3 BIG misconceptions about Oakwood.

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The Oakwood development issue is terribly complicated, and we hope to clarify a few important facts.

1.First Interstate does NOT own the Cleveland Heights portion of the Oakwood Country Club. Although First Interstate has stated repeatedly and for many months that it has exercised its option on the Cleveland Heights portion of the Oakwood Country Club, the property HAS NOT changed ownership.

The deed has not been transferred and city officials have confirmed that the Cleveland Heights portion is still owned by the country club.

2. There is NO PROPOSED plan for mixed use buildings, apartments for senior citizens, office space, etc. The drawing that has been used in several articles that includes these uses is very misleading… No plan has been submitted to Cleveland Heights. The only plan for Oakwood is for the part that is owned by First Interstate–the South Euclid part only. The plan is for big box retail, strip retail and outlots with drive thrus.

Here are the first and second conceptual designs for the big box development on the South Euclid portion of Oakwood.

Is a plan for property you do not own meaningful?

3. First Interstate states they conducted a survey that indicated the residents of South Euclid are in favor of the development.  The only survey we know about involved a postcard in which the choices were to say “Yes” or “Yes”.

I have attached that postcard so that you can assess for yourself the value of such a “survey”. You will notice you could vote “Yes” or “Yes”. Perhaps the only thing this “survey” measured was the degree of deception First Interstate is willing to employ in dealing with our community.

This is our best understanding of the situation, perhaps First Interstate has different information, but I feel sure that if you contact them you will find out the above 3 statements are correct.

Our committee feels it is very important to keep everything as clear as possible for South Euclid voters, who will vote on a referendum about Oakwood in November.

Maybe it is more factual to state that South Euclid will be voting in November on a referendum for our entire community and the region.


  1. WhatYouSaid says

    Hey Fran, I was looking at the direct-mailer survey card and I couldn’t find the second “yes” box you mention in your article. Could it be that a vote of “yes” is the result of checking the box and sending the card back to the City of South Euclid (free of charge), and a vote of “no” is the result of throwing the card away in the nearest trash receptacle? You may not believe this, but the City of South Euclid has a pretty good idea of population and demographics within their city limits and the surrounding areas. As a result, they can deduce the real interest in such a development as the Oakwood Commons by way of doing the math once they receive the “yes” mailers back in an allotted amount of time. There’s really nothing insidious or bad about this process. It’s a form of marketing in which ‘providers’ (think entrepreneurs) determine what ‘users’ (think consumers) really want on their store shelves and in their communities.

    As for Cleveland Heights’ portion of the land described in the concept drawings, I believe (and I’m certain there’s a better legal term for this) it’s called land improvement of the surrounding area. It’s a really wild concept that’s practiced in just about every community of the developed world that goes something like this. If you want to build in our community (Mr. Developer), then we ask that you provide the following improvements to the surrounding area (the same community in which you will develop an otherwise dormant property). What’s crazy about this concept is that many municipalities across the country are provided with facilities like, schools, libraries, parks, fire stations, police stations and recreational areas, which elevate quality of life, attract new members to the community and increase the overall value of property within the community. Newer communities thrive and older communities are revitalized.

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