20 Things in Cleveland That Are Gone That We'd Really Like Back

Progress is the name of the game and not everything sticks around forever, whether it's a person, a restaurant or an attraction. That doesn't mean we haven't lost something that should have stuck around. Here are 20 things Cleveland once had that it no longer does that the city would be better off for claiming in the present day.

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Dick Goddard
The best damn weatherman and one of the best damn people Cleveland has ever known passed away last year at the age of 89. Hopefully everyone is being kind to animals and each other to carry on his memory. (Photo via Cleveland Memory Project)

Dick Goddard

The best damn weatherman and one of the best damn people Cleveland has ever known passed away last year at the age of 89. Hopefully everyone is being kind to animals and each other to carry on his memory. (Photo via Cleveland Memory Project)

A Bustling Tower City Center
Tower City has seen better days, at least on the Avenue side. Dan Gilbert's Bedrock company is in the process of figuring out what to do with it. In the meantime, it's crickets, for the most part, with the shuttering of Tower City Cinemas and a 90% empty food court. Downtown could use a bustling mall, especially one that serves as a connector between the arena and Warehouse districts. Bernie Moreno, the newly minted Senate candidate, has plans to make it a tech incubator, but we wouldn't hold our breath. (Photo by Erik Drost/FlickrCC)

A Bustling Tower City Center

Tower City has seen better days, at least on the Avenue side. Dan Gilbert's Bedrock company is in the process of figuring out what to do with it. In the meantime, it's crickets, for the most part, with the shuttering of Tower City Cinemas and a 90% empty food court. Downtown could use a bustling mall, especially one that serves as a connector between the arena and Warehouse districts. Bernie Moreno, the newly minted Senate candidate, has plans to make it a tech incubator, but we wouldn't hold our breath. (Photo by Erik Drost/FlickrCC)

Lola, Lolita
We miss them both, and in both of Lola's incarnations. After Michael Symon moved Lola downtown Lola in Tremont became Lolita, before a fire that shuttered the operation years ago. Lola eventually followed to the dustbin thanks to the pandemic. As much as we love Mabel's it's hard to see a landscape where hometown chef hero Michael Symon doesn't have a Lola or Lolita in business. (Photo by Vince Grzegorek)

Lola, Lolita

We miss them both, and in both of Lola's incarnations. After Michael Symon moved Lola downtown Lola in Tremont became Lolita, before a fire that shuttered the operation years ago. Lola eventually followed to the dustbin thanks to the pandemic. As much as we love Mabel's it's hard to see a landscape where hometown chef hero Michael Symon doesn't have a Lola or Lolita in business. (Photo by Vince Grzegorek)

The New York Spaghetti House
Was it good? who knows. But it was a landmark downtown across from the Jake for years, and years before that. But it finally was demolished in 2015 after years of sitting empty, and boy, would it be hypothetically nice to have back. (Photo by Emanuel Wallace)

The New York Spaghetti House

Was it good? who knows. But it was a landmark downtown across from the Jake for years, and years before that. But it finally was demolished in 2015 after years of sitting empty, and boy, would it be hypothetically nice to have back. (Photo by Emanuel Wallace)

Cleveland Baseball Game Sellouts
Remember the energy of the Cleveland baseball team's 455-game sellout streak? Sure you do. It was great. There are many reasons why that couldn't or wouldn't happen now, but a town can dream. (Photo by @joy/FlickrCC)

Cleveland Baseball Game Sellouts

Remember the energy of the Cleveland baseball team's 455-game sellout streak? Sure you do. It was great. There are many reasons why that couldn't or wouldn't happen now, but a town can dream. (Photo by @joy/FlickrCC)

A Suitable Number of Trees
Despite Cleveland's plan to dramatically increase the tree canopy by 2040, the city has steadily moved in the wrong direction in recent years, continuing a downward trend that began in the middle of the 20th century. A new progress report on the Cleveland Tree plan, released Tuesday, found that the city lost more than five percent of its tree cover between 2011 and 2017. 
Using data from the 2019 Cuyahoga County Tree Canopy Assessment, the report, which was prepared by the Davey Resource Group in collaboration with Holden Forests & Gardens, Cleveland Neighborhood Progress and the Cleveland Tree Coalition, reported that Cleveland has been unable to reverse its current trajectory. And if the losses continue, the city will drop to only 14.8% tree canopy in 2040, far below its goal of 30% and significantly below peer cities in the region.  (Photo by Sam Allard)

A Suitable Number of Trees

Despite Cleveland's plan to dramatically increase the tree canopy by 2040, the city has steadily moved in the wrong direction in recent years, continuing a downward trend that began in the middle of the 20th century. A new progress report on the Cleveland Tree plan, released Tuesday, found that the city lost more than five percent of its tree cover between 2011 and 2017. Using data from the 2019 Cuyahoga County Tree Canopy Assessment, the report, which was prepared by the Davey Resource Group in collaboration with Holden Forests & Gardens, Cleveland Neighborhood Progress and the Cleveland Tree Coalition, reported that Cleveland has been unable to reverse its current trajectory. And if the losses continue, the city will drop to only 14.8% tree canopy in 2040, far below its goal of 30% and significantly below peer cities in the region. (Photo by Sam Allard)

Trust in Cleveland's Leaders
There was a time when Cleveland, no matter its faults and struggles, could trust the people at the top. It's, uh, been awhile. Be sure to register to vote if you haven't and show up at the polls for the next city council and mayoral elections. (Photo via City of Cleveland)

Trust in Cleveland's Leaders

There was a time when Cleveland, no matter its faults and struggles, could trust the people at the top. It's, uh, been awhile. Be sure to register to vote if you haven't and show up at the polls for the next city council and mayoral elections. (Photo via City of Cleveland)

A Unified Gordon Park That Goes to the Lake
Gordon Park on the near east side was once the size of Edgewater, before Cleveland put a highway through it and FirstEnergy built a power plant on a prime position on the lakefront. There are longterm dreams of moving the highway and reuniting the park, which is what William Gordon wanted when he donated the land to the city back in 1892. (Photo by Emanuel Wallace)

A Unified Gordon Park That Goes to the Lake

Gordon Park on the near east side was once the size of Edgewater, before Cleveland put a highway through it and FirstEnergy built a power plant on a prime position on the lakefront. There are longterm dreams of moving the highway and reuniting the park, which is what William Gordon wanted when he donated the land to the city back in 1892. (Photo by Emanuel Wallace)

Speak in Tongues
Like the act its name describes, the underground music venue at Lorain and West 44th, Speak In Tongues, represented an otherworldly mindset. What happened there, exactly? Chaos and invention. Performance art, music and theater. Freakouts and unnamable subterranean weirdness. There were lots of cats and plenty of cat piss. Exploding meat. Fireworks. The grit of Cleveland's ethos on acid. The place existed in its own universe and by its own rules. It wasn’t always pretty, but that was the point. 
From the fall of 1994 to New Year's Eve 2001, Speak In Tongues evolved as new characters moved in and designed the venue according to their individual and collective visions. Many involved would rather leave SIT in the past, others wish it never went away. (Photo by Ken Blaze)

Speak in Tongues

Like the act its name describes, the underground music venue at Lorain and West 44th, Speak In Tongues, represented an otherworldly mindset. What happened there, exactly? Chaos and invention. Performance art, music and theater. Freakouts and unnamable subterranean weirdness. There were lots of cats and plenty of cat piss. Exploding meat. Fireworks. The grit of Cleveland's ethos on acid. The place existed in its own universe and by its own rules. It wasn’t always pretty, but that was the point. From the fall of 1994 to New Year's Eve 2001, Speak In Tongues evolved as new characters moved in and designed the venue according to their individual and collective visions. Many involved would rather leave SIT in the past, others wish it never went away. (Photo by Ken Blaze)

Recycling
Hey, remember when the city of Cleveland picked up your recyclables and they actually got recycled? Us too, though it's been a while, and the city didn't even admit it or tell you and waited for reports to filter out before addressing the issue. Here's to a future Cleveland where two trucks don't come pick up your recyclables and garbage and drop them both off in the landfill. (Photo via City of Cleveland)

Recycling

Hey, remember when the city of Cleveland picked up your recyclables and they actually got recycled? Us too, though it's been a while, and the city didn't even admit it or tell you and waited for reports to filter out before addressing the issue. Here's to a future Cleveland where two trucks don't come pick up your recyclables and garbage and drop them both off in the landfill. (Photo via City of Cleveland)