Lakewood, Ohio

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Lakewood, Ohio
City of Lakewood
"City of Beautiful Homes"
"A Great Place to Call Home"
Cuyahoga County Ohio incorporated and unincorporated areas Lakewood highlighted.svg
Location in Cuyahoga County and the state of Ohio.
Usa edcp location map.svg
Red pog.svg
Lakewood, Ohio
Coordinates: 41°28′51″N81°48′01″W / 41.48083°N 81.80028°W / 41.48083; -81.80028 Coordinates: 41°28′51″N81°48′01″W / 41.48083°N 81.80028°W / 41.48083; -81.80028
Country Flag of the United States.svg  United States
State Flag of Ohio.svg  Ohio
County Cuyahoga
  Type Mayor-council
   Mayor Meghan George (D) [1]
  Total6.70 sq mi (17.34 km2)
  Land5.54 sq mi (14.36 km2)
  Water1.15 sq mi (2.98 km2)
705 ft (215 m)
  Density9,190.33/sq mi (3,548.69/km2)
Time zone UTC−5 (Eastern (EST))
  Summer (DST) UTC−4 (EDT)
ZIP code
Area code 216
FIPS code [4] 39-41664
GNIS feature ID 1064966

Lakewood is a city in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, United States, on the southern shore of Lake Erie. Established in 1889, it is one of Cleveland's historical streetcar suburbs and part of the Greater Cleveland Metropolitan Area. The population was 52,131 at the 2010 United States Census, making it the third largest city in Cuyahoga County, behind Cleveland and Parma. [5] Lakewood is home to a young and diverse population, including a significant number of immigrants. [6]



Lakewood was incorporated as a village in 1889, and named for its lakefront location. [7]

Earliest days

The wilderness west of the Cuyahoga River was delayed being settled due to a treaty the American government made with the Native Americans in 1785, whereby no white man was to settle on that land. Consequently, when Moses Cleaveland arrived in 1796, his activities were confined to the east side of the river.

The area now called Lakewood was populated by the Ottawa, Potawatomi, Chippewa, Wyandot, Munsee, Delaware and Shawnee tribes until the Treaty of Ft. Industry pushed them west in 1805. [6] The treaty, signed at Ft. Industry near what is now downtown Toledo, Ohio, ceded 500,000 acres of some of the tribes' land to the United States for about $18,000 or 3.5 cents/acre. The Shawnee and Seneca, living with the Wyandot, were to get $1000 "...every year forever hereafter." [8]

The area now occupied by Lakewood, Rocky River, Fairview Park, and West Park was purchased from the Connecticut Land Company by a syndicate of six men headed by Judson Canfield on April 4, 1807, for $26,084.

In 1806 the area was formally surveyed as Rockport Township. In 1818, permanent settlement began with the arrival from Connecticut of James Nicholson. [9] Other early pioneers included Jared Kirtland and Mars Wager. Settlements were mostly along Detroit Avenue, a toll road operated by the Rockport Plank Company from 1848 to 1901, with large farms and properties extending north to Lake Erie. Making bricks and planting orchards were among the most prolific occupations until natural gas and oil wells were developed in the early 1880s. [6]

By 1819 18 families lived in Rockport Township. In 1893, streetcars came to Lakewood with the construction of the Detroit Avenue line, followed by the Clifton Boulevard line in 1903 and the Madison Avenue line in 1916. [10]

First government

Lakewood, the first suburb west of Cleveland on the shores of Lake Erie, began as Township 7, Range 14, of the Connecticut Western Reserve in 1805. It was a wooded wilderness through which cut the old Huron Post Road that ran from Buffalo, New York, to Detroit, Michigan. In 1819 a small group of eighteen families living in the area of present-day Lakewood, Rocky River, and part of Cleveland's West Park neighborhood named the growing community Rockport Township. In April of that year, the first election took place in Rufus Wright's tavern with a member of each household present. Three were elected as trustees: Henry Alger, Erastus Johnson, and Rufus Wright. Elected as overseers of the poor were James Nicholson and Samuel Dean. Henry Canfield was elected clerk. This type of government served Rockport for the next 70 years, with an election held each year.

In 1889 East Rockport, with 400 residents, separated from the township and became the Hamlet of Lakewood. Settlement accelerated rapidly, with Lakewood becoming a village with 3,500 residents in 1903. City status, with 12,000 residents, came just eight years later. By 1930 the population of Lakewood was 70,509.


The early settlers in Township 7 sustained their lives through farming. The land was ideal for fruit farming and many vineyards began to emerge. The fertile soil and lake climate that were ideal for producing crops is what attracted many people to move to the township. There was also vast amounts of trees to be used for building homes and other structures. The most common occupations in Lakewood were farming and the building trades.

First roads

Roads were the earliest influence on development in Lakewood. The Rockport Plank Road Company improved the old Detroit Road in 1848, opening a toll road from present-day West 25th Street in Cleveland to five miles west of the Rocky River. It continued operating as a toll road until 1901. A series of bridges spanning the Rocky River Valley, the first of which was built in 1821, improved commerce between Cleveland and the emerging communities to its west. An 1874 atlas of Cuyahoga County shows present-day main roads such as Detroit Avenue, Madison Avenue, Franklin Boulevard, Hilliard Road, Warren Road, and Riverside Drive.


Under the Ohio Common School Act of April 9, 1867, three schools were allotted to East Rockport, called 6, 8, and 10; they were later designated East, Middle, and West. Each school had one teacher. As the community began to grow and more schools were required, the school board adopted the policy of honoring Ohio's presidents by assigning their names to the school buildings.


The Rocky River Railroad was organized in 1869 by speculators as an excursion line to bring Clevelanders to the resort area they developed at the mouth of the Rocky River. Financially unsuccessful as a pleasure and amusement venture, the line was sold to the Nickel Plate Railroad in 1881. The railroad line still exists today, running in an east–west direction north of Detroit Avenue.

Lakewood Hospital

Lakewood Hospital first opened its doors in 1907. The hospital, founded by Dr. Lee Graber, was originally located in a double house on Detroit Avenue, then built a "modern" building in 1917 and was renovated in 1940, 1950, 1967 and 1970-71. The city of Lakewood purchased the hospital in 1931. The Cleveland Clinic added the hospital to its health system in 2006. [11]

In January 2015, the Cleveland Clinic announced it would close the hospital in 2016 and replace it with a family medical center. After a year of community debate, the hospital was closed. The new medical center which included outpatient programs, an emergency department and wellness services opened across the street from the old hospital site in 2018. None of the 845 employees of Lakewood lost their jobs, as they were offered other positions in the Cleveland Clinic system. [12] There was opposition to the closing from a citizens' group called "Save Lakewood Hospital" who contended that the city could find another entity to manage the hospital and keep it open. [13]

Government and politics

Lakewood is governed by an elected mayor and elected council. The council has seven members, with four members representing wards in the city and the other three are at-large council members. [14] Once politically dominated by New England Republicans, Lakewood has become a center for the progressive wing of the Democratic Party in Ohio. It was a stronghold of support for former Congressman Dennis Kucinich, and in the 2016 Democratic presidential primary, its voters strongly backed Bernie Sanders. [15] The city is currently represented in the U.S. House of Representatives by Marcy Kaptur (OH-9, D) and Shontel Brown (OH-11, D). [16] In the Ohio General Assembly it is represented by Nickie Antonio (D) in the State Senate [17] and by Michael Skindell in the (D) State House. [18]

Lakewood Park with a view of the Downtown Cleveland skyline
Cleveland, Ohio view from Lakewood Park (8421618126).jpg
Winter in Lakewood


#Mayor [19] Term startTerm end
1Ira E. Canfield18891891
2Clayton L. Tyler18921897
3Otto C. Berchtold18981899
4Jacab H. Tegardine19001901
5Joseph J. Rowe19021905
6Bernard Miller19061909
7Nelson C. Cotabish19101911
8John B. Coffinberry19121913
9Clayton W. Tyler19141917
10Byron M. Cook19181919
11Louis E. Hill19201923
12Edward A. Wiegand19241932
13Amos I. Kauffman19321955
14Frank P. Celeste19561963
15Robert M. Lawther19641976
16William E. Blackie19771977
17 Anthony Sinagra 19781990
18David R. Harbarger19901995
19 Madeline Cain 19962003
20Thomas J. George20042007
21 Ed FitzGerald 20082010
22Micheal P. Summers20112019
23Meghan George2020Present


Lakewood Park (22109567484).jpg
Lake Erie shore at Lakewood Park
Lakewood Street.jpg
A residential street in Lakewood
Lake Shore Towers in Lakewood.jpg
Lake Shore Towers on Edgewater Drive

Lakewood is located at 41°28′51″N81°48′1″W / 41.48083°N 81.80028°W / 41.48083; -81.80028 (41.480881, -81.800360), [20] about 6 miles (9.7 km) west of Downtown Cleveland. The city borders Lake Erie to the north, the Cleveland neighborhoods of Edgewater and Cudell to the east, and the neighborhoods of Jefferson and Kamm's Corners to the south. It borders the suburb of Rocky River to the west at the Rocky River valley. According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 6.69 square miles (17.33 km2), of which 5.53 square miles (14.32 km2) is land and 1.16 square miles (3.00 km2) is water. [21]



Lakewood is home to several high rises, spread throughout the city. Most are concentrated on the Gold Coast, and, to a lesser extent, in Downtown Lakewood. The Gold Coast includes Winton Place Condos, Carlyle Condominiums on the Lake, The Meridian, The Waterford Condos, Marine Towers West, Marine Towers East, Imperial House, The Envoy, Twelve Thousand Edgewater, The Shoreham Apartments, Edgewater Towers, Lake House Condominiums, The Berkshire Condominiums, and Lake Shore Towers. Downtown high rises include Lakewood Center North (186 ft), the municipality's tallest office building with 15 floors of office space and is the largest private office building in Cuyahoga County outside of Downtown Cleveland, based on total square footage. Other high rises in Downtown Lakewood include the INA Building (the first medical office building ever constructed), the Westerly West Building, the Westerly East Building, the Westerly South Building, and Northwesterly. Additional high rises in Lakewood include Castlewood Apartments, Richard Hilliard House Condominiums, Fedor Manor, Harbour View Apartments, Commodore Club Apartments, Mayfair Apartments.


Historical population
1900 3,355
1910 15,181352.5%
1920 41,732174.9%
1930 70,50969.0%
1940 69,160−1.9%
1950 68,071−1.6%
1960 66,154−2.8%
1970 70,1736.1%
1980 61,963−11.7%
1990 59,718−3.6%
2000 56,646−5.1%
2010 52,131−8.0%
2020 50,942−2.3%
Sources: [4] [26] [27] [28]

As of the census [29] of 2010, there were 52,131 people, 25,274 households, and 11,207 families residing in the city. The population density was 9,426.9 inhabitants per square mile (3,639.7/km2). There were 28,498 housing units at an average density of 5,153.3 per square mile (1,989.7/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 87.5% White, 6.4% African American, 0.3% Native American, 1.9% Asian, 1.3% from other races, and 2.7% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 4.1% of the population.

There were 25,274 households, of which 22.5% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 29.7% were married couples living together, 10.8% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.8% had a male householder with no wife present, and 55.7% were non-families. 44.8% of all households were made up of individuals, and 9.8% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.05 and the average family size was 2.99.

The median age in the city was 35.4 years. 19.6% of residents were under the age of 18; 9.6% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 34.3% were from 25 to 44; 25.7% were from 45 to 64; and 11% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.1% male and 50.9% female.

As of the 2007 American Community Survey, the median income for a household in the city was $42,602, and the median income for a family was $59,201. Males had a median income of $42,599 versus $35,497 for females. The per capita income for the city was $26,939. About 10.9% of families and 14.3% of the population were below the poverty line, including 20.3% of those under age 18 and 10.5% of those age 65 or over. Of the city's population over the age of 25, 39.0% hold a bachelor's degree or higher. [30]

According to the 2020 United States census, Lakewood had a population of 50,942. Of which, 82.7% were non-hispanic White, 5.2% were non-hispanic Black, 4.8% were Hispanic/Latino, 2.4% were Asian, 5.9% were mixed or other. [31]

Ethnicity and immigration

Lakewood's ethnic mosaic includes Albanian, Arab, Chinese, German, Hungarian, Irish, Italian, Mexican, Nepalese, Puerto Rican, Polish, Russian, Slovak, and Ukrainian ancestries. [32] As of 2019, 12.2% spoke a language other than English at home, including Arabic, Spanish, Albanian, Russian, Serbo-Croatian, and Hungarian. [33] The community is a hotspot for immigrants, arriving primarily from Southeast Europe (especially Albania, Romania, Greece, and the former Yugoslavia), [34] [35] the Middle East (Lebanon, Syria, and Iran), [35] [36] South Asia (India, Nepal, and Myanmar), [6] [37] and the former USSR (Russia, Uzbekistan, and Ukraine). [6] [38] The foreign-born population was approximately 8.6% in 2019. [33]


Public schools

Lakewood High School, April 2009 LHSoldbldg.jpg
Lakewood High School, April 2009

The City of Lakewood Public School System is managed by a directly elected school board. [39] The Lakewood City Schools was rated as having "Continuous Improvement" by the Ohio Department of Education in 2013. Lakewood rebuilt or renovated the city's high school, two middle schools and seven elementary schools in a process completed in 2017. [40] The investment was the first major school building program in Lakewood since 1920. The school system is one of the largest employers in the city of Lakewood.

Private schools



Lakewood Park (26182794339).jpg
Lakewood Park gazebo
Lakewood Park (22544217080).jpg
Solstice Steps at Lakewood Park



On October 30, 2015, Lakewood opened its "Solstice Steps" in the northwest corner of the park. The steps are aligned in the direction of sunset on the summer solstice. They are constructed of white concrete blocks in five tiers; each tier has four steps separated by green grass strips. [52]

Other notes


Notable people


Former/current residents


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<span class="mw-page-title-main">Ohio City, Cleveland</span> Neighborhood of Cleveland, Ohio, United States

Ohio City is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Cleveland, Ohio. It is located immediately west of the Cuyahoga River.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Kamm's Corners</span> Neighborhood of Cleveland, Ohio, United States

Kamm's Corners is a neighborhood on the West Side of Cleveland, Ohio. It is bounded by the streetcar suburb of Lakewood to the north, the Rocky River Reservation of the Cleveland Metroparks and the suburbs of Rocky River and Fairview Park to the west, the New York Central Railroad tracks to the east, and Puritas Road to the south. Kamm's Corners Plaza and Warren Village are the major retail centers of the neighborhood. According to the 2019 U.S. census estimate, the neighborhood has the highest concentration of Irish Americans in Cleveland and Cuyahoga County.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Ohio State Route 254</span>

State Route 254 is a 17.15 miles (27.60 km) east–west state route in northern Ohio. The route begins at State Route 57 in Lorain and ends at U.S. Route 20 in Lakewood. SR 254 intersects Interstate 90 twice, both times near its endpoints. State Route 254 is known as Detroit Road for most of its routing, and as North Ridge Road at its western end.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">U.S. Route 20 in Ohio</span>

U.S. Route 20 is a United States Numbered Highway that runs from Newport, Oregon to Boston, Massachusetts. Within the state of Ohio, the route runs from the Indiana border near Edon to the Pennsylvania border at Conneaut. The route passes through rural areas west of Toledo, and passes through Public Square in Cleveland. It is one of 9 other routes to enter downtown Cleveland at Public Square, and it serves some of Cleveland's northeastern suburbs.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Demographics of Cleveland</span>

The demographics of Cleveland have fluctuated throughout the city's history. From its founding in 1796, the city's population grew to 261,353 by 1890, and to 796,841 by 1920, making it the fifth largest city in the United States at the time. By 1930, the population rose to 900,429 and, after World War II, it reached 914,808. Due to various historical factors including deindustrialization, suburbanization, and urban sprawl, Cleveland's population began decreasing in the 1960s. By 1970, the city's population was 750,903. By 1980, it was 573,822 and it had lost its position as one of the top 10 largest cities in the U.S. By 2020, the population had further fallen to 372,624. Beginning in 2018, the city's population began to flatten, after decades of decline. Additionally, between 2010 and 2020, several neighborhoods within Cleveland saw a significant population increase, most notably Downtown, but also University Circle and several West Side neighborhoods.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">West Park, Cleveland</span> Historical area of Cleveland, Ohio, United States

West Park is a historical area on the West Side of Cleveland, Ohio. Once an independent municipality, it was annexed by Cleveland after a referendum in 1923. The area covers 12.5 square miles and is bounded by West 117th Street to the east, the Rocky River Valley to the west, Brookpark Road to the South, and the streetcar suburb of Lakewood to the north. The Cleveland City Planning Commission traditionally divides West Park into four neighborhoods: Jefferson, Kamm's Corners, Bellaire–Puritas, and Hopkins.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Geiger's</span>

Geiger's is a multi-unit retailer in Northeast Ohio. Founded in 1932 by W. Charles "Charley" Geiger Sr., the company markets men's and women's clothing and activewear, shoes, ski and snowboard equipment and accessories, sporting goods and tailored men's clothing at its main store and headquarters in Lakewood, Ohio, and stores in Chagrin Falls, Ohio and downtown Cleveland, Ohio.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Union–Miles Park</span> Neighborhood of Cleveland, Ohio, United States

Union–Miles Park is a neighborhood on the East Side of Cleveland, Ohio, in the United States. The neighborhood draws its name from Union Avenue, and Miles Park in its far southwest corner.

Superior Avenue is the main wide thoroughfare and part of U.S. Route 6 in Downtown Cleveland, the largest and most populated city of Northeast Ohio. Superior runs through the central hub of Cleveland, Public Square. However, the only traffic that can go through the square is bus, bike, and pedestrian transportation. In 2016, the city of Cleveland completed renovation of the Public Square green space and it was decided that no civilian vehicular traffic should be allowed to traverse the park area. Public Square is the "hub" because all of the main streets in downtown jut out from this central greenery. To the east and west, Superior, to the north and south Ontario Street as all the north-south roads are Streets in Cleveland (which goes back to the 1906 Street Plan Decision, and diagonally to the southwest, Euclid Avenue.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Transportation in Cleveland</span>

The transportation system of Cleveland is a network that includes several modes of transportation including sidewalks, roads, public transit, bicycle paths and regional and international airports.