Does your organization encourage its employees and customers to use alternative transportation modes? If so we want to recognize and celebrate those efforts! Earn bragging rights among your peers for being one of the region’s top organizations for supporting green commuting.Read more
Commuting plays an outsized role in our transportation system. While commutes account for just 19% of total trips, they make nearly 28% of total vehicle miles traveled. The daily commute has literally shaped our transportation system, as roads are built to accommodate congestion during rush hour.
9 Ways Cleveland-based organizations are making it easier for citizens and businesses to become sustainable
As I began my journey with Cleveland Metroparks on April 2, 1983, I was definitely not looking 34 years into the future. Unlike William A. Stinchcomb, the 27 year old, City of Cleveland Chief Engineer of Parks, who in 1905 had the vision to create what would eventually become the Cleveland Metropolitan Park District in 1917, I just wanted to explore my new workplace and how I fit in. Through my time as a naturalist, nature center manager and now coordinator of the Centennial, I have fallen into a deeper understanding of Stinchcomb’s vision and what it has meant to so many. For this I am grateful.
Do you want to help reduce air pollution in Northeast Ohio? Air quality has improved substantially in the last few decades, but there are still improvements that can be made. It is up to every citizen to be informed and aware of air pollution, and for them to be diligent in taking steps to reduce it. As part of the Lexus Eco Challenge, six students at Saint Joseph Academy decided to do something about air pollution.Read more
Part I: Product Innovators
Between our winning sports teams, revitalizing neighborhoods, and thriving food and arts communities, Cleveland is clearly on an upswing. Another key to this revitalization is creating a sustainable economy that benefits all. A growing number of Cleveland businesses are leading the way in this transformation by:Read more
On Wednesday, January 18th, 2017, students participating in the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability’s Youth Sustainability Leadership Program (YSLP), along with other Greater Cleveland high school students, led Earth Day Coalition’s annual Student Environmental Leadership Conference for their peers at Baldwin Wallace University’s Center for Innovation & Growth. The Conference was attended by approximately 100 students representing fourteen private and public Greater Cleveland high schools.Read more
Great neighborhood projects are on the horizon, all through a sustainable lens. ioby has teamed up with The Cleveland Climate Action Fund and Resilient Cleveland to award matching funds, up to $5,000 per project, to residents and community-based organizations for their outstanding projects. This is a competitive match, meaning not all campaigns will receive match funds. Each donation to a campaign below will increase their respective competitiveness in the match.
Check out these 11 neighborhood projects, most of which emerged from our Sustainable Cleveland Summit, and help them spread the word.
- Operation Vegetables: The Big, Giant Board Game of Yummy Health! Gardens inspire the design of funny veggie superheroes in the format of a giant game board.
- The Cleveland Refugee Bike Project - Provides refugees with bikes and training, providing them an economic lifeline that can lead to new education and social opportunities.
- Feed People, Not Landfills - Plans to create 'wealth' from 'waste' by turning discarded food into community assets.
- GardenWalk Cleveland 2017 - Organizes free tours of private and community gardens in some of Cleveland's great neighborhoods.
- Swords to Urban Plowshares - Training homeless veterans in urban agriculture and Permaculture.
- Cleveland Youth Greenhouse - Harnessing the vision, creativity and energy of children to transform a vacant lot and abandoned houses into an accessible, safe, and attractive learning center and green learning lab.
- Cleveland Bike Library - Bikes purchases from local bike shops available to local students for checkout.
- Baker Biker Box - Students to design and create a bike box so the community will have a weather safe area for their bikes.
- African Solar Village Green Project - Inspire and empower at risk youth through gardening and environment stewardship.
- Bee-Lieve Harvest Festival - Familiarizing youth with green culture, water conservation, growing your own food, bee keeping, and healthy eating habits.
- Icabod Flewellen Urban Agricultural Project - Developing a property and converting the house into an agricultural learning center for the community.
Click here to learn more about supporting these projects... and help spread the word!
In 2016, Cleveland is celebrating the Year of Sustainable Transportation by supporting healthier forms of moving around the city and region. Celebration Years are a key element of the Sustainable Cleveland 2019 initiative, where every year leading up to 2019, Cleveland focuses on one of the key areas fundamental to a sustainable city. And nothing is more fundamental than creating livable cities through sustainable transportation. The Sustainable Cleveland Celebration Years are designed to help all members of the community take action — households, neighborhoods, businesses, and institutions can all participate, either in collaboration or independently. So the timing is perfect for Janette Sadik-Khan to be come to Cleveland. She’s not just a visionary, but an action-oriented visionary.
There are many actions Clevelanders can take, including biking, walking, taking transit, carpooling, car sharing and much more. Not only do these actions reduce roadway congestion and carbon pollution (the transportation sector is now the largest source of carbon pollution in the U.S.), they also provide health benefits and improved air quality. In Northeast Ohio, we have many more of these benefits to reap -- about 70% of commuters in Northeast still drive alone to work. Janette’s talk will add more tools to our sustainable transportation toolbox as we look to continue progress in Cleveland and Northeast Ohio.
Janette will be coming to a city that has been working hard to build a more sustainable and healthy transportation system. This year we’ve launched a bike share system, UHBikes, that will soon expand to 250 bikes across 29 stations. With the Bikeway Implementation Plan, we are on pace to add 70 miles of bike infrastructure in four years (2014-2017). Safe Routes to School has conducted walk audits at 69 K-8 school buildings to improve walking and biking conditions. With the #igoRTA campaign, more than 20 organizations across the city now give discounts to people who show their RTA ticket or pass. Planning has also begun for Midway Cycle Tracks, which would function like the HealthLine on Euclid Avenue, but for bikes instead of buses. This is just the tip of the iceberg.
While progress is clearly being made in many areas, much work remains, and now is the time to take that work to the next level. With public input, the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA) is developing a Long-Range Transportation Plan to help determine how to spend $13 billion transportation dollars by 2040. The City of Cleveland and its partners continue to explore approaches to implementing the Complete and Green Streets ordinance, including the next Bikeway Implementation Plan. And more investment is needed to meet current and unmet demand for public transit. Transit funding from Ohio’s General Revenue Fund has steadily decreased over the last 15 years. While Federal Highway money has made up some of the gap, much more is needed to ensure all Clevelanders can easily and affordably move around the city and get to jobs.
By working collaboratively, asking the right questions, and promoting innovative solutions, Janette Sadik-Khan was able to accomplish transformative action in New York City. This is the type of approach we need in Cleveland and Northeast Ohio to build off our momentum and scale up progress.
p.s. Looking to get a taste of healthy and sustainable mobility before the talk? Check out ciCLEvia, an open streets initiative launched in 2016, whereby streets are closed to cars and open to people-powered movement -- running, biking, yoga, hopscotch, and much more. The last ciCLEvia of the year was held the second Saturday in October on West 25th St, between Clark Ave. and MetroHealth.
This blog was originally published on the City Club of Cleveland blog
Working Groups are comprised of individuals and organizations working together throughout the year on projects, programs, and policies that are making Cleveland more sustainable.