram@MorningJournal.com
``1st phase to develop Avon land for Clinic underway
AVON -- The Cleveland Clinic has owned land in Avon for nearly a year, and officials are now preparing to present the first phase of a project to city planners.
The plans calls for a 120,000 -square-foot Family Health Center and a 61,000-square-foot Ambulatory Surgery Center on about half of the approximately 40-acre site, according to plans submitted to city officials ...
The two buildings, parking lot and the entrances on Nagel Road and Just Imagine Drive are part of the first phase of the project. The property is north of Just Imagine Drive and east of Nagel Road.
URS Corp., the engineering firm for the project, is expected to make its first presentation of the project to the Avon Planning Commission during a meeting on Nov. 19 .
During the meeting, planning commissioners will have a chance to offer their thoughts on the project and how it is proposed ...
Planning Commissioners will also get a chance to review the traffic study that has already been completed. Officials decided to do the traffic study while they were working on the plans for the Interstate 90 and Nagel Road interchange so work would not have to be redone later.
The second phase of the project will be built to the north of the Family however, have not yet been submitted ...
"We're looking forward to presenting our preliminary plans for the site next week, and at this time, that's all the details that we can share," said Heather Phillips, spokesperson for the Cleveland Clinic.
An official with URS did not return calls for comment yesterday [11-11-08].''
NEWS ARTICLE from The Chronicle-Telegram, 11-12-08, by Jason Hawk
``Cleveland Clinic has big plans for Avon
AVON -- Cleveland Clinic wants to bring four stories of doctors' offices and a two-story outpatient surgical center to Avon, along with 300 to 500 jobs.
City officials have been working with Cleveland Clinic for the last six months to map out an 181,000-square-foot facility east of Nagel Road, just north of where the new Interstate 90 interchange will be constructed ...
Joe Ferenczy, of Cleveland architecture and engineering firm URS Corp., has submitted development drawings to the city showing the layout of the proposed 40.6-acre site.
The drawings show a 120,000-square-foot health facility and a 61,000-square-foot surgical center, surrounded by 900 parking spots. The site is laid out along Just Imagine Drive and would connect to Nagel Road through property owned by the Richard E. Jacobs Group.
Ferenczy's firm, which represents both Cleveland Clinic and the Jacobs Group, is expected to make a presentation 7:30 p.m. next Wednesday [11-19-08] to the Avon Planning Commission.
Talks about the project started four years ago, but Mayor Jim Smith said the regional health care giant wanted confirmation that a new interchange would be built at Nagel Road and Interstate 90 before it would move into the neighborhood ...
Smith said taxes from jobs at the hospital would help pay for the ramps to the highway, on which construction is expected to start next fall .
"Medical is such a paramount industry in Ohio," Smith said. "In Lorain County and Ohio, we need to reinvent ourselves. The days of the auto and steel industries sustaining us are long gone."
"Medical jobs can't really be outsourced, and there is always demand for them," he said. "While computer support jobs are being outsourced to India, and Ford and GM are fighting to keep plants open, medical jobs are stable," Smith said ...
The Jacobs Group owns [more than another 160] acres of commercial land around the proposed site ... The company, which participated in a traffic study for the area near the future interchange, has made it clear that it wants to woo retailers, restaurants and hotels there over the next 30 years.
Smith said a groundbreaking for the Cleveland Clinic could come early next fall .
A media spokeswoman for the Cleveland Clinic declined to comment on the plans for Avon, saying only that her company is looking forward to next week's presentation to the Planning Commission.''
Contact Jason Hawk at email@example.com.
NEWS ARTICLE from The Morning Journal, 11-20-08, By CHANDA NEELY, cneely@MorningJournal.com
``Cleveland Clinic tells Avon plans
AVON -- Representatives from Cleveland Clinic presented plans for the first phase of the project to build a family health center in Avon last night [11-19-08] to the city Planning Commission, though a time line for construction has not been set ...
Nearly one year ago, Cleveland Clinic purchased a 40-acre parcel north of Just Imagine Drive and east of Nagel Road. They have plans to build a 120,000-square-foot Family Health Center and a 61,000-square-foot Ambulatory Surgery Center.
Brian Smith, director of strategic project development at Cleveland Clinic, told the Planning Commission that the family health center will be a four-story building filled with mostly doctors' offices and the two-story surgery center will provide 24-hour emergency service.
"The Ambulatory Surgery Center will be a free-standing 24-hour emergency surgical center," Smith said. "It will be an emergency department that's open 24 hours. At this time, I'm not sure if it is going to be a trauma center."
One of the access roads to the health and surgery centers will be called Cleveland Clinic Boulevard ... Smith said the buildings with be large compared to other health centers. There will be 900 parking spaces to accommodate all the people.
"The parking is designed to keep the people close, but there is also an open green area," Smith said. "This site has been carefully engineered. Storm water don't just immediately run off, but it has a chance to return to the ground." ...
Mayor Jim Smith was pleased with the project. "It looks like you've utilized the property excellently," said Mayor Smith to a representative from Cleveland Clinic following last night's presentation. "I can see nothing that concerns me whatsoever. I'm glad you're here."
URS, the architect on the project, completed a Cleveland Clinic facility which opened recently in West Palm Beach, Fla. The company also did the work on a Cleveland Clinic facility which opened in downtown Toronto.
"Each of our facilities are unique," [Brian] Smith said. "We don't have a cookie cutter process. This (Avon) site is a very valuable and very beautiful site. Our facilities in West Palm Beach and Toronto are all not the same."''
NEWS ARTICLE from The Plain Dealer, 2-25-09. by Sarah Jane Tribble, Plain Dealer Reporter
[Clinic postpones in Avon]
``Cleveland Clinic continues to grow despite recession, but will delay some construction ...
Some highlights of Dr. Toby Cosgrove's annual State of the Clinic address:
Some 877 patents filed, 255 granted.
Research funding grew 6 percent to $258 million.
Number of employees grew 6 percent to 39,250.
New facility in West Palm Beach, Fla., opened.
On target to build a national reference lab on main campus, could employ 1,000 ...
The Clinic has forged relationships for new operations in Las Vegas and Abu Dhabi, completed construction on a new facility in West Palm Beach, Fla., and will soon announce the location of a national research laboratory that could employ 2,000 on its main campus in Cleveland.
"I know we're going forward stronger than we've ever been before," Dr. Delos "Toby" Cosgrove, the system's president and chief executive, told employees during his annual address Wednesday.
At the same time, he described a health system that is moving forward with caution. The system last year increased its work force 6 percent to 39,250, but this year Cosgrove announced a pay freeze ...
After opening 3.3 million new square feet last year and adding 100 patient beds, the Clinic this year  will delay construction on the planned Twinsburg and Avon family health centers ...''
EDITORIAL from The Morning Journal, 12-22-08
``The new Crocker-Stearns connector from Interstate 90 in Westlake to Interstate 480 in North Olmsted ... puts Cleveland Hopkins International Airport three to five minutes closer for people in Avon and Avon Lake, and it will make it easier for baseball fans from Cuyahoga County and beyond to drive to Avon's new baseball stadium to watch the Lake Erie Crushers ...
There has been talk over the years of building a Lorain County connector from the proposed Interstate 90 exit at Nagel Road in Avon to Interstate 480 and the Ohio Turnpike in North Ridgeville, but the project is unlikely to happen because of the number of homes situated along such a route ...
The border between Lorain and Cuyahoga counties is a lucrative corridor for new development and business. Crocker-Stearns benefits both counties, and Lorain County communities, such as Avon with its ball park, should continue to promote the advantages of the connector.
NEWS ARTICLE from The Morning Journal, 12-22-08 By CHANDA NEELY cneely@MorningJournal.com
``LORAIN -- ... The new Crocker-Stearns connector extends from Interstate 90 in Westlake to Interstate 480 in North Olmsted. The $13.3 million project includes the expansion of Crocker Road-Stearns Road from Center Ridge Road to Lorain Road as well as the widening of Stearns Road from Lorain to Interstate 480.
The project is scheduled for completion in September 2009 ...
Not only will the Crocker-Stearns connector be good for travel, but Mayor Smith says it will be good for business in Avon. Smith is hoping the new route will draw in more visitors to see the Lake Erie Crushers Frontier League baseball team, which will open its season [on June 2, 2009] at the brand new ball park at Interstate 90 and SR 611.
"It will knock off a couple of minutes for people coming in to the ball park, so we'll expand our draw," Smith said. "We'll get more people in that 15 minute drive area. People coming from Parma and North Olmsted, it will take them 15 minutes; so, it will bring in more people." ...''
www.smartbrief.com/news/icsc/storyDetails.jsp?issueid=898 FAF2C-2B5D-4551-BECC-BA5EB28F7281©id=336CE98D-564A-477C-8A31- D0A27398D9DD
NEWS ARTICLE from SmartBrief, 06/05/2009
``Shopping-center industry veteran passes away
Richard E. Jacobs, a veteran of the retail real estate industry, died Friday [6-5-09] morning at the age of 83. The Jacobs Group was founded in 1955 by Jacobs and his brother, and the company eventually grew to own and manage more than 45 million square feet of retail space in the U.S. Jacobs was chairman of The Richard E. Jacobs Group at the time of his death.'' SCT Newswire (06/05)
NEWS ARTICLE from the Tampa Bay Times, 6-6-09, By Times Staff
``Richard E. Jacobs, founder of development company behind Cypress Creek Town Center in Pasco County, dies at 83
The founder of the development company behind the Cypress Creek Town Center has died. Richard E. Jacobs -- one of the pioneers of the modern shopping center industry, the chairman, chief executive officer, and owner of the Richard E. Jacobs Group, and former owner of the Cleveland Indians -- died Friday at his home in Ohio.
He was 83 and had suffered from a lengthy illness. A spokeswoman for the Cypress Creek Town Center, which has been delayed by environmental problems, said Mr. Jacobs' death won't affect plans for the shopping center at State Road 56 and Interstate 75. "One of his final strategic moves was the planning of his company's continuation after his death," a news release said.
"The Richard E. Jacobs Group will remain as a very active real estate development firm, executing the plan Mr. Jacobs personally devised to ensure future growth and success. There are currently several retail, office, and mixed-use developments in various stages of planning or construction."''
NEWS ARTICLE from The Cleveland Leader, Submitted by Roldo Bartimole on June 5, 2009 - 2:59pm.
``Death is the great equalizer. Even multi-millionaires have to participate.
Dick Jacobs ... was a tough and smart businessman. When he wanted Italian marble for Jacobs Field's loges, he got marble despite warnings they would break. They did break.
A very rich man, he once told a City Club crowd that baseball player salaries were "obscene." He was right, of course. But he neglected to mention the profits of owners. They could be even more obscene ...
I wrote "Jacobs is socialism's stellar star -- the top recipient in the county, thanks to people like Voinovich, White, Hagan, Boyle and Petro." They gave him breaks wherever they could.
Dick Jacobs once said "I believe in the quantum theory of profits to the nth power." He lived by that motto. He became a multi-millionaire by building junk as America went on its consumer binge. He built the strip malls and then regular malls. Hardly the stuff of heroes.
Ironically, this consumer trend helped to destroy American cities. But they made a lot of money for some people.
The best insight into Jacobs for me came when he had to appear before City Council in December 1989. Jacobs had to answer questions about legislation for some $120-million in tax abatements he desired. It would help subsidize his proposed Ameritrust bank building and a Hyatt hotel. He's also would get another $20 million in zero interest loans. (The project, never built, left the west side of Public Square a parking lot since.)
Council members were looking for something in return from Jacobs for all these gifts. They wanted something to be able to say, "We got a return of your money, voters." It would be a fig leaf for cover.
Jacobs was irate.
Here's the way I described the situation in the Cleveland Edition in 1989:
"Dick Jacobs -- looking much like Scrooge -- sat red faced, silent and sullen as he refused to budge from his I-can't-give-anything stance.
Council, looking for a bone to hide behind, begged for something its members could say, 'Hey, we got something, folks, for your $122-million gift to Scrooge.'"
Jacobs made clear that he wasn't happy he even had to answer questions. (He came with the mockup of the development in a black garbage bag, a sign of his disdain for the city's legislators.)
I went on:
A serious George Forbes -- who is said to have had his own private dressing down by an angry Jacobs for the messy (1989) primary campaign he ran -- tried cautiously at one point to test Jacobs for a $3-million pledge to neighborhood development projects.
"What would you say to that?" asked the Council boss of the multi-millionaire developer.
The answer shot back, sharp and rebuking. It came out in short bursts, ending in a threat. "Bye, bye, Pasadena. No way. There's no deal. It's not in the deal. It's as simple as that. The figures are here for everyone to see."
Jacobs was angry. And then the warning. A threat to walk away. "The patient is breathing heavily. Don't kill it," said Jacobs. If it were a bluff, no one called him on it ...
I remember as Jacobs left the hearing room with his black garbage bag the television cameras were outside the door waiting for Jacobs to make a comment or two. They expected him to stop and talk. Foolish people.
Jacobs rushed right by. He wasn't talking to anyone else. I tried to get in front of him to delay him, but found myself being butted against the corridor wall by his son, Jeff. He said, "Leave my father alone. He's an old man." ...
Jacobs got huge financial aid from the city, including tens of millions of dollars in tax abatements, no-interest loans and a deal -- kept secret until a lawsuit -- that gave him an inside at the Chagrin Highlands ... rich undeveloped land.
Most of this public generosity came from Mayor George Voinovich and Council President George Forbes at the city, but also from County Commissioners Tim Hagan, Mary Boyle and Jim Petro via Gateway.
Jacobs bought the Cleveland Indians in 1986 for some $40-45 million, sold it for some $320 million in 2000. He got the most out of the new stadium, mostly publicly funded. He saw the downside and got out.
He apparently lived life fully from what reports I've heard. However, he hasn't been a very charitable man ...
Over the years, I have looked at tax returns of Cleveland Indians Charities but never saw his name as a contributor. I saw Albert Belle contribute $58,000 one year; Travis Fryman, $50,000; and remember similar contributions from Ellis Burks and C. C. Sabathia, and smaller amounts contributed by many players.
Jacobs, however, revealed his need to be remembered well by the plaque he required when he sold his East 9th & Euclid property to Cuyahoga County. Another bad deal for the public.
In the sales agreement a statement on a metal plaque was required to be placed on whatever building might be constructed on the site. The exact wording was stated in the agreement. It was to say:
"In recognition of over 50 years of endeavor and achievement, the Board of Cuyahoga County Commissioners, on behalf of its citizens, gratefully acknowledges the significant contributions of Richard E. Jacobs. Mr. Jacobs has consistently and selflessly devoted his insight, skills, and resources to the development, redevelopment, and preservation of Downtown Cleveland and Cuyahoga County. This complex, which includes the historic Rotunda, symbolizes the legacy that Mr. Jacobs has established through his leadership in development and owning many of this County's major commercial, retail, and recreational facilities."
There will be no plaque outlining what Richard E. Jacobs TOOK from Cleveland and Cuyahoga County.''
NEWS ARTICLE from The Chronicle-Telegram, 9-12-09, by Steve Fogarty
``NOACA replaces weighted voting with new system
CLEVELAND -- The big kid on the block will still get more say, but not as much as he used to.
A much-discussed, controversial system of weighted voting by the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency that has long been criticized for giving Cuyahoga County too much say in what happens in less-populated member counties, including Lorain County, was replaced Friday.
The new system unanimously adopted by the NOACA Governing Board increases the number of board members from 38 to 44 while doing away with weighted voting. Under the new set-up, each NOACA board member will get one vote on any action presented during the agency's monthly meetings.
"This should eliminate a source of contention that's been vexing the agency for years," NOACA Executive Director Howard Maier said [on 9-11-09] ...
The change comes in the wake of a 2007 situation that saw Cuyahoga County's weighted voting nearly put an end to an Interstate 90 interchange project in Avon. Lorain County officials threatened to withdraw from NOACA if the voting system wasn't changed.
Lorain County saw no change in its seven voting members. Neither did Geauga County, which maintains three votes.
Lake and Medina counties each lost one weighted vote, leaving them with five and four votes, respectively.
Four of the five new voting members in Cuyahoga County are the mayors of Cleveland Heights, Euclid, Lakewood and Parma, the county's four biggest cities outside Cleveland, according to Elyria Mayor Bill Grace, who heads the NOACA Governing Board.
The fifth new voting member comes from the Cleveland-Cuyahoga County Port Authority, and the sixth will represent the Medina County engineers' office.
Under the old system, Cuyahoga County had 35 weighted votes out of a total of 56 NOACA votes ...
The 24 votes going to Cuyahoga County - out of a total of 44 - still represent a larger bloc of votes than those in the hands of NOACA's four other member counties, but Maier said the changes were an effort to link votes to population. Cuyahoga County has 1.28 million people, compared to the roughly 300,000 people in Lorain County, which represents about 15 percent of the region's roughly 2.1 million residents.
"Cuyahoga County has 61 percent of the region's population but now represents only 55 percent of the voting bloc," Grace said. 'All of the other counties will now have a slightly higher representation voting-wise than their populations would suggest."
Grace said Lorain County Commissioners Betty Blair and Ted Kalo voted to approve the changes at Friday's meeting [9-11-09]. Commissioner Lori Kokoski ...
The changes must now be ratified by the county commissioners in all five counties within 90 days.
NOACA is a board that uses federal and state funding to address transportation, air and water quality issues in Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake, Lorain and Medina counties.''
Contact Steve Fogarty at firstname.lastname@example.org.
NEWS ARTICLE from The Morning Journal, 9-12-09, By RICHARD PAYERCHIN, rpayerchin@MorningJournal.com
''NOACA unanimously changes voting structure
CLEVELAND -- Lorain County leaders praised changes to the government planning agency that distributes government money for transportation, air and water projects in Lorain, Cuyahoga, Geauga, Medina and Lake counties.
The board of the Northeast Ohio Area Coordinating Agency voted to eliminate its practice of "weighted" voting that allowed representatives from larger cities and counties to have more than one vote.
The new method will add six new board members, bringing the total to 44, who all will have one vote.
Yesterday's unanimous vote to change drew praise from Lorain County leaders, who in 2007 threatened to leave the NOACA due to the influence of Cuyahoga County leaders on a Lorain County project ...
Lorain County Commissioner Betty ... Blair and Lorain County Commissioner Ted Kalo, Lorain Mayor Anthony Krasienko, Sheffield Village Mayor John D. Hunter and New Russia Township Trustee Frank J. Pakish voted to eliminate the weighted voting. Elyria Mayor Bill Grace, who is president of the agency, brokered the arrangement among the officials from the five counties ...
In 2007, Lorain and Medina county officials became irate when Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson invoked weighted voting on a project to build a new interchange at Interstate 90 and Lear-Nagel Road in Avon. Jackson and other Cuyahoga County officials said they would use their might to vote down the project unless it contained some type of revenue sharing agreement with some Cuyahoga County communities pertaining to new development in the area.
The project passed with the revenue sharing agreement, which Lorain County officials saw as highway robbery.
With weighted votes, six Cuyahoga County officials had a total of 16 votes, while Cuyahoga County's seven suburban representatives had 13 votes, Lake County's five officials had six votes and Medina County's three representatives had four votes. In sum, the 38-member board could rack up a vote count of 56 votes.
In the new voting structure, Cuyahoga County is getting five of the new six members and Medina County adds one.
New members will come from the Cleveland-Cuyahoga Port Authority and the cities of Lakewood, Parma, Euclid and Cleveland Heights in Cuyahoga County. The Medina County engineer will take the sixth seat.
Despite the new Cuyahoga County seats, the Lorain County officials said they were happy with the compromise. Cuyahoga County will have 56 percent of the votes, but 61 percent of the total population in the five-county area, Krasienko said ...
"It was in many ways a historic meeting today," said Howard R. Maier, executive director for the planning agency ...
The NOACA board also voted 19-18 to require that its board president and vice president are also elected officeholders. Those in favor of the change said the elected officials are best for the top two spots because they are accountable to voters ...
Both changes also must be approved by county commissioners from the five counties.
Finally, the board also agreed to coordinate future efforts with the Erie County Metropolitan Planning Organization, the agency responsible for transportation and environmental planning in Erie County and part of Lorain County ...''
NEWS ARTICLE from The Morning Journal, 9-17-09, By The Morning Journal Staff, news@MorningJournal.com
[Cleveland Clinic to break ground at Nagel Road]
``AVON -- The Avon Planning Commission granted approval [9-16-09] to the Cleveland Clinic to begin grading the ground on the 40-acre site where the Clinic will build a large medical building.
Clinic representative Brian Smith asked the Commission last night for approval for the site plans so construction crews can begin grading the ground before winter. The parcel is off Just Imagine Drive, east of Nagel Road [northeast corner of Chester and Nagel] ...
Also coming to Avon is a Firestone Tire facility at the southwest corner of the intersection of SR 83 and Main Street, across from Lowe's. The business will offer full auto service ...
Also at the meeting was DeVille Developments representative Christina Eavenson. The Commission approved her company's request for an additional 1,900 square feet to be added to the end of the City Centre at SR 83 and Detroit Road ... Eavenson didn't announce a specific vendor coming into that site ...''
More Documents Relating to the June 8, 1998, Decision Against Avon
Newspaper Record of XXXXX/Jacobs in Avon