With the construction of the Ohio and Erie Canal, connecting Lake Erie at Cleveland with the Ohio River at Portsmouth in the early 1800’s, the City of Cleveland became an important northern port city for the movement, manufacturing and distribution of goods throughout the Midwest. The primacy of the early transportation network of interstate canals and river/lake shipping would be short-lived, but its affect on the trajectory for growth of Great Lakes cities like Cleveland would be enduring. By the mid-1800’s, interurban commuter rail service and intercity industrial and passenger rail increased in the City establishing rail shipping and travel as the primary mode of transportation within and throughout Northeast Ohio. Cleveland remained an important rail hub until after World War II when transportation for most industrial shipping and personal travel shifted from the nation’s rail lines to the growing interstate highway system.
Recently, rising fuel costs and considerable interest in sustainable transportation has led to substantial federal commitment to upgrading America’s rail system for the twenty-first century. This investment by the federal government has spurred a number of proposals for passenger rail service across the country. In the State of Ohio, the Ohio Hub plan re-establishes Cleveland as an important rail hub in Ohio, for travel throughout the Midwest and to cities on the East Coast. By utilizing rail to strengthen connectivity, these new multi-modal transportation networks – and the facilities that serve them – will help reinforce the social and economic sustainability of the American City.
Project 2009: Lakefront Station challenges entrants to propose designs for a Multi-Modal Transportation Center in Downtown Cleveland at the north end of the historic Mall. This new transportation center will provide the city with a state-of-the-art rail station ready to support high speed passenger rail service, a facility capable of integrating and balancing the needs of various transportation modes, and a pedestrian connector from the Mall to Cleveland’s lakefront. Linked into a High Speed Passenger Rail network, Downtown Cleveland will be an important national rail center among a network of connected American cities, a fitting gateway to the City of Cleveland.
Prizes for the 2009 Cleveland Design Competition are as follows:
First Place: $5,000.000 USD
Second Place: $2,000.00 USD
Third Place: $1,000.00 USD
For more information regarding the 2009 Cleveland Design Competition, please refer to the website: http://www.clevelandcompetition.com. The Jury will be announced on October 23, 2009.
This year’s competiton partners and platinum sponsors include: The Lincoln Institute of Land Policy, the Cleveland Mall Plaza Beautification Fund, Kent State University’s Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative, the Ohio Chapter American Society of Landscape Architects, FORUM Architectural Services, Westlake Reed Leskosky, and Cleveland Public Art.