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$2m incentive fund to lure business to Health-Tech Corridor

Since 2011 the Health-Tech Corridor (HTC), the three-mile stretch in Midtown between downtown and University Circle, has been quietly building a hub for health, high-tech and research companies.
 
Today more than 160 such endeavors in biomed, technology and other industries are operating in the HTC, creating an entrepreneurial hub touting amenities such as a 100 gigabits-per-second fiber optic internet pipe – the first of its kind in the country – and access to nearby universities and medical centers.
 
Now HTC officials have partnered with JumpStart to build a $2 million fund to foster even more activity. “We’re really excited to use the fund as a carrot to attract businesses to the corridor,” says HTC director Jeff Epstein, adding that 90 percent of the 500,000 square feet of renovated office and lab space is already filled.
 
But there is plenty of room for any company looking to relocate on the HTC’s 1,600 acres. “We’ve got space for whoever wants to come,” Epstein says. “Early stage companies can get anchored here.” He also notes that Geis Companies’ developments in the area, the Beauty Shoppe co-working space and the new University Hospitals campus add to the corridor’s draw.
 
The HTC and JumpStart raised $1 million for the fund through grants from the Cleveland Foundation, the City of Cleveland and private investments, which was then matched with another $1 million by the Ohio Third Frontier.
 
Companies seeking investment from the fund must have a unique or breakthrough idea, have at least a $1 billion addressable market and exit potential. They must also demonstrate excellence in their fields.
 
Epstein says a fund awareness campaign started last month, while officials at the HTC and JumpStart have been brainstorming attraction campaigns for the past nine months. “We launched social media campaigns in high-cost markets and targeted alumni from local universities,” he explains. “We going for the low-hanging fruit first.”
 
Epstein says more than 20 companies have already expressed an interest in applying for funding. Companies that do apply must go through a full vetting process with JumpStart.
 
“We don’t just give the money away,” explains Epstein. “But companies who don’t get an investment with us will hopefully be turned on to opportunities in Cleveland. The best problem we could have is too many companies interested.”

Flashstarts move aims to create centralized innovation hub on Public Square

The Flashstarts business accelerator and venture fund recently moved from Playhouse Square to a much larger location in Terminal Tower for two basic reasons, says cofounder Charles Stack.

The first reason was to make it easier for startup companies to find stable office space. The second was to condense newbie entrepreneurial efforts into StartMart, a single, highly energetic nucleus where water cooler moments can foster new ideas and economic growth.

This concept of "engineered serendipity"  began May 16th when Flashstarts, which provides coaching, funds and other resources to new companies that participate in a 12-week program, left for its new 30,000-square-foot headquarters on Public Square, a space six times larger than its previous office.

"I've been doing this for 30 years, and I've never been more optimistic about startups having the opportunity to turn this region into a powerhouse," says Stack, who began planning StartMart with fellow Flashstarts founder Jennifer Neundorfer last spring. "This move is a small step in that direction."

Flashstarts itself will be the hub's first official tenant in the lead-up to a public launch in September. Over the summer, the accelerator will engage the community for feedback on StartMart's design and begin identifying and communicating with potential members. Though the group's focus is on use of software and technology, Stack expects a diverse range of occupants to fill the space.

"It's wide open to anyone who wants to join," he says.

Participants will work in a flexible space where privacy is an option even as collaboration is encouraged. Ultimately, StartMart will stand as a focal point for large-scale innovation.

"We want this to be a global center for startups," says Stack. "Cleveland can be a great home base (for small businesses), and we need to play up that strength."

sustainability takes center stage in neo, tackles biz bottom lines

Sustainability is gaining traction throughout the region, in public policy and everyday applications -- particularly in the world of business both big and small.
 
Just last week, the Cuyahoga County Executive's office announced that former Ohio House of Representative member Michael Foley will helm the newly created Department of Sustainability, which according to a statement will "(promote) economic development to support businesses that provide environmentally sustainable products and services; (educate) the public about environmentally sustainable practices; and (collaborate) with businesses, non-profit organizations and government agencies to develop programs incorporating environmentally sustainable methods into accepted practice."
 
Area businesses, however, are already incorporating policies to that end, which was evidenced last month during a roundtable discussion on how business is reacting to climate change. Cleveland State University's Center for Sustainable Business Practices hosted the event, which included the City of Cleveland, the small business Kalman & Pabst (K&P) and corporate giant Parker Hannifin.
 
"I think we felt like we were in very good company," says K&P co-owner Mike Wasserman, who spoke at the roundtable, noting that his 12-employee business in MidTown was a nice contrast to Parker Hannifin, which employs some 57,500 people in 50 countries. "They have a different perspective."
 
The centerpiece of K&P's sustainability practices is a 137-panel rooftop solar array, which generates between 25 and 30 percent of of the studio’s electricity. That savings, coupled with $17,000 in solar renewable energy credits the company has garnered courtesy of the array, which was installed in 2010, have resulted in a three and a half-year payback for the installation.
 
Per Wasserman, future green plans for the 18,000 square-foot commercial photography studio, with its three working kitchens, include the installation of a system that collects and reuses the property's rainwater run-off and expanding usage of LED lighting. Currently, fluorescent and LED bulbs make up more than 75 percent of K&P's lighting.
 
Wasserman is also interested in smart technology, which monitors employees' behavior and controls energy systems accordingly.
 
"I'm really interested in the technology side of things," he says, stipulating that any green improvements have to "make sense for the bottom line as well."
 
During the roundtable, Parker Hannifin's Dennis Wolcott, resource conservation and energy programs manager, cited the company's collective "resource conservation" as resulting in an overall savings of $160 million since 2004.
 
Matthew Gray of Cleveland's Office of Sustainability stated at the forum that the Midwest region emits 20 percent more greenhouse gasses per capita than the national average. Hence, efforts from huge corporations like Parker Hannifin and small local outfits such as K&P are equally important and impactful.
 
"Were always looking to do something—and it might be a little thing," says Wasserman, "but those little things compound and build into big things."

big gig grants to bring lightning speed internet to west 25th, other neo hotspots

While news of the 100-gigabit pipeline servicing the Health-Tech Corridor was widely reported, the area's fiber optic network at large continues to grow byte by byte, however quietly.
 
Thus far, OneCommunity, the nonprofit on a mission to realize a sprawling fiber optic network across Northeast Ohio, and its for-profit counterpart Everstream, have installed 2,500 miles of fiber optic cable throughout 24 counties across the region. With the announcement of four Big Gig Challenge grants last month, the organization is reaching out even further than that, to both commercial and non-profit entities.
 
The four inaugural Big Gig Challenge grantees include the West 25th Street corridor, the village of Glenwillow, Lorain County Community College (LCCC) and the City of South Euclid. OneCommunity will be matching funds in the amount of 25 percent for each respective fiber optic network installation or expansion.
 
The West 25th Street project will bring lightning speed data delivery to customers choosing to tap into the new network along a four-mile stretch servicing Ohio City, Tremont, Clark-Fulton, Brooklyn Centre and Old Brooklyn. South Euclid's project will focus on the South Green Road corridor. The Village of Glenwillow and LCCC will expand their existing fiber optic networks.
 
"A business might need water, electric and gas," says OneCommunity's chief operating officer and Everstream president Brett Lindsey. "Fiber is that fourth thing they care more about than anything else because business demands it in such a significant way. Someone will move or look at one site over another based on its proximity to a fiber network."
 
Specific plans for the projects, all of which Lindsey estimates to be in the $200,000 range, are underway and should be finalized within 60 days. Subsequent construction should take three to four months. The bulk of the projects will be aboveground installations with some underground work slated for Glenwillow.
 
"By having this ubiquitous network across the region," says Lindsey; "it really is a business attraction tool for everyone. I think that's kind of been the goal from the beginning."
 
OneCommunity has earmarked $2 million for Big Gig Grants. Lindsey hopes the four inaugural projects, which were selected from an initial pool of about 12, will ignite creativity for future grant applicants.
 
"Hopefully when we roll out our next Big Gig Challenge," he says, "we'll get 20 people filling out letters of intent and we'll give 10 awards if that's possible."
 
Considering information travels approximately one thousand times faster through a fiber optic network than through coaxial cable or a DSL phone line, those grants offer endless possibilities.
 
"It's almost limitless when you consider what people can do once they have fiber," says Lindsey. "There's really no end in sight."

healthcare startup outgrows launchhouse, expands to heights rockefeller building

Eugene Malinskiy already is on his third startup and he's not even 30 yet. He created his first company when he was 16, later selling both for a profit. Now he's launched Dragon ID, a healthcare innovation and design firm that has grown from zero to 20 employees in the span of just two years.

Dragon ID is a biomedical startup that helps doctors and hospitals solve healthcare problems. The firm focuses on the medical device, health IT and surgery markets, and has a cross-functional team of whizzes to help healthcare professionals create solutions. The Dragon ID team is working on a number of products, but one that's getting buzz is EuCliD, which will be used in transcatheter aortic valve replacements to help prevent emboli from breaking away and causing blood clots or strokes.

Recently, Dragon ID moved from Shaker Launchhouse to the Heights Rockefeller building, where it is currently customizing its own space, including a lab, to accommodate growth. Malinskiy says the firm will benefit from having more professional offices and a location that's closer to where employees live.

"The City of Cleveland Heights was very welcoming," he says, referencing financial incentives that helped seal the deal. "They really want us here."

Malinskiy attributes Dragon ID's growth to the booming healthcare sector in Cleveland, where he can do business with the Clinic and other big players. "Being here, companies can come to us and say, 'We have this idea, what can you do?'"

Typically, Malinskiy and his cohorts receive an inquiry, then spend time vetting it, including attending surgeries, to understand the scope of the problem and potential solution. Once a solution is identified, the team builds a digital or physical prototype. Then, if the client decides to move forward, the company invests in bringing the product market through animal and human trials.

Dragon ID is internally funded through contracts with hospitals and doctors. The company has also won grant awards from MAGNET and the Innovation Fund.

150k-sq-ft victory center nears completion in health-tech corridor

Core and shell renovations of the 150,000-square-foot Victory Center, a $26 million project located along the Health-Tech Corridor, are almost complete. Tenant build-outs will follow, and although none have signed leases yet, developer Scott Garson says that will change as his team finishes the common spaces and shows the property to more prospective tenants.

"Everybody thinks it's wonderful, great… The trick is getting the first one in," he says. "I have enough letters of intent out there that I'm confident it's only a matter of time."

Garson says the demand is there for flexible, ready-to-grow office space geared towards biomedical, research and technology companies, which is why he decided to undertake the project. He points out that nearby buildings owned by Geis Companies and Cumberland Development are almost completely full.

So far, Garson has completed the project without a bank loan, using partner equity and a $720,000 loan from the city, $2.5 million in tax increment financing, federal and state historic tax credits, and a $1 million State of Ohio job ready sites grant. Garson expects to secure bank financing in the near future for tenant build-outs.

The building's unique features include a new interior with a historic waffle slab ceiling, window wells that allow plenty of natural light, copious backup power, fiber-optic connectivity, and the right mechanicals in place for laboratory space. The building will be certified LEED Silver, saving tenants 20 percent on utility costs. Finally, it has views of downtown, free parking and HealthLine access.

"We went through a recycling program with the materials and our landscaping uses stormwater management strategies," says Michael Augoustidis of Domukur Architects, the firm that designed the project. "It's very energy-efficient."

Although he's not ready to declare victory yet, Gardon says the historic building, which was built in 1917 as the Arts Center, is nearing the goal line and ready to score.


Source: Scott Garson
Writer: Lee Chilcote

shaker heights renovates two blighted homes near launchhouse to create 'tech village'

Building off the buzz created by Shaker LaunchHouse, an entrepreneurial incubator, the City of Shaker Heights has partnered with LaunchHouse, Cuyahoga County and Neighborhood Housing Services of Greater Cleveland to renovate two homes on Chelton Road into affordable housing for entrepreneurs.

The homes at 3553 and 3599 Chelton Road, directly behind Shaker Launchhouse in the South Moreland neighborhood, were vacant before the city acquired them. Shaker renovated the homes using $250,000 of Neighborhood Stabilization Funds, and is now in the process of transferring the properties to Neighborhood Housing Services. The agency, which specializes in affordable housing, will own and manage them.

The houses feature a total of nine "units" (a bedroom in a shared house with ample common space) that can be rented for $395 apiece. Amenities include high-speed Internet, free utilities, a comfortable green home with air conditioning, hardwood floors, free laundry and a ceiling projector hook-up in the living room for presentations. The homes are part of a multi-million dollar investment the city has made in the South Moreland community.

"We already have more applicants than we have units," reports Kamla Lewis, Director of Neighborhood Revitalization with the City of Shaker Heights. "We wanted to create a concentrated, collaborative community -- an environment for startups in the neighborhood, but a place where they could afford to live, as well."

Lewis says the first tenants will move into the completed homes as early as this week, and she expects all nine units to be fully occupied by June 1.

Applicants must be entrepreneurs at Shaker LaunchHouse. Its accelerator program begins this summer and has attracted entrepreneurs from outside of Northeast Ohio, who move here while engaged in starting their companies.

Lewis says the project is the first of its kind that she is aware of, and that the city's investment in South Moreland has already attracted further private investment, including several new businesses and a new $5 million apartment complex.


Source: Kamla Lewis
Writer: Lee Chilcote

tenant buildout weeks away, global health innovation center gets ready for closeup

On March 31st, Cuyahoga County will turn over the Global Health Innovation Center -- formerly known as the Medical Mart -- to its individual tenants so they can begin to build out each of their spaces. 

It will be a landmark moment for the project, says Dave Johnson, Director of Public Relations and Marketing for the GHIC. He expects the project to be majority leased when the ribbon is cut in June.

"The project will open ahead of schedule and under budget," says Johnson, who also cites the building's LEED Silver (Leadership in Energy Efficiency and Design) status, a sought-after sustainable building rating.

GHIC tenants include a partnership between the Cleveland Clinic and GE Healthcare, a partnership between University Hospitals and Phillips Healthcare, Johnson Controls, and the Health Information Management Society.

The GHIC will include a display of the "home of the future," which will be built out by vendors and will feature medical devices that allow people to stay in their homes. UH and Phillips will showcase scanning equipment, while Johnson Controls will display the latest in hospital operating systems. Visitors will be able to view the behind-the-wall systems that would otherwise be invisible.

The Health Information Management Society will rotate exhibits based on what's hot in healthcare management. "It will be like a pretend hospital," says Johnson. "This is the organization around healthcare IT. The display will show equipment and how it interfaces. This is an entity bumped from the cancelled Nashville Med Mart project. It will become a magnet for companies to test IT equipment."

Officials are planning a public grand opening in June with a weekend of festivities.


Source: Dave Johnson
Writer: Lee Chilcote

new organization aims to leverage area's expertise in water technology

The health of Lake Erie has come a long way in the past 40 years, and it is now considered by many to be a case study of a recovering ecosystem. Yet not very many people know that, in part as a result of cleaning up our water pollution as well as our close proximity to a Great Lake, Northeast Ohio companies have developed rich expertise in water technology.

To leverage this cluster, influence policy, and conduct research and education, a group of organizations have launched The Alliance for our Water Future, a new nonprofit organization that seeks to spur innovative solutions to freshwater issues locally and globally.

"Silicon Valley is an example of what one industry cluster can do for a region," says Byron Clayton, Vice President at NorTech. "Companies all worked together in that region to leverage their strengths. In Northeast Ohio, we have a great legacy in cleaning up industrial waste water. We identified areas where we have the best chance of competing, and that's been the focus of our water technology cluster."

The areas that NorTech identified are automation and controls (identifying the best, most efficient way to control water), absorbents (extracting contaminants from water) and corrosion resistance (preventing water systems from corroding).

NorTech's role is to identify, organize and accelerate clusters. The Alliance will help promote this success story and spur cross-sector collaboration. By working together, the groups involved in the Alliance hope to make a global impact.

"This is about the economic future of our region," says Fran DiDonato, Program Manager of the Alliance. "If we can show that we had success with cleaning water, then that gives us credibility when we export our solutions to other places."

Two Northeast Ohio companies, MAR Systems and ABSMaterials, were recently selected by the Artemis Project as 2012 Top 50 Water Companies. Rockwell Automation is also considered a major player in the water technology field.

The founding members of the Alliance are NorTech, Case Western Reserve University, Port of Cleveland, Cleveland Metroparks, Cleveland State University, Hiram College, Great Lakes Science Center, Kent State University, MAR Systems and Northeast Ohio Regional Sewer District.


Source: Byron Clayton, Fran DiDonato
Writer: Lee Chilcote

on opening day, indians harness wind power to fuel ballpark operations

When Cleveland Indians fans catch their first game at Progressive Field this season, they'll be able to check out not only the power hitters in the batting lineup, but also a giant, new wind turbine that harnesses wind power to fuel the ballpark's operations.

The recently constructed turbine, which is the latest in the team's efforts to green-up its ballpark operations, was designed by Cleveland State University engineering professor Majid Rashidi. It weighs 10 tons and generates 40,000 kilowatt hours per year, which is enough to power about 2.5 households. Progressive Field uses about 17 million kilowatt hours per year.

"As our fans know, it's very windy at the ballpark. We've always wanted to do a turbine, but the technology just wasn't there," says Brad Mohr, Assistant Director of Ballpark Operations. "I gave a talk to the Corporate Sustainability Network organized by CSU in 2008, and that's when I got connected to Dr. Rashidi."

Rashidi had designed a vented wind turbine design, which fits into a more compact space than a traditional turbine and pivots with the wind. "It works in cities where there's turbulent wind," explains Mohr. "Much like a rock in a river, it pushes the air molecules at a faster speed through the turbine and generates power."

Mohr, who says he is proud that this is an all-Cleveland project, is working on efforts to educate fans. The Indians will install an interpretive area in the ballpark where people can learn about the park's sustainability efforts, which include solar arrays, energy reduction initiatives, recycling and food composting.

"Without a doubt, teams are looking hard at sustainability," says Mohr. "Through the Green Sports Alliance, we're sharing what's next with each other. For the Indians to influence others in the industry, that makes us very proud."


Source: Brad Mohr
Writer: Lee Chilcote
Photo: Bob Perkoski

city holds public meeting to respond to concerns about waste to energy plant

In response to residents' concerns about the City of Cleveland's proposed waste-to-energy plant, Cleveland Public Power (CPP) plans to hold a public meeting this Thursday, Jan. 19th at 6 p.m. at Estabrook Recreation Center at 4125 Fulton Road.

CPP and City officials have stated that the Cleveland Recycling and Energy Generation (CREG) Center will help to transform Cleveland's economy by reducing waste, increasing recycling and creating over 100 jobs. Backers also claim that the plant, which will turn trash into synthetic gas that will be used to create power, represents an advanced green technology that is safe and clean.

The statewide environmental group Ohio Citizen Action, which has joined with other environmental and resident groups to oppose the plant, argues that the city should scrap its misguided efforts in favor of more ambitious, citywide recycling programs. Given the checkered history of waste-to-energy facilities in the U.S., the group says that Cleveland should learn lessons from other cities and set more progressive recycling goals that could ultimately drive job creation.

"The history of attempts at gasification are abysmal; it's expensive and polluting," says Sandy Buchanan, Director of Ohio Citizen Action. "This isn't the first time people have gotten fascinated by a technology they think is going to be a miracle."

The real question, says Buchanan, is why the city's recycling goals are so low and what it can do to raise them. "The city's goal is zero waste, but it says that the waste-to-energy facility will recycle only 25 percent of waste," she says. "Other cities get up to 50-60 percent, and the national average is 34 percent."

The city could ramp up its recycling efforts by studying other cities, she says. Options include adding compost recycling, expanding the existing program to additional neighborhoods, better educating residents to spur participation and creating new businesses that turn waste into revenue. "For a city that is really trying to make its mark with sustainability, this seems made to order."

Ron Owens, Commissioner of the Division of Waste Collection with the City of Cleveland, disputed Buchanan's claims. "Whereas we had originally planned on taking 3-4 years to roll out our automated curbside recycling program, the CREG Center will allow us to roll it out within a one-year time frame," he says.

The city's automated, waste and recycling program is slated to be rolled out to just under 50 percent of households by this summer. CREG proponents claim that the waste-to-energy plant is a crucial aspect of expanding the city's recycling program, because it creates a viable revenue stream for such efforts.


Source: Sandy Buchanan, Ron Owens, Cleveland Public Power
Writer: Lee Chilcote

city's proposed waste-to-energy plant draws strident resident opposition

A public hearing by the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on the City of Cleveland's permit application for a proposed waste-to-energy plant drew a large crowd to Estabrook Recreation Center on Monday night. Despite the city's promises that the new plant will effectively turn trash into treasure -- in the form of synthetic gas that can be used to create electricity -- many attendees said that environmental concerns and scant communication have left them with a long list of concerns.

"Why have there been a lack of community meetings around this issue?" asked Jeff Ramsey, Executive Director of the Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization, citing only two community meetings held last year. "I don't consider a two-week comment period to be community engagement."

Other attendees expressed concerns about the plant's technology, which is relatively new and has not yet been used in the U.S. "Gasification has been touted as a clean technology, but it is not," said Stuart Greenberg, Executive Director of the nonprofit Environmental Health Watch. "If the City of Cleveland is the first to try this untested technology, then shouldn't there be more controls on it?"

Ward 14 City Councilman Brian Cummins stated his objections based upon concerns about pollution affecting low-income and minority constituents. "Pollution has affected our community for over 150 years," he said. "We want to move forward, not backward, and we're concerned about lead and mercury."

The City of Cleveland has stated that the Cleveland Recycling and Energy Generation (CREG) Center will create up to 100 new jobs, reduce the city's costs of hauling waste to out-of-county landfills, facilitate citywide recycling efforts, reduce environmental pollution and provide a safe, greener method of creating energy. The city also deems the CREG Center as a means of reaching its sustainability goals and Advanced Energy Portfolio Standard goal.

Following the hearing and comment period, the Ohio EPA will rule on the city's application for a permit. The city has not yet said how it plans to finance the gasification plant, which is expected to cost as much as $200 million.


Source: Jeff Ramsey, Brian Cummins, Stuart Greenberg
Writer: Lee Chilcote

statewide tour shows off growing power of green energy

The ninth annual Green Energy Ohio Tour, held last weekend at 260 businesses and homes across the state, featured more than 160 solar, wind and green energy projects in Northeast Ohio. Yet while education was the tour's primary goal, it also communicated a critical, attention-grabbing memo to policymakers: This fast-growing industry is driving development and job creation in Ohio.

"With some of our legislators currently doubting the value of renewable energy, our tour sent a very strong message," says Bill Spratley, Executive Director of Green Energy Ohio. "The green energy industry is about creating jobs, and that seems to be one thing that resonates with this administration."

The renewable energy, energy efficiency and green design projects on the tour created or retained more than 2,000 jobs, according to the Ohio Energy Resources Division. In the first quarter of 2011, Ohio was also ranked number two among U.S. states in solar panel and wind turbine parts production.

Spratley says that large projects such as Lincoln Electric's wind turbine, as well as the growing number of homes and commercial businesses using solar panels to slash their energy bills, reveal an industry that's finally gaining traction.

"People now understand green energy, and they're going from 'curious' to 'serious,'" says Spratley. "We see people taking notes, particularly at solar homes, and then a year or two later I'll see them with their own solar homes."

Spratley added that Cleveland has "really stepped up" since the American Solar Energy Society brought its national conference -- and 5,000 people -- here in 2006. "People were very impressed with the enthusiasm in Cleveland," he says. "Now we have solar panels on Progressive Field, the Great Lakes Science Center, the Cleveland Musem of Art and many other locations."

Among the many Northeast Ohio projects featured on the 2011 tour were the Lincoln Electric wind turbine, Rockefeller Park Solar Demonstration, PNC SmartHome and Joseph McCullough Building at the Cleveland Institute of Art.


Source: Bill Spratley
Writer: Lee Chilcote

sustainable cleveland 2019 to have physical presence in tower city center

Sustainable Cleveland 2019 (SC 2019), an effort by the City of Cleveland and local environmental groups to promote sustainability as a means of growing the economy in Northeast Ohio, will soon have a physical home in Tower City Center.

Andrew Watterson, Cleveland's Chief of Sustainability, says the purpose of the new Sustainable Cleveland Center is to promote efforts to green Northeast Ohio, provide central meeting space for environmental groups, and offer affordable shared office space for companies and nonprofits working to advance sustainability within the region.

"We're increasing our audience by putting the Mayor's Office of Sustainability into a more public space," says Watterson. "Forest City has been extremely generous by donating the space, and we've signed a two-year lease."

The Office of Sustainability will set up shop on the second floor of a two-story retail space that is accessible from the Huron Road entrance to Tower City Center. A number of regional companies, including GE Lighting, Alcoa and Eaton Corporation, have donated materials for the build-out.

Watterson stresses that the Sustainable Cleveland Center is a "collaborative effort" that will ultimately house many partners. The nonprofit Entrepreneurs for Sustainability (E4S) has indicated an intent to lease space on the first floor, but has not yet signed a lease. A range of other companies and organizations have indicated a desire to showcase products, information and materials.

Watterson hopes the center will eventually lead to the creation of a sustainable business incubator in downtown Cleveland. "We're testing the idea out at a scale that's manageable," he says. "In the meantime, it provides us with an excellent way to tell the story of what's happening with sustainability in Cleveland."


Source: Andrew Watterson
Writer: Lee Chilcote













midtown leaders say health tech corridor is gaining momentum

When construction finally wrapped up in 2008 on the Euclid Corridor, civic leaders felt triumphant. The $200 million project to redevelop crumbling Euclid Avenue -- once dubbed "Millionaire's Row" for its opulent, turn-of-the-century mansions -- would spur economic development and connect downtown with University Circle, they believed.

Then the global recession hit. Banks stopped lending, businesses halted expansion plans and the nation slid into a great recession. The once-tangible vision of attracting health care and tech companies to the sparkling boulevard seemed like the stuff of dreams.

Yet at MidTown Cleveland's recent annual meeting, civic leaders touted recent developments showing the vaunted Health Tech Corridor is gradually becoming a reality. The Euclid Corridor has created "a globally competitive environment to attract and grow biomedical, health care and medical supply chain businesses in Midtown and beyond," MidTown's annual report stated.

Recent accomplishments include breaking ground on the Midtown Tech Park at Euclid and East 69th, with the help of a $3.5 million Jobs Ready Sites grant; earning a designation as an Ohio "Hub of Innovation and Opportunity" along with $250,000 in funding to implement an action plan for the Health Tech Corridor; seeing the expansion of longstanding businesses such as Pierre's Ice Cream; and spurring the addition of new businesses like Ziska Architects, which relocated from Solon to the historic Gifford House at 3047 Prospect Avenue.

MidTown Cleveland says it's no surprise that businesses are investing here, given the neighborhood's proximity to downtown Cleveland, University Circle and the Cleveland Clinic. Other reasons behind the growth of the area include access to talent and research at nearby institutions and opportunities to collaborate with world-class health care and academic institutions in technology development.


Source: MidTown Cleveland, Inc.
Writer: Lee Chilcote




17 Emerging Technologies Articles | Page: | Show All
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