Learn How Freeways Did and Didn’t Change the Face of Cleveland in a New Film at the Cleveland Public Library

Shaker Lakes would have been history if a freeway had gone through here.

Sat 3/9 @ 2PM

Local filmmaker Brad Masi continues his three-part exploration of how changes in transportation have impacted the geography, culture and socio-economic structure of northeast Ohio in the last 100 years with Freeway City, a sequel to his earlier Streetcar City.

In the 1950s through the 70s, Cleveland neighborhoods were chopped up, isolated and even wiped out by freeway construction, which hastened the migration to constantly more distant suburbs. But unlike Tremont and Collinwood, hacked up by such construction, one freeway was never built: The Clark Freeway, which would have torn a swath out of Shaker Heights and Cleveland Heights to connect I-90 to I-271 including the Shaker Lakes, Larchmere and the Cedar Lee district. Instead, blowback from the affluent, politically savvy community throughout the 60s eventually caused the proposal to be dropped in the early 70s.

That campaign to defeat the freeway construction is at the heart of Masi’s Freeway City, which will screen at the auditorium Cleveland Public Library downtown branch’s Louis Stokes Win. Masi will lead a discussion of the film following the screening. It’s free and open to all.

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