Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Campus will transfer to Heights Libraries
On Tuesday, Feb. 20, the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Board of Education voted to transfer the Coventry property to the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Public Library System for $1. The library board had voted to accept the property from the school district earlier in the month. As a tenant of the Coventry Building, a member of Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Campus, and a community development corporation, FutureHeights is delighted at this outcome, which will preserve the park and enable valuable community-serving organizations to remain in the Coventry building. We are working with the library and the other organizations that are part of Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Campus to develop plans for moving forward, including enhancements to the campus that will be a win-win for the neighborhood and the city as a whole.
FutureHeights is one of six Coventry Building tenants that has joined with the Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Park organization to form Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Campus (People Enhancing A Community’s Environment) when the Cleveland Heights-University Heights City School District announced on May 10 that it would pursue the sale of the Coventry School site. The district had agreed to sell the property to the city of Cleveland Heights for redevelopment.
On Sept. 11, Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Campus presented a proposal to Cleveland Heights City Council during its Committee of the Whole meeting. Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Campus presented its vision of the to the community on Sept. 27. (You can watch video of the entire meeting, or brief cuts on specific topics, at the Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Campus Youtube channel).
At the Oct. 2 CH City Council meeting, some council members expressed support for meetings between Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Campus and the city’s professional staff to discuss the proposal in more detail, and a first meeting, at which city staff said that the CH-UH BOE expected the city to move forward with an RFQ/RFP process, occurred about a week later.
Offers to present the vision to the CH-UH BOE were declined, but the CH-UH BOE discussed the Coventry building at its Nov. 6 meeting (video; the relevant portion begins at 1:13:00). Leases, rents and costs were discussed. Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Campus, and several of its member organizations, sent statements to the CH-UH BOE in response. You can read Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Campus’s statement here and the FutureHeights statement here.
Meanwhile, the CH-UH Public Library System, whose Coventry Neighborhood Library adjoins the Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Campus, expressed interest in obtaining the property and negotiations ensued. On Feb. 5, the CH-UH Library Board voted to accept the Coventry property from the district, and, on Feb. 20, the CH-UH BOE agreed to the transfer to the library. The property will transfer on March 31.
For more information about Coventry P.E.A.C.E. Campus, visit www.coventrypeacecampus.org.