CLEVELAND - The plan to turn Cleveland's West Shoreway into a boulevard will soon become a reality.
The West Shoreway is one of Cleveland's most scenic roadways, but has long stood as a barrier between Lake Erie and the west side neighborhoods to the south.
"The Shoreway is going to stay the same, but we're going to rip up all that ugly pavement, that median in the middle. We're going to make it a tree-lined boulevard with beautiful landscaping everywhere, a multipurpose path, where people can safety get on their bike and ride downtown," said Cleveland City Councilman Matt Zone.
Transformation of the 2.5-mile freeway to a boulevard will begin next year. The speed on the roadway will be reduced from 50 mph to 35 mph. The Ohio Department of Transportation said it will only add 75 seconds to the current commute for those for travel the Shoreway.
ODOT has already invested $28.8 million into the early phases of this project, like the West 76th Street and Lake Road tunnels, and the underpass at West 73rd Street.
On Tuesday, Ohio Gov. John Kasich told Cleveland Mayor Frank Jackson they've secured another $28.9 million to finish the project. In a sense, money from the federal government taken from states last month who transportation projects weren't shovel ready, but the Shoreway is.
"As a result of that, Ohio has reaped this year $73 million that we frankly have reclaimed from other states," Kasich said.
Zone said the west side has seen nearly a half billion dollars in private investments in advance of this project.