During the 1930’s, Cleveland was given the nickname “6th City”, due to once being the sixth largest populated city in the U.S. – at 900,429, behind only New York City, Chicago, Philadelphia, Detroit, and Los Angeles. The rise of the manufacturing and steel mill industries facilitated this growth, hitting an all-time high of 914,808 in 1950. But, when those industries started shutting down locally, there began its incredible shrinking decline. Cleveland lost residents at such a rapid pace, over 500k total. Many migrated to the suburbs (activity commonly known as ‘white flight’). But, others left to other regions in Ohio, or packed up and fled the state altogether in search of work when those jobs were lost.
This city became a national headline for all the wrong reasons, becoming the butt of every joke, dubbing the city – The Mistake By The Lake. No other city of its size endured a longer recession than Cleveland, spanning over the next six decades…, but where there is light, there is hope.
“Made In Cleveland” takes an intimate look at Cleveland’s recent rise back, at the infancy of a renaissance. Empty warehouse buildings are being recycled and reused into other work purposes, especially in the west side neighborhoods of Tremont, Ohio City, Hingetown and the Detroit Shoreway’s Gordon Square Arts District (GSAD). Much of the resurgence has been fueled by the art community, as they have transformed vacant buildings into studios and other creative spaces, turning once desolate areas into booming marketplaces, helping to revitalize the local economy with their talents. But is it sustainable?
There may be a heavy focus on the artist and other creative types planned for this film, but there is plans on shining a bright light on the other innovative and inspiring individuals who proudly make Cleveland home, who use their purpose in life to make this city that fell on hard times a great place for others.
Make no mistake about it, “Made In Cleveland” is a love story, with hopes to uncover a model for other struggling cities to follow and get back to greatness again.
Updates will be released as the film goes through production…
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