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Cleveland Dedicates Shaker Heights Station; Station Is Key Part of Area TOD

Officials from Shaker Heights and the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) recently opened the new $5.4 million Lee-Van Aken Station, just steps away from City Hall and the library and one of the busiest stations on the agency’s Blue Line.

The station stayed open for much of the 18-month construction period. It began opening in phases in early October.

The station is a central component of a plan to enhance vibrancy of the area through the historical connection to public transit. It builds on the area’s strengths, including proximity to municipal offices, retail and new residential construction.

“This project demonstrates what can happen when RTA partners with municipalities, civic organizations and private entities, all working together toward a common goal,” said APTA Chair Valarie J. McCall, RTA board member and chief of government and international affairs for the city of Cleveland.

“In 2008, RTA and the city of Shaker Heights agreed on an innovative Shaker Heights Lee-Van Aken TOD plan. Today, we are seeing the results,” she added.

Joe Calabrese, RTA chief executive officer and general manager, said, “This new station and the redevelopment of this entire neighborhood speak to the success of transit-oriented development and what it means to a region. Public transit is connecting the dots once again and spurring economic development that would not be realized otherwise.”

The new ADA-compliant station improves the visibility of public transit and provides improved amenities for passengers. It features new loading platforms and improved access, provides weather-protected vestibules at both entrances, extends the existing road bridge to provide a larger sidewalk area and provides greater security.
Federal funds covered about 80 percent of the work.

Cutting the ribbon at the Lee-Van Aken Station are, from left, APTA Chair and GCRTA board member Valarie J. McCall, Shaker Heights Mayor Earl Leikin, emcee and GCRTA board member Georgine Welo, mayor of South Euclid, and RTA CEO Joe Calabrese.

Photo by Jerome Masek, GCRTA

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