The spotlight hasn’t dimmed on Greater Cleveland since the sacred day that the Cavaliers won the NBA Championship in June. All summer long, the region shines on a national stage with celebrations like the Cavs’ victory parade and opportunities like the Republican National Convention. The Momentum doesn’t seem to stop. Enter: The new CNBC show, “Cleveland Hustles,” featuring the trendy Detroit Shoreway neighborhood and starring Akron-area superstar, Lebron James. The show offers another platform for Northeast Ohio to show the world everything we’ve got, and everyone involved is taking advantage of the opportunity.
Regular contributor, Adam Rosen, happens to be the Economic Development Director for Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization. He offers us some behind-the-scenes insight about the how the show came to life and the neighborhood it showcases.
It began on a cold, February day in Cleveland when the CNBC production crew was first introduced to the Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization (DSCDO) through Cleveland City Councilman Matt Zone. We almost didn’t believe our ears when representatives from the Magical Elves (hired by CNCB to produce the show) had interest in our neighborhood. We scrambled to put some tours together showcasing available retail space, community anchors and several existing small businesses.
The CNBC team saw the potential for new business growth and wanted to contribute to the ongoing revitalization in Detroit Shoreway. With this mission in mind, the Cleveland Hustles crew hit the ground running.
The Shoreway on Air
CNBC’s Cleveland Hustles, an 8 episode reality television show co-produced by NBA CHAMPION LeBron James and SpringHill Entertainment, premiered on August 24th. The show is “about giving hard-working people a life-changing opportunity to make their dreams a reality while creating real change in the Cleveland community,” according to fellow co-producer Maverick Carter. It started with 20 Cleveland small businesses looking to grow and expand, and four local investors looking to help. The investors, Alan Glazen, Kathy Futey, Kumar Arora, and Jonathon Sawyer, each choose two businesses, and give them challenges to see how they fare. At the show’s conclusion, each investor chooses one business to invest in and help them open in Gordon Square, the Detroit Shoreway neighborhood’s downtown.
As the show unfolds, viewers nationwide will witness the comeback of the Detroit Shoreway neighborhood and Gordon Square, as the four chosen businesses hustle to create their spaces.
Two of the spaces are located in the heart of the Gordon Square Arts District. They occupy 6706 Detroit Avenue, a long vacant space owned by Detroit Shoreway, nestled between Sweet Moses and Near West Theatre. The other two businesses will help to connect Gordon Square to the lakefront and Edgewater Beach at 1265 W. 65th Street, and strengthen the linkage to the adjacent Ohio City neighborhood at 4303 Detroit Avenue.
Behind the Scenes
As much as happened on screen, there was plenty of excitement behind the scenes as well. DSCDO staff helped set up a community town hall In March 2016 to hear business pitches from the 20 businesses to the 4 investors. Next up, the 8 finalist businesses were asked to set up pop-locations in Gordon Square. Many of the pop-ups were held in spaces rehabilitated by DSCDO. Then, as the business winners were selected, much assistance was provided in the 90-day mad dash to get open. This assistance included helping with city approvals and permits, supporting the production crew, and securing financial incentives for businesses.
While there is plenty of excitement about the Cleveland Hustles businesses, we are even more excited to see vacant storefronts fill up with new businesses across the neighborhood.
This summer, we welcomed the chic and classy, Arcadian Food and Drink, and Land of Plenty, a vintage and modern home décor shop to Gordon Square. Brewnuts Donut Bar, City Breaks Breakdancing Studio, Ilthy pop culture apparel, the Boiler 65 seafood restaurant, and Astoria Marketplace and Café are all preparing to open in Detroit Shoreway in the coming months.
READ ALSO: 10 Reasons to LOVE Lake Erie
The positive momentum in the neighborhood is a force to be reckoned with and we anticipate continued growth, development, and business retention in 2017!
DSCDO serves Detroit Shoreway, a funky, diverse neighborhood of 13,000 people two miles west of downtown Cleveland, home to the Gordon Square Arts District, Edgewater Park and the Lorain Avenue Antiques District. Contact Adam Rosen (firstname.lastname@example.org), for more information about the neighborhood, how to spend a day, evening or weekend here, or open a business. We encourage you enjoy all that Detroit Shoreway and Gordon Square have to offer.