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Policies & Strategies
Link: Transportation and Transit Printabe Version (PDF)

The goal of the City’s efforts in the area of Transportation and Transportation Infrastructure is to provide a variety of transportation options that serve residents of all income levels and that promote economic development while protecting the quality of life in neighborhoods. With this goal and the challenges identified above in mind, the
Connecting Cleveland 2020 Plan therefore sets forth a comprehensive set of policies, each addressing a key issue, and strategies through which we might take immediate steps toward their implementation:

  1. Transit-Oriented Development. Target high-density development in proximity to transit stations and major bus stops in order to support public transit and strengthen the competitiveness of urban neighborhoods.

    1. Work with the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) to target areas in which large tracts of vacant or underutilized land exist around current and future rapid transit stations, exploring Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) opportunities at each.

    2. Encourage high-density residential development around transit stations.

  2. Mixed-Use Development. Encourage mixed-use development that reduces dependence on motorized vehicles to reach employment and shopping destinations.

    1. Work with developers to provide residential options that include above-street-level apartments, including lofts and live/work units, in retail districts (mixed use development) and housing within walking distance of shopping areas, major employers or public transit.

  3. Mass Transit. Support improved bus and rapid transit service to serve individuals who require or prefer mass transit and to reduce the pollution and roadway congestion caused by use of personal automobiles.

    1. Use public funding and employer incentives to strengthen and maintain public transit services across the city and region as alternatives to private vehicles.

    2. Fund innovative, incentive-based programs (such as tax credits) to encourage the use of alternative transportation modes such as public transit, walking or biking.

    3. Promote alternative modes of travel, including transit, that are cost-effective and less harmful to the environment than the private auto.

    4. Encourage the use of hybrid vehicles to replace traditional fuel automobiles.

  4. Neighborhood Bus Service. Provide convenient bus service to residents who depend on mass transit to reach such neighborhood destinations as shopping, recreation and medical services.

    1. Encourage RTA to continue, and expand, its “Community Circulator” program.

  5. Transit Amenities. Work with the RTA to upgrade the condition of bus shelters, transit stations, and transit vehicles, and to provide improved information on schedules and routes.

    1. Assist RTA in the implementation of their transit waiting environment improvements program within the City of Cleveland’s borders. (Please contact RTA’s Department of Planning and Programming for further information regarding that program.)

  6. Transit Line Extensions. Consider strategic extensions of existing mass transit lines where significant ridership increases are likely.

    1. Explore the possible extension of the Waterfront Line to connect the northeastern neighborhoods and suburban areas to Downtown.

    2. Explore the possible creation of new rapid transit lines westerly through the Cudell neighborhood toward the cities of Lakewood and Rocky River and southeasterly through the Corlett and Union Miles neighborhoods.

  7. Bicycle Travel . Develop a citywide and regional network of safe bicycle routes connecting residential areas to work, school, shopping, and recreation destinations; and make bicycle accommodation a routine component of roadway and development projects.

    1. Make Cleveland a more bicycle-friendly city by actively encouraging public and private development and maintenance of facilities that allow easy bicycle access to all of its amenities.

    2. Provide good bicycling infrastructure and facilities around shopping areas, parks and other attractions to enhance accessibility, improve personal health, and preserve the environment.

  8. Pedestrian Travel. Make Cleveland a model for pedestrian-friendly neighborhoods, featuring conveniently located sidewalks and paths, benches and streetside development patterns.

    1. Actively encourage the development and maintenance of facilities that allow easy pedestrian access to all of its amenities.

    2. Provide good pedestrian infrastructure and facilities around shopping areas, parks and other attractions to enhance accessibility, improve personal health, and preserve the environment.

    3. Plan new pedestrian-friendly developments in areas where people have transportation choices such as rapid transit train and bus service.

  9. Maintenance of Existing Infrastructure. Cleveland ’s transportation infrastructure needs to be maintained and updated to accommodate shifts in modes of transportation and in residential, business, and commercial patterns to enable the city and its opportunities to remain economically viable and accessible to all.

    1. Work with regional, state and federal agencies to give priority to the maintenance of existing transportation infrastructure in the allocation of transportation funding.

    2. Improve the conditions of key transit stations by targeting those in substandard condition and replacing them with updated designs that incorporate new technological features.

    3. Emphasize greater efficiency and cleanliness in all public transportation vehicles and facilities.

    4. Enhance the aesthetic quality of all new and rebuilt transportation facilities whenever possible. Such enhancements could include the utilization of special pavement textures and/or colors, adding vegetation, adding unique design elements or paint colors or the inclusion of public art.

  10. Ports. Ensure Cleveland’s long-term viability as a hub for air- and water-based transportation, while reserving appropriately located land for waterfront recreation.

  11. Regional Land Use Planning. Coordinate roadway and transit development planning with land use plans designed to limit the negative impacts of urban sprawl and promote more efficient use of existing infrastructure and community facilities.

    1. Promote regional and statewide planning that combines the transportation, land use, and environmental efforts of all affected parties.

    2. Support greater public involvement in the transportation and land-use planning process.

  12. Industrial Access: Develop roads that provide direct truck access between freeways and industrial areas, bypassing residential neighborhoods where truck traffic degrades the quality of life.

    1. Implement key access improvements in neighborhoods that make it easier for trucks and other commercial vehicles to access major roadways, bypassing residential neighborhoods, where feasible.

    2. Implement existing plans for access roadways.

    3. Plan for new access roads, such as the Bessemer Road (II) Project, in Collinwood, Kinsman, Central and other neighborhoods where industry operates in close proximity to residential areas.

  13. Job Access. Provide transit service between central city neighborhoods and employment concentrations in the city and in outlying areas.

    1. Work with RTA, project engineers, and developers to ensure that new and existing places of employment can be accessed by RTA vehicles and encourage RTA to serve these areas on a regular basis.

  14. Traffic Calming . Institute “traffic-calming” measures in residential areas and neighborhood shopping districts where existing traffic volumes and speeds create safety hazards and unpleasant conditions for residents and shoppers. Effective traffic-calming measures include lane narrowing, speed humps, rumble strips, curb extensions, small deflector or channeling islands, roundabouts, chicanes, marked bicycle lanes, advisory signage, tighter corner radii, special pavement textures (cobbles, bricks, etc.) and markings to designate special areas, and trees planted along the street to create a sense of enclosure and a pedestrian-oriented environment.

    1. Implement traffic-calming measures in neighborhoods where existing traffic levels degrade the quality of life for residents and discourage residential or commercial redevelopment.

Major transportation improvements that are proposed in the Citywide Plan can be found in the Capital Improvements section.

For more information regarding:

  • The City of Cleveland’s Bicycle Plan: See the Recreation chapter of this document.

  • Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority’s services and planning activities: Visit

  • Port of Cleveland & Cuyahoga County: Visit

  • Cleveland Hopkins International Airport : Visit

  • Key Road & Bridge Construction Projects for the current year: See City Projects at

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