The historic Saint Luke’s Medical Center at East 116th and Shaker Boulevard was once an anchor institution in the Buckeye and Woodland Hill neighborhoods. Built in 1927, the 380,000-square-foot, neo-Georgian-style hospital served the health care needs of residents for more than 70 years. After the hospital closed in 1999, the grand structure sat vacant for more than a decade.
Today, the building and area surrounding it have been reborn as Saint Luke’s Pointe Campus. Following a $63 million renovation beginning in 2011, the campus now functions as a hub of activity and source of hope for the neighborhood as a place to learn, play, work and live. Cleveland Neighborhood Progress (CNP), with offices at the site, was instrumental in turning this project into a reality. It managed the complex public and private financing, led the fundraising and project oversight and management. CNP addresses community development within the Buckeye neighborhood and throughout Cleveland by helping to initiate neighborhood recovery strategies to create neighborhoods of choice that are increasingly able to attract residents and businesses.
The redevelopment of Saint Luke’s Pointe Campus involved the rehabilitation of Saint Luke’s Hospital into 100 quality, affordable and market-rate apartments for seniors. Additionally, 70,000 square feet of multi-use space has enabled the campus to thrive. The east wing of the building includes the Intergenerational School, a K-8 charter school; a Boys and Girls Club of Cleveland after-school program; a health clinic; the November Early Childhood Learning Center; and offices for Cleveland Neighborhood Progress and Saint Luke’s Foundation.
A typical day on campus:
Students at the Intergenerational School are immersed in busy days of learning. The free, high-performing charter school’s curriculum is based on five stages of learning rather than age- and calendar-based grade levels. Students progress through the stages based on demonstrated mastery of learning objectives.
Youngsters at the November Early Childhood Learning Center (an affiliate of the Centers) learn and play inside and out with educational and fun activities. There is a steady stream of laughter and noise throughout the hallways.
At the Boys and Girls Club, neighborhood children are busily engaged with programming designed to instill a sense of competence, belonging, influence and independence. Its programming includes educational and career-oriented programs, character and leadership activities, health and life skills training and a variety of arts, sports and fitness programs.
The Cleveland Metropolitan School District and the Cleveland Public Library each built new facilities on the properties immediately adjacent to Saint Luke’s Pointe. Plans include new housing, an intergenerational play area,
enhanced natural features, public art and a walking path, along with seamless connection to the soon-to-be-enhanced Rapid transit station.
Improved connection to the East 116th Street Rapid transit was an outcome of the neighborhood master plan and is vital to the growth and sustainability of Saint Luke’s Pointe. This project will begin by the end of the year and, once completed, will be named the Saint Luke’s Station. Saint Luke’s Foundation has made a grant to support accessibility, lighting and public art for the station. This station will not only be much more visually appealing, but a safer and more inviting welcome to the community that also is respectful of residents’ needs.
Having temporarily moved out of the neighborhood, Saint Luke’s Foundation is back where it started. Saint Luke’s Foundation invests in initiatives that transform and revitalize the Buckeye, Woodland Hills and Mt. Pleasant neighborhoods in addition to investing significantly in efforts to strengthen families and improve health outcomes throughout Greater Cleveland.
“Saint Luke’s Pointe is a lot more than just a building and a campus,” says Anne C. Goodman, president and CEO of Saint Luke’s Foundation. “It’s a symbol of an investment in people and the neighborhood in which they reside — an investment that creates exciting synergies, inspires real community
engagement and paves the way for significant future investments throughout Buckeye and surrounding areas. We are tremendously excited to be a part of that future.”
In a July 8, 2012, The Plain Dealer article, art and architecture critic Steven Litt captured the essence of Saint Luke’s Pointe when he wrote, “Overall, the St. Luke’s area project embodies a compassionate vision that combines historic preservation, strong contemporary architecture and urban design, high educational aspirations for Cleveland’s children, affordable housing and an emphasis on mass transit. That’s a lot of wins for a single development.”