Public Square's Bollard Plan Passes Design Review

Construction, and the removal of the Jersey barriers, will begin this fall

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Scene Archives

The Jersey barriers are coming down. The Jersey barriers are coming down. The Jersey barriers are coming down.

On Friday, the Cleveland City Planning Commission approved James Corner Field Operations' design overhaul of Public Square, which includes a tightened crosswalk, added bike lanes and a combined array of 60 steel bollards—where the dumpy, temporary Jersey barriers have been eyesores since the square's phase-one makeover was capped in 2016.

The removal of the barriers—and replacement by bollards—was framed as one further step to both securing and beautifying Cleveland's central meeting space.

"That is the big picture goal here," Veronica Rivera, partner at JCFO, said during the meeting.

Though the Planning Commission conditionally approved James Corner's second phase ideas for the square, Commission members requested more insight into how cyclists would both access and cut through the green.
Public Square's Bollard Plan Passes Design Review (7)
James Corner Field Operations

In addition to serving security functions, bollards will also, Rivera said, help deter illegal parkers. Especially those on the southwest side of the square, where Uber Eats drivers and others seem to leave their vehicles. (Rebol will see two removable bollards placed behind it for this reason.)

And, after the Jersey barriers go away to transportation hell, the current crosswalk bridging north and south, Rivera said, will be halved, from 93 feet to 45 feet. A raised crosswalk will be installed with the intention of ramping up pedestrian priority.

 Mayor Bibb, as was expected, was happy to see eye-to-eye with JCFO.

“I appreciate the thorough and thoughtful work that the team put in to get this plan right,” Bibb said in a press release. “Public Square is the people’s park, and this plan reflects that vision while prioritizing safety, function and aesthetics.”

Construction is expected to begin this fall, as managed by the Group Plan Commission.

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About The Author

Mark Oprea

Mark Oprea is a staff writer at Scene. For the past seven years, he's covered Cleveland as a freelance journalist, and has contributed to TIME, NPR, the Pacific Standard and the Cleveland Magazine. He's the winner of two Press Club awards.
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