A screenshot of Trudy Andrzejewski (left) explaining the redevelopment plans for Empire and Nathaniel Hawthorne Schools at the May 8, 2023 Cleveland City Council Finance, Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Committee meeting.
Trudy Andrzejewski (left) explains the redevelopment plans for Empire and Nathaniel Hawthorne Schools. Credit: Cleveland City Council YouTube

Covered by Documenters Carolyn Cooper and Nicholas Ventura

School redevelopment: The city is set to transfer two vacant Cleveland schools to developers for renovation. The developers will pay up to $110,000 total for the two properties. Some Cleveland Metropolitan School District (CMSD) properties have been vacant for more than 10 years, said city official Trudy Andrzejewski. The two projects–Empire School in Ward 9 and Nathaniel Hawthorne School in Ward 16–will include new housing. The Empire School redevelopment will include affordable housing for seniors.

Abandoned properties: Cleveland City Council Member Kevin Conwell said residents often call him about vacant CMSD schools because of issues with debris and vandalism. Council Member Mike Polensek said he also hears about CMSD neglecting its vacant properties. He had to obtain city landmark status for the Henry W. Longfellow Elementary School to ensure its maintenance. The school has since been converted into a senior living facility.

And also: The committee advanced legislation that will provide free legal help to people facing eviction. The proposal allows the city to give $500,000 to United Way for that work. Despite concerns from Polensek that this would have unintended impacts on landlords, City Council passed the ordinance later that evening.

Read the Twitter thread by Documenter Nicholas Ventura:

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More on Cleveland’s vacant properties:

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