Document Type


Publication Date


Research Center

Center for Community Planning and Development


As the first step in establishing an economic development committee under a new mayoral administration, the City of Olmsted Falls worked with the Center for Community Planning and Development at the Levin College of Urban Affairs, Cleveland State University, to prepare an analysis of market strengths and weaknesses for retail, office, housing and lodging in the City’s historic downtown area. This study was performed by economic development student Kirby Date, who is also a professional planner and coordinator of the Community Planning Program at the Levin College. In addition to the market study, a downtown survey of visitors and residents, an online survey of merchants, and merchant interviews, were conducted. Meetings were held with a Market Study Committee, a subgroup of the new Economic Development Committee, to review and discuss findings at key points throughout the study.

It is important to note that while standard retail was evaluated, the focus of this study is on defining specific retail, office and lodging niches typical of small towns and main streets. The emphasis is on local ownership, management and service, and the role that local businesses can play in downtown economic development.