Detroit Shoreway/Cudell Charrette Week Recap

The Detroit Shoreway/Cudell charrette week was a success! Thank you to everyone who participated! 

If you weren’t able to attend any of these events, you can still provide your input by commenting below or sending us an email.


The Detroit Shoreway/Cudell Charrette kicked off Monday with more than 20 people gathering at Happy Dog for a bike tour. People brought their own bikes, rented some from a nearby bike share station and even rented a few electric scooters. The group traveled to key areas in the neighborhood to share current issues, discuss new opportunities and learn more about form-based codes. Click here to check out the bike tour route. 


The Hands-on Workshop was a success! The Workshop included an opening presentation and an interactive breakout session. Freddy Collier (Director of City Planning) opened up the evening, giving a brief project introduction and thanking everyone for coming out. Lee Einsweiler (lead consultant) walked the participants through the charrette week, highlighting opportunities for input over the next few days. He also explained future land use and zoning changes, the development of the form-based code for this area and ideas for discussion points to help facilitate discussion at the breakout tables. Chris Bongorno (of Nelson Nygaard) closed the presentation with a discussion on mobility and transportation before breaking the participants into small groups.

A copy of the presentation can be downloaded here.

Following the presentation, the attendees divided into 5 tables. Each group included a facilitator that directed the conversation and recorded notes. At the conclusion of the breakout session, each table selected a spokesperson to present their ideas to all of the participants. Each group decided on three “big ideas” to share. See what each table had to say down below, and check out the Community Feedback Map, which showcases all the big ideas from the night. 

Table 1:

  • Connectivity needed from industrial areas to surrounding neighborhoods. Address the connection under the Lake Avenue bridge.
  • Mid-rise buildings and pedestrian-friendly intersection needed at Lake Ave/Detroit Ave.
  • Active uses, greater density, good urban form and buildings pulled up to the street needed for vacant lots along Detroit Avenue.

Table 2:

  • Mid-block connections needed in residential area. Connections needed to make industrial area more approachable.
  • Mid-rise buildings needed at Lake Ave/Detroit Ave. Create a gateway or signature area.
  • Lake Park is a good asset, currently hidden. Long blocks in neighborhoods disconnect them from industrial and parks. Lake Park extension down to Detroit Avenue.

Table 3:

  • Roundabout for the Lake Ave/Detroit Ave intersection. Will create pedestrian-friendly and safe crossings.
  • Make backyard development possible. Don’t separate the parts of the neighborhood.
  • Have compatible transition uses between the industrial area and the surrounding neighborhood.

Table 4:

  • Retain – Retain existing industrial businesses, helps keep jobs in the neighborhood. Also retain existing residents in these areas.
  • Activate – West part of Detroit Avenue needs active development; make it feel more like a city. Ensure safety for the large vacant areas and add density.
  • Infill – Street trees along Detroit Avenue and Lake Avenue. Retain the character of the central neighborhoods (1-4 family homes). Commercial infill with larger mixed use buildings pulled up to the street.

Table 5:

  • Keep the feel of Cleveland and its history in the industrial area. The use can change or stay the same.
  • Lake Ave/Detroit Ave can be mid-rise (3-5 story) mixed use. Include mixed income, affordability incentive of extra height.
  • Constrained lots need flexibility with parking; reduce or eliminate parking, pull the building closer to the street.


The charrette continued on Tuesday with a Lunch and Learn opportunity led by Chris Bongorno (of Nelson Nygaard), focused on transportation and mobility. His presentation walked attendees through different options and strategies that could be used to positively impact local transportation within this study area. 


A handful of people gathered for the Wednesday Lunch and Learn. Lee Einsweiler (lead consultant) started with a presentation explaining form-based codes. A series of examples were shown of past successful implementation of these codes in different communities. This was followed by an open discussion to answer questions about form-based code being used in the Detroit Shoreway/Cudell areas.


A number of people stopped by the design studio to check out the current progress. Below is a list of what was put on display in the studio:

  • Annotated maps paired with the “3 Big Issues” identified by each table at the Monday Hands-on Workshop
  • Community feedback map summarizing everything we’ve heard so far
  • Character map paired with building typologies, details of each area, and diagrams of building step-backs and residential transitions


To wrap up the charrette week, a summary of the zoning and design ideas gathered throughout the week was presented by Lee Einsweiler (lead consultant) along with potential design scenarios for some “opportunity areas” in the community, including the intersection at Lake and Detroit Avenues and the industrial area just west of Battery Park. City Planning Director, Freddy Collier, kicked-off the presentation with an introduction of the project and kind words thanking everyone for their attendance and participation.

Check out the final presentation here. 

After the presentation, attendees were able to speak to members of the team to discuss their ideas and concerns regarding the project, referencing the material pinned up around the room – including 2D models, a map summarizing community feedback from the week, building typology sketches, and a character map showcasing the potential future zoning districts for the study area.

Missed these events? Don’t worry. You can still provide your input by commenting below or send us an email.

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