Note from Storm: For those of you who aren’t as old as I am (which is most of you), Ohio’s Cuyahoga River is the one that famously burned, not just once, but 13 times since 1868!
The 1969 fire is credited with convincing the American public that big business couldn’t be trusted to protect the public good, which led to both the U.S. Clean Water Act and the creation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.
I communicated with the brilliant folks who produced this Cuyahoga Regeneration Project report back when it was first published. Their regeneration plan struck me as one of the most holistic and comprehensive regional revitalization strategies I’d ever seen. While it was endorsed by many local leaders, my impression is that it went nowhere, which would be a shame, if true.
If any REVITALIZATION readers familiar with the situation would care to update us on the status, if any, of this work, please do so in the Comments section at the bottom of this page.
From the introduction to the report: This report describes the Cuyahoga Regeneration Project, a community effort focused on several projects that simultaneously restore natural systems and strengthen economic development along the Cuyahoga River ship channel.
The report contends that environmental restoration is no longer an option for American cities; it’s an imperative.
Though many people regard efforts to rebuild environmental assets as burdensome to a local economy, environmental restoration, when pursued intelligently, is both a minimum requirement for, and a path to, a strong economic future.
The Cuyahoga Regeneration Project advances these beliefs.