Is Cleveland a Dying City?

This morning I had the opportunity to stop by and visit with my husband’s former colleagues at one of the local hospitals.   I had an early appointment there and decided to stick around for a few minutes to avoid dealing with rush hour traffic, which, due to serious amounts of construction on the transit line in the vicinity of the hospital, was pretty backed up.   

Anyhow, we got onto the topic of this article regarding what they consider to be America’s Dying Cities.    I hate articles like this, because they always offer such a skewed perspective.   I mean, just look at the photo they chose to use to depict Cleveland.    Every major city in America has some neighborhood that looks like this.   I live in the city of Cleveland, the actual city, and work in downtown Cleveland.    This is not what Cleveland looks like.   Some neighborhoods, sure.    But overall, that’s not Cleveland.   

There was also a nice rebuttal of this article posted in the Plain Dealer on Sunday.   Rather than complain that the article is written by 3 CEO’s of local economic development organizations, it would be great if Clevelander’s acknowledged what a great city it is that we have.     Even if it is coming from those whose job it is to promote our city, it is completely true and accurate.    And, we apparently need someone to promote the city, because many Clevelanders do such a great job bashing it.

The hubby’s former colleagues were surprised at this ranking by, with everything that they see that Cleveland has going for it.   One of them happens to work with the medical school at CWRU and was telling me what a difficult time they have during med school recruitment because potential students come to Cleveland and ask why they would want to consider moving to Cleveland for medical school.   To me this is sad, because the healthcare sector is the one area where Northeast Ohio has seen some of the strongest and most consistent growth in the past ten years.   You can include with that biotech and biosciences.    But, if the rest of us won’t do anything to tout how great Cleveland is, it becomes difficult to recruit those who will rebuild our city’s newest industries and revitalize this region.    

The amenities available here, compared with the cost of living, are simply ridiculous (in a good way).    My in-laws could buy a mansion here if they sold their house in NJ, my husband’s grandparents could buy several houses here for the value of their small slab home in Los Angeles on a postage-stamp lot, and my retired mother manages to live in a one-bedroom apartment on $600 a month without needing our assistance.    As a teenager we were apparently considered below the poverty line for income, though I never noticed because it was so cheap and easy to live here and I had so many opportunities available.   I still feel that’s the case.    And another former colleague of the hubby’s left for a few years for a doctor gig in San Francisco…he is now decided to move back to Cleveland…yes, from San Francisco.

To anyone who says that Cleveland is a dying city, I’d tell them they are nuts.   

Until next time,

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