Virtual Public Information Meeting
Thank you to all who participated in our virtual public meeting on January 28, 2021. If you were unable to attend the meeting, a recording is available below.
Please submit any questions or comments using the form at the bottom of this page.
The Lakefront Public Access Plan was announced by County Executive Armond Budish during his State of the County address in 2019 and aims to improve transportation networks and increase public access to Lake Erie in concert with shoreline stabilization efforts. The Lakefront Public Access Plan covers three general topic areas: improved public access to Lake Erie, erosion control and ecological enhancement, and enhanced transportation networks along the shoreline.
Currently, over 90% of the Lake Erie shoreline within Cuyahoga County is not publicly accessible. This plan will detail a multi-modal network of connected paths, all-purpose trails, boardwalks, roads, bridges, and public access points across the Lake Erie shoreline. This will positively impact the lives of Cuyahoga County residents by increasing public accessibility and lakefront resiliency.
The Cuyahoga County Planning Commission is partnering with the Cuyahoga County Department of Public Works and a consulting team led by SmithGroup to develop the Plan. This process is being done in coordination with lakefront communities and regional entities. The Plan will include detailed analysis and robust public engagement intended to build a unified, countywide vision for enhanced lakefront access.
The Plan covers the entire 30-mile Lake Erie shoreline within Cuyahoga County. From the County's border with Lake County in the East to Lorain County in the West, the shoreline traverses six jurisdictions (the Cities of Bay Village, Rocky River, Lakewood, Cleveland, Euclid, and the Village of Bratenahl) and three Cleveland Metroparks Reservations (Huntington, Lakefront, and Euclid Creek). The Project Area is focused on the immediate shoreline, including the properties, roads, and infrastructure adjacent to Lake Erie.
Expanding the ‘Euclid Model’
The vast majority of Cuyahoga County's Lake Erie shoreline is privately owned, therefore cooperative partnerships with private property owners are essential to improving public access. One of the most successful local examples of this type of public-private partnership was created by the City of Euclid as a foundational part of their Waterfront Improvement Plan.
Private property owners, beach clubs, and condo associations along Euclid's waterfront were faced with a quickly eroding shoreline and expensive erosion control measures. Rather than confront the problem as individual property owners, they formed a unique partnership with the City of Euclid. The parties entered into an agreement in which the property owners granted the City an easement across their property in exchange for the City funding the construction of shoreline protection infrastructure and a publicly-accessible waterfront trail.
The Lakefront Public Access Plan will use the ‘Euclid Model’ to identify areas impacted by shoreline erosion in order to determine opportunities to improve transportation networks and increase public access to Lake Erie as part of public-private partnerships for shoreline stabilization.
Regional Planning Context
County Planning is coordinating with local communities and regional entities to develop the Cuyahoga County Lakefront Public Access Plan. The Plan builds upon past and current planning efforts including the following:
- Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA) Regional Lakefront TLCI
- Cuyahoga Greenways Plan
- Cleveland Harbor Eastern Embayment Resilience Study (CHEERS)
- Community Confluence TLCI
- Vision for the Valley TLCI
- Downtown Cleveland Transportation Connectivity TLCI
See the Regional Planning Context page for more information about these planning processes.
Public input will be important to the success of this planning process. Whether you are a lakefront property owner or a resident interested in better access to Lake Erie, your input matters. We will be hosting public meetings throughout the planning process in order to gather your thoughts and ideas.
County Planning is committed to meaningful public engagement, and the restrictions placed on public gatherings due to COVID-19 present unique challenges. In response, County Planning and our partners will be conducting virtual meetings with clients, stakeholders, and the general public. We are continually working to improve public engagement by incorporating the latest technology and techniques during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Find news and documents for the Lakefront Public Action Plan below:
- Bay Village and Rocky River dip toes into Cuyahoga County Lakefront Public Access Plan
February 1, 2021
- The Outspoken Cyclist: Show #539 (starts at 35:50)
January 30, 2021
- Cuyahoga Co. Planning Commission looking for input about connectivity plans for Lake Erie shoreline
January 30, 2021
- How Can Cuyahoga County Best Use Lakefront? Planners Seek Public Input
January 28, 2021
- Cuyahoga County kicks off lakefront planning effort to improve public access to 30 miles of Lake Erie shoreline
January 25, 2021
- Cuyahoga County Seeks Resident Input for Plan to Open Lake Erie Shoreline to the Public
Spectrum News 1
January 20, 2021
- Lakewood mayor joins Cuyahoga County Lakefront Public Access Plan effort
October 29, 2020
- Consultant hired for Cuyahoga County waterfront trail plan
October 27, 2020
- New barriers, plans for street dining while Cuyahoga County prepares for lakefront improvements
July 18, 2020
- Plans Unveiled for Cuyahoga County Lakefront Public Access Plan
October 17, 2019
- Public lakefront walkway plan unveiled
Crain's Cleveland Business
October 17, 2019
- Cuyahoga County proposes lakefront trail from Bay Village to Euclid
October 17, 2019