Warm Days of Summer
There have been a lot of good things going on in the neighborhood this last month. The MetroParks Concert Series in partnership with the City has been an overwhelming success with great weather and tremendous outpouring of support from the community. The Friday night that the Kinsman Dazz Band played there were over 2,500 concert goers who came to the park, at which time MetroParks personnel stopped counting. So, it goes without saying – “thank you” to Cleveland MetroParks and all those who have come to support the concerts at Euclid Beach. There are two concerts left with the last of the Friday Night Concerts on August 11. The music starts at 6:00 PM. See you there.
Don’t forget about the Thursday Night Concert series rotating between the Coronado Beach, Beachland Park Association and East Shore Park Club. This series has been a growing success each year and runs through the month of August. My sincere appreciation to all three clubs for supporting music “along the lakefront” as part of our summertime concert series in the Ward 8 community.
My congratulations to the East 169 Street Block Club for hosting a very successful picnic at their First Annual Block Party in their brand new pocket park on East 169 Street. It was great to see neighbors caring for one another and taking care of their street. I wish them the best of luck on their future endeavors.
As I reported in my last neighborhood update, dealing with high grass and weeds at abandoned homes and vacant lots is still a major ongoing challenge this summer. It is hard to believe the sheer number of abandoned properties that the city has had to become caretaker for - and, that is just for basic grass cutting. The long term answer is for the Cuyahoga County Fiscal Office to streamline the process for foreclosure action and ultimate Sheriff Sale to rid our neighborhoods of these abandoned derelict properties. Just think that since January 2014, in Ward 8 alone, we have taken down over 218 condemned structures. Virtually, each one of those locations is now an empty lot that has to be maintained by the City, and I can assure you that there is more in the pipeline to be demolished as of this writing.
Work has begun in earnest on the construction of the new Oliver Hazard Perry Elementary School between Harland and Schenely off East 185th Street. It is great to see a new school rising in our community. My thanks to all involved in the process. On Tuesday, July 18, in partnership with the Collinwood Health Center (NEON), the Cuyahoga County LandBank and my office dedicated the new Veterans with families housing complex at the historic Collinwood row houses located at 15300 St Clair Avenue at Nye Road. This is the first housing complex constructed specifically for Veterans with families on the northeast side. We hope it is not the last, and we look forward to working with our partners to provide affordable and safe housing for those who have served in our country’s armed forces and now who need our help with housing and medical care.
As you are all aware we are in an election year. Please watch for upcoming Mayoral Candidate speaking engagements on the Northeast side as we work our way towards the September 12th Mayoral Primary and the General Election on November 7th, which will include not only the Mayoral election but City Council (for Wards 8 and 10) and Judicial races as well. It is also anticipated that there will be other issues on the ballot. Watch for upcoming election announcements.
My sincere appreciation to all of the neighborhood groups and individuals who have taken a proactive role on their streets and in the neighborhood regarding public safety and law enforcement. The 5th District has been involved in some major and ongoing investigations which have led to several highly publicized criminal arrests and indictments. I cannot go into great detail due to ongoing issues surrounding these investigations; however, one thing is clear, that the bulk of information that led to the arrests in these criminal activities including those in our own ward came directly to the 5th District or through my office from observant and concerned neighbors. As I have said before – I like nosey neighbors and folks who are not afraid of standing up and being counted. Show me the safest streets and the best neighborhoods and I will show you neighbors who are looking out for one another and sending a clear message on their street; that they will not tolerate criminal activity or bad behavior. Let’s continue to send that message throughout this summer and beyond.
Looking forward to seeing you in the community. As always I can be reached at my office at (216) 664-4236 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Michael D. Polensek
Councilman, Ward 8