Developers behind Church + State unveil plans for hotel, new apartments in Cleveland’s Ohio City neighborhood

CLEVELAND, Ohio – Developers submitted plans this week that show the apartment building and hotel they want to build right off the Veterans Memorial Bridge in an increasingly crowded area of Cleveland’s Ohio City neighborhood.

The designs submitted Monday to the city’s planning department show that developers Graham Veysey, his wife Marika Shioiri-Clark and Michael Panzica want to add 167 apartments in a two-acre property off West 25th Street near Detroit Avenue between the bridge and the Superior Viaduct.

The planned 233,000 square-foot project, which the developers have dubbed “Bridgeworks,” will be 11 stories tall and include a 160-room hotel, as well as a coffee and commons bar and a patio. The paperwork also details plans to add 180 parking spaces in a garage both above and underground and 30 spaces along the street.

Veysey, Shioiri-Clark and Panzica have been behind other projects in the Hingetown enclave of Ohio City, including the Church + State building a bit west on Detroit Avenue. Veysey said in a text that he was letting the submission to the planning department speak for itself.

“The project will energize a corner of W. 25th Street and Detroit Avenue that is void of activity and used for light industrial purposes, a use that no longer first (sic) the bourgeoning residential and retail area,” the developers wrote as part of the paperwork submitted to the city. It says the building will help connect the West Bank of the Flats and the north end of Irishtown Bend up to Ohio City.

The county in September 2019 agreed to sell the property, which includes buildings used as a garage and test lab for the public works department, to the developers for $4.15 million. It is one of four the county sold as part of a public works consolidation plan that will centralize operations a garage in Newburgh Heights previously used by the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority.

County records show the sale has not yet gone through. A county spokesman said he could not immediately answer an inquiry from cleveland.com and The Plain Dealer.

The plans the Bridgeworks developers submitted indicate that they don’t plan to demolish the buildings on-site to make way for their projects. The buildings, including a ticket booth for the streetcars that stopped running in the city in 1954, will be renovated for “non-public functions” of the hotel and will include commercial and public space, according to the plans.

Part of the facility was built in 1941 and another portion in 1964. The ticket booth predates both and is believed to have been built around 1917.

The project will represent yet another addition of apartments to the West Side area that has seen a lot of new construction in recent years. Buildings such as The Quarter on Detroit Avenue went up in recent years while others such as The Viaduct in the West Bank of The Flats are also planned.

It will also be built near St. Malachi Parish, a Catholic church known for its outreach to the city’s homeless population. The plaza on the property has been used as a gathering space for people served by the church and those waiting for buses.

Councilman Kerry McCormack, whose ward includes the property, did not return a phone call seeking comment.

The project requires approval from the Cleveland Landmarks Commission, as Ohio City is designated a historic district. The Board of Zoning Appeals will also have to OK certain aspects of the project.

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