Disclaimer: This is a satirical piece.
By Chau Tang
Beginning Aug. 27, 2019, Public Square will be taken over by restaurants. Instead of relaxing in Public Square with friends and family to either walk or take photos, Clevelanders will be able to enjoy a new selection of cultural delicacies.
Cleveland is usually filled with citizens enjoying the many, already existing bars and restaurants downtown. Now, there will be even more to enjoy.
The process of renovating Public Square to include more restaurants will start in early 2019. The decision comes after many City Hall meetings about how to attract more visitors to Public Square.
The town leaders chose to let restaurants take over because people spend the most money on food. More restaurants joining Public Square could also mean more jobs which would open up opportunities to own homes and support themselves.
Even though there are franchises such as Taco Bell and Subway near Public Square already, the new renovations will install more cultural restaurants in one area. This will include Indian, Chinese and more genuine Mexican restaurants.
There’s also plans to open a Parisian café by Brooklyn Beige, who is excited to bring delicacies such as warm flaky croissants and sugar-free macaroons to Cleveland.
“I also love the idea of having more cultural dishes in one area! No matter what you’re craving, Public Square has it all!” Beige said.
While new restaurant owners are excited, Joe Phillips — owner of LucaHeights Grill — thinks the whole idea is ludicrous.
“Public Square has always been a family friendly place to relax, ice skate in the winter and take great photos,” Phillips said. “Ever since the Jack Casino came to town, this city has been motivated by money instead of community.”
Soon, there will be no ice skating, nor will there be space to walk. A sense of community is one of the most important factors for any city. So — in place of the usual community events, marches and protests that are typically allowed at Public Square — the restaurants will host free events for a limited number of hours each week.
To accommodate traffic from the new restaurants, the RTA and trolleys currently located in Public Square will be redirected. Instead of dropping riders off directly in Public Square, they will stop at other nearby bus locations instead.
All of these changes are very upsetting to some citizens, especially Edith Brooks who’s a single mother of three children.
“I come to Public Square every Saturday morning to have quality time with my children,” Brooks said. “Seeing more restaurants pop up like chicken pox is not a good atmosphere.”
Councilman Perry Nicholas points out that downtown Cleveland’s revenue is $3.5 billion, including restaurants, gas and shopping centers. Adding more restaurants would only increase that number.
While he understands people might be frustrated to see family friendly events such as ice skating being removed, he insists there will be more opportunities for families to get together by expanding their taste buds.
“This isn’t just about increasing revenue for this city,” Nicholas said. “This is a chance to build the bond of the community and to increase job opportunities for all.”