You are browsing the archive for 2013 March.

Learn: What is the cost to live here and get there?

March 28, 2013 in Housing, News, Transportation

As two of the most significant expenses in our personal lives, housing and transportation cost can play a key role in our quality of life and where we choose to live.  Over the last few years a new tool has been developed by the Center for Neighborhood Technology to analyze some of these costs relative to income and geography.

To integrate this way of thinking into the choices and decisions made by home buyers, renters, urban and transportation planners, and developers, CNT and our collaborative partner, the Center for Transit Oriented Development (CTOD), developed a groundbreaking tool, the Housing + Transportation Affordability Index, that measures the true affordability of housing choice-by factoring in both housing and transportation costs in a neighborhood.

The cost of getting around takes a significant bite out of household budgets. The average family in the United States spends about 18% of after-tax income on transportation, but this varies significantly by income and geography. The H+T Index establishes an affordability standard for transportation costs of 15% of household income.

The H+T Index offers an expanded view of affordability that combines housing and transportation costs and sets the benchmark for housing and transportation affordability at no more than 45% of household income. By this measure, the number of affordable neighborhoods in the United States drops to 28%.

A regional view of H + T Costs can be found on the Conditions and Trends platform. You can use the index on-line to compare different geographies in Northeast Ohio as well as other parts of the country.

Drink Local: Drink Tap

March 27, 2013 in ACT, Sustainability

In honor of World Water day last week, here is a Cleveland-based non-profit focusing access to clean and fresh water in Northeast Ohio and around the globe.

From the Drink Local.Drink Tap website:

The Drink Local. Drink Tap.(TM), Inc. focus is to reconnect people with local water in tangible activities. These activities include educational events, beach cleanups, World Water Day celebrations, public speaking, art and film making. A collective change in the understanding of the ACCESS to clean, fresh water and compassion towards others can be fostered through educating individuals within the United States, especially in Northeast Ohio. Issues surrounding the access of fresh water are taught through local activities and global projects (Making Waves from Cleveland to Uganda). Individual water re-connection occurs through our Wavemaker Program.

 

Our History:

Drink Local. Drink Tap.(TM), Inc. is a not for profit enterprise.  DLDT began at the Cleveland Sustainability Summit in 2009 as a volunteer group and has quickly grown into its own enterprise.  Volunteer team members have dedicated countless hours to cleaning up beaches, raising awareness through volunteer activities, and developing a plans to bring clean drinking water to a schools in East Aftica. We work with schools and communities locally to reconnect to our water wealth becoming water stewards and share with others in need.

 

Learn more about becoming a wavemaker at:

http://drinklocaldrinktap.org/wavemaker-program/

 

Read more about Making Waves from Cleveland to Uganda at:

http://drinklocaldrinktap.org/making-waves-from-cleveland-to-uganda-project/

Interested in looking at how we currently are using land in Northeast Ohio?

March 26, 2013 in Planning and Zoning, Tool

As part of the Vibrant NEO 2040 initiative, NEOSCC has completed the first-ever existing land use map for the 12-county region. This parcel-based map was built on detailed real estate information provided by the region’s 12 County Auditors and County Fiscal Officers. This map can be scaled to the size of individual communities and counties and can be filtered to show in clear detail the location specific land uses, such as industrial, commercial and park land.  Because it is based on current real estate data, this map provides a real-time picture of vacant urbanized land throughout the region.

Zoning Map

NEOSCC has also created a parcel-based zoning map for the 12-county Northeast Ohio region from the most current information supplied by each of the 393 jurisdictions in the region. This map can be scaled to the size of individual communities and counties and can be filtered to show in clear detail the location of specific zoning classifications, such as residential, industrial, commercial, and agriculture.  The GIS data behind the maps is included by county and each file contains the local zoning, local land use, NEOSCC zoning and NEOSCC land use codes.

To download pdf’s of these two maps visit our Tools and Resources page.

Fair Housing Forums – Presentations Now Available

March 25, 2013 in Engagement, Housing

The NEOSCC is currently undertaking a study to evaluate fair housing throughout the 12 Counties of Northeast Ohio.  It is known as a Regional Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing Choice. In early March 2013, through a series of Fair Housing Forums, we reached out to each of the 12 Counties to present preliminary data and listen to your thoughts on this important issue.

The documents below represent the data from the presentations given in each County during the week of March 11 through 15.

Please continue to provide your feedback through our Fair Housing Surveys or by emailing comments to info@neoscc.org.

Presentations by County

Ashtabula County FHF

Cuyahoga County FHF

Geauga County FHF

Lake County FHF

Lorain County FHF

Mahoning County FHF

Medina County FHF

Portage County FHF

Summit County FHF

Stark County FHF

Trumbull County FHF

Wayne County FHF

REGISTRATION OPEN! Vibrant NEO Workshops

March 22, 2013 in ACT, Engagement, Scenario Planning

CLICK ON THE LINKS BELOW TO REGISTER: This first round of VibrantNEO public workshops revolves around a scenario called “Business‐As‐Usual.” It outlines what Northeast Ohio’s future will look like if we keep doing what we are currently doing. We need your help to define what we value and what’s most important to this region as we start to create a vision for Northeast Ohio’s future. We Can Only Answer These Questions Together!

Pick a date and location that’s most convenient for you and Join Us!
All events begin with an open house and registration from 5:30 – 6:30 PM. Workshops take place from 6:30 – 8:30 PM.

CLICK ON THE LINKS BELOW TO REGISTER

CLICK ON THE LINKS BELOW TO REGISTER

Tues., April 30:
Lorain, Medina, and western Cuyahoga counties
The Oberlin Inn
7 N Main St
Oberlin OH 44074
Register:  http://tinyurl.com/VibrantNEO-Oberlin-043013

Tues., April 30:
Mahoning, Trumbell and Ashtabula counties
John F. Kennedy High School
2550 Central Parkway Avenue SE
Warren, Ohio 44484
Register: http://tinyurl.com/VibrantNEO-Warren-043013

Weds., May 1:
Central Cuyahoga county and inner-ring suburbs
Third Federal Savings & Loan (auditorium)
7007 Broadway Ave.
Cleveland OH 44105
Register: http://tinyurl.com/VibrantNEO-Cleveland-050113

Weds., May 1
Wayne and Stark counties
The Metropolitan Centre
601 Cleveland Ave., NW
Canton OH 44702
Register: http://tinyurl.com/VibrantNEO-Canton-050113

Thurs., May 2:
Summit and Portage counties
Akron Urban League
440 Vernon Odom Blvd.
Akron OH 44307
Register: http://tinyurl.com/VibrantNEO-Akron-050213

Thurs., May 2: 
Lake, eastern Cuyahoga, and Geauga counties
Cuyahoga Community College – Corporate College East
4400 Richmond Rd.
Warrensville Heights OH 44128
Register:http://tinyurl.com/VibrantNEO-WH-050213

City of Elyria Fair Housing Board sponsoring Fair Housing Conference on April 4

March 21, 2013 in Communications, Engagement, Housing, News

Speakers include:

Marija Georgievski, Executive Director, Lake Erie Landlord Association (Landlord Best Practices)

Dennis Muzilla, Manager, First Federal Savings & Loan of Lorain (Compliance with Fair Lending Practices)

Mindy Wright, Housing Manager, Lorain County Urban League (Foreclosure Counseling 101)

Emily C. White, Attorney, Legal Aid Society of Cleveland (Rent to Own:  Beware of Scams)

Share: What makes Northeast Ohio Vibrant?

March 20, 2013 in Engagement, News

Lakewood Beach

The story of the Northeast Ohio region begins with you. What makes Northeast Ohio special for you? What would you change if you could? MyVibrantNEO is an opportunity for local residents to share their experiences with NEOSCC and the broader region. Submissions can be in many formats, including photos, videos, essays, songs, poems, and more!
Northeast Ohio is your region, and it’s important for you to share why you love it and what you would improve. Using your input, we can gain further understanding of what we can do to encourage a more vibrant and sustainable future for Northeast Ohio. We would love for you to be involved in this ongoing conversation!

 

NEOSCC has already received some submissions, but it’s not too late to let your voice be heard! Some of the submissions thus far include photos of locals enjoying the Mahoning Riverfest, the sunset at Lakewood Park, and locals enjoying a canoe excursion at the Trumbull Canoe Trails Club Picnic. Submissions will be displayed on NEOSCC’s website, and the best submissions will become a part of NEOSCC’s ongoing engagement campaign! And, of course, you will be credited whenever your submission is used.

To view the submission gallery or upload your entry click here.

Share your piece of Northeast Ohio with NEOSCC, and tell the region what you love about your community!

What Can I Do Today?

Thriving Communities Institute: From Vacancy to Vitality

March 19, 2013 in ACT, Conditions and Trends, economic development, Housing, News, Toolkiit

In 2011, the Western Reserve Land Conservancy launched an effort to combat the devastating impact of abandonment and disinvestment on Northeast Ohio’s core cities. Entitled the “Thriving Communities Institute,” the initiative targeted the reduction of vacant residential properties, primarily through demolition. These properties, according to Institute Director Jim Rokakis, reduce property values in our neighborhoods. Studies show that one vacant property on a street will significantlyreduce the value of adjacent homes. Soon, due to loss of value, foreclosures and “bank walk-aways,” the nearby homes become vacant as the disease spreads. Soon the entire neighborhood is dead and diseased, having been destroyed by this contagious and toxic process. Then the adjacent areas are infected and the disease spreads further … predictably, relentlessly, and with devastating consequences.

The impact of disinvestment in the urban core also has negative implications for the region’s natural environment. Depressed urban markets drive potential residents further away from the center and into suburban and exurban communities. The demand for housing and retail services away from the core increases development pressure on previously undeveloped open spaces and agricultural lands. The abandoned housing left behind prevents reuse of urban properties for urban gardens, parks, and greenways. Residential vacancies cause unnecessary consumption of “greenfield” land for development while prohibiting the repurposing of unoccupied land for environmental remediation; it is a two-edged sword.

According to Director Jim Rokakis, Thriving Communities Institute is already lending its hand to transform vacant and unproductive properties into new opportunities to attract economic growth, to bring green space to the region’s cities, and to support safe, beautiful neighborhoods. In working with community leaders in Northeast Ohio, the Institute has learned that urban revitalization is a process, one with many steps supported by great partnerships. Thriving Communities is helping secure vacant, unhealthy properties by establishing and supporting county land banks throughout the region. County land banks provide counties with much-needed ability to quickly acquire foreclosed and vacant property. These land banks can safely hold a distressed property, clean its title, and prepare it for a better day. The goal is to secure vacant properties – which would otherwise attract crime, lower neighboring home values, and incur public services costs – so that they can be put to better use in the future.

Additional information about the Thriving Communities Institute is available through their website: http://thrivingcommunitiesinstitute.org/. This site includes opportunities to provide support, become better engaged, and share stories or photographs. Questions about the Institute may be directed to either Jim Rokakis (jrokakis@wrlandconservancy.org) or Robin Thomas (rthomas@wrlandconservancy.org).

What Can I Do Today?

City of Cleveland Seeks Input: Climate Action

March 18, 2013 in cleveland, climate action, Environment, News

The City of Cleveland Mayor’s Office of Sustainability is leading a community process to create a Climate Action Plan (CAP) to not only reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, but also plan for changes in the climate that will affect Clevelanders. The CAP is crucial to making Cleveland a more sustainable community. The City of Cleveland is examining how planning, policy, funding, infrastructure and land development decisions affect GHG emissions and local resilience to the impacts of climate change. The City of Cleveland needs your input to help create goals, actions, and policies that are both bold and achievable, to tailor national best practices to Cleveland, and to take Cleveland to the next level with an integrated and more detailed approach to sustainability and climate action planning.

There are two ways to get involved in this process:

  1. Participating online at The Civic Commons. Join the conversation here. 
  2. Save the Date and attend the Public Meeting, on April 11, 2013, from 5:30-7:30pm at Tri-C Main Campus

Digi-NEO…facts about Northeast Ohio

March 15, 2013 in Conditions and Trends, Connections, Engagement, Environment, News, Quality Connected Places, Transportation

During the course of developing the NEOSCC Conditions and Trends Platform, we developed 33 findings across the subject matter areas of economic development, transportation, housing, the environment and quality connected places in Northeast Ohio.  In order to communicate some of these findings, we have developed the Digi-NEO program which highlights different facts about the region’s successes as well as its challenges.

Visit our Digi NEO Gallery to learn more about our region.