On Oct. 17, a full house of Euclid-area residents and businesspeople gathered in the meeting room of the Euclid Public Library for the Euclid Chamber of Commerce’s Community Leaders Breakfast. First, Kacie Armstrong, library director, said a few words about the purpose of the library in the community. Next, Sheila Gibbons, Euclid Chamber of Commerce executive director, announced upcoming chamber events and introduced a representative from the breakfast’s sponsor, Allstate Insurance Agent Bill Mason.
The first guest speaker was Euclid Mayor Kirsten Holzheimer Gail. She addressed three areas of focus for the city: economic development, safety and building a vibrant community. Some recent and future projects in the city that bring in new investment and tax dollars for the city include 1,000 new jobs being created with the demolition of Euclid Square Mall and new construction of an Amazon distribution center, the creation of a technology center at Lincoln Electric and surrounding streetscape at E. 222nd St. and St. Clair Ave., a 25,000-square-foot expansion at Keene Building Products, a 40,000-square-foot expansion at American Punch Co., an expansion of Rick Case Honda, a groundbreaking for an O’Reilly auto parts store, and planned expansions to Irie Jamaican Kitchen and Mama Catena.
The second initiative, safety, includes promotions, new hires, training and community-education opportunities for the fire and police departments. Finally, building a vibrant community encompasses community cleanup, recycling, beautification and improvement grants. On Nov. 2, the city will unveil its master plan draft to the Planning & Zoning Department.
The second community leader to speak was Euclid City Schools’ Superintendent Charlie Smialek. He introduced a number of school employees in attendance as well as three Euclid High School students. Then, he went through a presentation on the district’s vision that included a new Fab Lab to be built as part of the Early Learning Center to introduce science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) instruction in grade school. It will be one of only two early learning Fab Labs in the nation. He also discussed technology programming at the high school and an update on the campus construction project that is underway for scheduled completion in 2020.
Both speakers fielded questions from the audience and gave a plug to support Cuyahoga Community College’s November 2017 bond, Issue 61 to update aging buildings.