CLEVELAND (WJW) – There’s a new plan to develop more green space near Euclid Beach, but it will eventually displace residents of a long-time mobile home community.
“I got it as a retirement home,” said 67-year-old Carol McClain. “I love living here because it’s 10 feet from the beach. Me and my grandchildren walk down in the summer. We walk along the beach, we come back.”
Recommendations for the “Euclid Beach Neighborhood Plan” include transitioning all 28 acres of land currently occupied by residents of the Euclid Beach Mobile Home Community to increase public access to the surrounding 139 acres of public lakefront property.
“There’s only a few wards in the city of Cleveland that are lakefront communities, and we have a neighborhood that adjoins directly to the lake,” said Ward 8 Cleveland City councilman Mike Polensek. “We’re unique. We’re the only neighborhood in the entire city of Cleveland.”
The land was purchased in 2021 by the Western Reserve Land Conservancy. Polensek said he is pleased with the purchase because it keeps the property out of the hands of developers who may want to develop real estate that the greater community in his ward may not support.
He hopes green space will eventually be taken over by the Cleveland Metroparks and developed into an attraction with amenities similar to Edgewater Beach for the community to enjoy.
“The biggest issue right now, in my opinion, is the residents who live in the mobile home park,” said Polensek. “I want to make sure they’re treated fairly and properly, but it’s clear to me the mobile home park is not sustainable.”
Recommendations under the plan also include new housing in residential areas near Euclid Beach.
McClain, who is on a fixed income, said she moved into the community in 2017 and pays around $500 per month for her double-wide unit. Her unit is one of 140 occupied units in the mobile community that would be displaced.
“I retired here and this is where I’d like to stay,” said McClain, part of the steering committee representing tenants. “With the way the economy is now, where do we move to?”
The Western Reserve Land Conservancy spokesperson said more than $90,000 was invested in the mobile home community in the past 13 months and issued the following statement:
“Our first priority is fair and equitable treatment of the residents of the Euclid Beach Mobile Home Community. We recognize how disruptive this entire process is and are doing our best to manage the property and respond to any tenant’s concerns. We have informed residents that no transition off of the Euclid Beach Mobile Home Community will take place for at least 12-15 months. We will be holding a tenants-only meeting next week to discuss further the recommendations and listen to tenants’ concerns.”
According to property ownership, a housing outreach specialist has been working with residents since September 2022 providing guidance on additional housing options.
No final decisions were made about what would ultimately be added to the green space.