CLEVELAND MEDICAL MART AND CONVENTON CENTER
The Cleveland Medical Mart & Convention Center is being developed by Cuyahoga County and MMPI of Chicago, the world’s leading owner and operator of showroom buildings and trade show facilities, bringing buyers and sellers together in more than 300 market events, trade and consumer shows and conferences each year. With a site in the heart of Cleveland’s civic center, one block north of Public Square and overlooking North Coast Harbor, the Medical Mart & Convention Center is proposed to be a “world class facility” integrating permanent showrooms for major medical manufacturers and service providers with new convention facilities to include Class-A exhibition space and state-of-the-art meeting rooms tailored to the needs of the medical marketplace.
LMN Architects and landscape architects Gustafson Guthrie Nichol Ltd., both of Seattle are lead project designers and presented concepts for the Cleveland Medical Mart & Convention Center to a joint meeting of the Cleveland Landmarks Commission, the Downtown/Flats Area Design Review Committee and the City Planning Commission on August 6, 2010,.
The Medical Mart will occupy the upper three floors providing a total of approximately 100,000 s.f. of showroom space in a four-story atrium building at Ontario Street and St. Clair Avenue. The ground floor of this building will have approximately 20,000 s.f. of meeting room space wrapping a 27,500 s.f. lobby space serving both the Medical Mart showrooms and events at the convention center. Pedestrian access to this lobby space would be at the northeast, southeast and southwest corners with vehicular staging for convention center event traffic on West Mall Drive.
The existing exhibition space of the Cleveland Convention Center under Malls B and C and Lakeside Avenue will be partially demolished to accommodate contemporary convention facilities meeting industry standards. Loading docks for the entire complex including the medical mart will use the existing access drive extending along the north side of the Huntington Park garage from West 3rd Street. A turn around at the southern end of the underground loading docks will allow deliveries to enter and exit at West 3rd Street and eliminate the need for the existing access ramp at St. Clair Avenue.
The existing landscaped roof of Mall B will be raised substantially to accommodate 30-foot clear heights in the exhibition halls that will be rebuilt below and to allow a new entrance to the convention facilities on the south side of Lakeside Avenue that extends the full width of Mall B. New landscaping of the roof over the exhibit halls will reflect the original intent of the Group Plan of 1903 with promenades to the east and west of a new central lawn. At the north end, an overlook will provide new vantage points for the downtown lakefront and Mall C.
The existing convention facilities under Mall C will be reconfigured to accommodate ballroom and meeting room space. The landscaped surface of Mall C will rise no more than one foot above its current height at Lakeside Avenue with the surface treatment continuing the promenades and central lawn associated with Mall B northward to the north side of City Hall and the County Courthouse. Emergency exit stairs serving the convention facilities below will require enclosures to the east and west of the promenades on Malls B & C.
After the demolition of the 1964 lobby building serving the existing Cleveland Convention Center, the historic west façade of Public Auditorium will be restored with multiple entrances at grade level allowing unobstructed access to the main floor of Public Hall. A new court will be created along the length of the west façade to allow pedestrian activity on a daily basis and accommodate vehicular drop-offs for Public Auditorium events. At the lower level of Public Auditorium, three connections will be provided to link the exhibition halls and Lakeside Avenue lobby for shared events. Service deliveries for Public Auditorium will utilize the loading docks for the Cleveland Medical Mart & Convention Center through a joint use agreement, minimizing delivery trucks at street level.