Quadrangle executive director Bill Beckenbach says, “The Quadrangle is strategically located for the next phase of downtown development,” adding that it “is poised for dramatic growth and expansion.” College Town, with one housing unit of 80 apartments, is a prime example of this projected growth, with plans in the works for additional development along Euclid Avenue, adding 45 rental units and eight condominiums.
The area is within a block of Playhouse Square, an easy walk to Progressive Field, The Q or Wolstein Center, and, according to Beckenbach, “has everything you need within walking distance.”
Trish Rooney lived in Lakewood for a long time. The recently appointed executive director of Lakewood Christian Service Center was born there and returned there after a brief move away from the area. But last year, Rooney moved to the Tower Press Building at 1900 Superior Ave.
A divorcée with a son who is graduating from Syracuse University this year, Trish admits that returning to Northeast Ohio wasn’t in her plans. She lived in California and the United Kingdom. “I left at the worst possible time for the city and returned to find that it was a different place.” But her journeys brought her back to the area, and ultimately to downtown. “I’m a huge supporter of the initiative to bring Cleveland back. Living here is part of that.”
Like so many downtown workers, Rooney spent time there but didn’t explore. She worked at the Great Lakes Science Center for a number of years, but only recently became a supporter of the initiatives taking place at Northcoast Harbor. Now she walks everywhere, from the local Starbucks for her morning coffee to St. Peter Church, where she has become more active as a parishioner and has been given a key to enter at any time and help out with gardening.
“I’ve always had a garden. The church has a courtyard with a garden. I asked Father Marrone last year if I could help out and he told me to create my own environment.”
Although she does not do the planting, Rooney is responsible for watering and maintenance — “a lovely opportunity for me to be in a beautiful garden that’s only two blocks away from home,” she says.
She attends neighborhood meetings focusing on The Ohio State University Extension establishing a new community garden in the neighborhood. “It’s only in the formative stages, but I would do that in a minute.”
Rooney’s enthusiasm about living in the Tower Press Building extends beyond her neighborhood’s nature-specific opportunities. She says she loves the building. She loves its high ceilings and polished concrete floors. She loves the fact that her neighbors represent true diversity, not only in terms of race but also their ages and lifestyles. They are Plain Dealer employees, Cleveland policemen and students at Cleveland State University. A law firm occupies the suite next door.
What she says she appreciates most is that she’s part of a neighborhood. When she wants to grab a bite to eat on the fly, she stops downstairs at Artefino. She walks to Starbucks and “hoofs it home.” An admitted foodie, she frequents Lola and #1 Pho, or jumps in her car and makes the five-minute drive to Tremont.
A supporter of Sparx in the City, a summer concert series and citywide art walk, she’s also passionate about her neighborhood’s galleries. She laughs about the fact that the first question people ask her is where she buys her groceries. “It’s so funny. People say ‘where do you shop?’ My answer is always the same: ‘Wherever I happen to be passing through. Wherever I can. And, there’s always Reserve Square.’”
Unlike many downtown residents, Rooney has kept her car. Commuting to her job in Lakewood is a breeze, and with the choice of jumping on I-90, taking the Detroit-Superior Bridge or the Shoreway, she’s discovered “this is the shortest commute I’ve ever had.”
In fact, the only problem she’s had so far involves decorating. “My little Victorian furniture didn’t work well in this space. I had 8-by-10 photos that just disappear with the high ceilings.” The upside is that she has wanted to support the local artists. “Guess that I’ll just have to purchase some original art.”
Spending time with the family and staying in shape don’t have to cost a (physically fit) arm and a leg. This summer, members of the CSU recreation center can bring their families in Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. to play basketball, weight train, free swim and much more at no cost. Not related to a member? Apply for a cost- and hassle-free two-week trial membership. The almost 2-year-old facility is perfect for the before-work adrenaline rush or the after-work stress reliever. Visit www.csuohio.edu/recreation_center for more info.}