Public Square Sprucing up for Casino Opening

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CLEVELAND, Ohio -- Cleveland's Horseshoe Casino is set to open in less than two weeks. In addition to increased security, several projects are underway to spruce up the landscape in and around Public Square.

"We've got a bunch of beautification efforts going on right now, in addition to the 55 ambassadors, that patrol the streets seven days a week," said Mark Lammon with the Downtown Cleveland Alliance.

Downtown city workers like Gus Thompson are hoping the changes improve the city's image. "I think they can clean it up a little bit more."

On Wednesday, the city of Cleveland ordered all protestors with the "Occupy Cleveland" movement to tear down their tents after their permit was not renewed.

Security changes are coming in the sky and on the ground. New signs are posted all over the square pointing visitors where to go. Police surveillance cameras will record activity in Public Square, and at least one police officer will be assigned to the area at all times.

"You'll see more uniformed officers, officers that are on bike. In addition, the mounted unit is staffed back up so you'll see horses patrolling downtown again," said Lammon.

Inez Bottoson said, "When I get off at work at night, it gets pretty wild, but having police around more, it will help."

"I feel very safe in Cleveland. We spend a lot of time here," said Pam Campisi.

"I just feel like it's going to open up a whole lot more problems for the Cleveland area," said Jackie Piscura.

Although DCA ambassadors are trained to deal with the homeless, Lammon says there are laws on the books to prevent panhandling.

"They can ask you for money, but they can't follow you. They can't ask you for money at an ATM, a bus stop, or in front of a doorway," said Lammon.

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