Why I voted no on Nobility Court

On May 20, I voted against Nobility Court, developer TWG’s proposed 52-unit affordable apartment building development on Noble Road. I hope I’m proven wrong.

While development is critical for economic growth, affordable housing should be strategically placed around our city, not concentrated in one geographical area. It must be approached with a holistic perspective, focusing on long-term sustainability and the well-being of our residents.

Noble Road stretches from Mayfield Road to the border of East Cleveland, and is already home to 67 affordable apartment buildings. Sadly, these properties are in poor condition and have many vacancies. Moreover, the area lacks essential amenities such as banks, grocery stores, cafes, shops, pharmacies, and restaurants, making it less attractive for residents and potential renters.

I believe constructing another 52-unit affordable apartment building on Noble Road will further exacerbate the existing issues of segregation and transient communities. This trend not only fails to provide long-term stability, it also perpetuates cycles of White and Black flight, ultimately leading to a decline in property value and an additional burden on the city.

Instead of repeating past mistakes, we need to adopt a comprehensive approach to community development. This entails investing in current housing stock, revitalizing existing affordable apartment buildings, and creating a mix of new workforce housing [and] moderate house and condo options that facilitate a pathway to homeownership.

Furthermore, we must prioritize the enhancement of the community infrastructure, including the establishment of vibrant commercial areas by fostering a sense of community and stability. Coupled with other amenities, as well as the legislation I created allocating $2 million to Noble Road and Taylor Road, we can attract investment, improve property values, and ensure a brighter future for all residents.

It’s time to break the cycle of unsustainable development and embrace a new vision for the Northside of Cleveland Heights. Together we can build a stronger, more inclusive community that will thrive for generations to come. I can’t support a vision I can’t see.

Davida Russell

Davida Russell is a longtime resident of Cleveland Heights and is currently vice president of CH City Council.

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Volume 17, Issue 7, Posted 8:13 AM, 06.26.2024