First building permit issued for City Club Apartments tower

first construction permit has been issued for the proposed new City Club Apartments

At long last, the first construction permit has been issued for the proposed new City Club Apartments tower in downtown Cleveland, which will have an address of 776 Euclid Ave. (Vocon).

On Wednesday, Cleveland’s Building Department issued the first of what will likely be many building permits for the construction of a 23-story apartment tower at 776 Euclid Ave. downtown. It is the first documented evidence that the nearly $100 million City Club Apartments tower is about to see tangible construction activity after numerous delays.

The permit issued is for relatively modest work — a $115,000 job to be done by Mr. Excavator Inc. of Kirtland to install 13 catch basins with manholes, one grease interceptor, a 784-linear-foot storm and or sanitary sewer, and 120 linear feet of water distribution piping, the permit showed.

For the work to be done, it will likely require closing off and ripping up some or all of the existing parking lot at the above mentioned address. For many urbanistas, they will almost certainly rejoice in seeing a surface parking lot in downtown Cleveland torn up for site preparation to construct the planned 240-foot-tall tower called CBD Cleveland.

The 300-unit apartment building will connect to the existing parking behind, have balconies for many units, pool, fitness center and ground-floor retailers/restaurants. One could potentially be called The Hippodrome, a nod to the building and its ornate theater which stood on the site until 1981. Next door is the 1901-built City Club of Cleveland which coincidentally has a name similar to that of the planned apartment building.

building permit for the new City Club Apartments tower

Yes, Virginia, that’s a bonafide building permit for the new City Club Apartments tower. Although it’s “only” for site preparations work including drainage, it is a job that must be done before foundation work can start (B&H).

To avoid court orders to stop demolition, the Hippodrome Building was substantially razed in the middle of the night by Alvin Krenzler, a real estate investor who was appointed as a federal judge several months later. The site has remained a parking lot for 40 years.

But hopefully no more, as evidenced by the city’s issuance of the building permit on July 14. Developing the apartment building is City Club Apartments (CCA) of Farmington Hills, MI. CCA has 22 residential properties throughout the Midwest — from Pittsburgh to Minneapolis and south to Louisville.

CCA currently has four major projects in development, including the one in Cleveland. The others are a 17-story project in Chicago called the Lakeview, a six-story building in Detroit called the Midtown, and a 31-story redevelopment of the historic Union Central tower in Cincinnati. The first three projects involve new construction.

Despite the tangible progress of this week, there still has been no public record filed showing that there was a change of site control to CCA or any affiliate of CCA. Site control change can be by property transfer or long-term lease, but none has been recorded by the Cuyahoga County Fiscal Officer.

work to relocate utilities from below the sidewalk to under Euclid Avenue

On May 7, city crews completed work to relocate utilities from below the sidewalk to under Euclid Avenue so that a construction tower crane for the planned City Club Apartments could be placed on the sidewalk (Ian Meadows).

However, such a change in site control could have occurred privately between CCA and the current property owner David Goldberg, doing business as GSK 720 Euclid, LLC, but not been filed yet by the county. Sources close to CCA said the developer is pursuing a 99-year lease with Goldberg to gain site control. Neither party was available for comment at this time.

On Aug. 21, 2020, City Planning Commission gave final approval of the apartment tower’s design. One of the reasons why it has taken nearly 11 months to see the first building permit issued is reportedly because of CCA’s founder, chairman and CEO Jonathan Holtzman. Sources close to the project say he has been extremely demanding and difficult to work with in getting deals done.

The sources said interior designs were reportedly changed to achieve CCA’s already tight budget constraints made more challenging by record-high materials prices, such as for steel and wood. But those same sources said Holtzman has been upbeat and optimistic about the prospects for delivering CBD Cleveland apartment tower.


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