As population flees Cleveland and the inner-ring suburbs, Whitehead argued that fixed expenses remain – without the resources to pay for them.
“What this means for our core asset, our central city, is that you’ve got all these fixed expenses and the demand has gone away,” explained Whitehead. “If you lose population, those fixed costs don’t just disappear.”
African-Americans comprised 15.5% of Cleveland's population in 1950.
Beyond ‘White Flight’: What The History of One Cleveland Neighborhood Can Teach Us About Race and Housing Inequality. (Belt Magazine, 5/31/2017)
Lee-Harvard is a ‘suburb in the city’ – one of several outlying neighborhoods fitting that description that lie within Cleveland’s municipal boundaries. Most of Talford Avenue’s initial residents were Czechs, Italians, Hungarians, Poles, and Jews who moved from closer in, identifiably ethnic neighborhoods – like Mount Pleasant, Corlett, and Glenville – chasing a more affordable version of the suburban lifestyle to be had in Shaker Heights, Maple Heights, and Garfield Heights. Many were young families striving after this newly-available version of middle-class respectability. Some of the men were veterans of World War II who now worked as skilled tradesmen or small proprietors.
In July 1953, Wendell and Genevieve Stewart, an African American couple, purchased the house at 15508 Talford, touching off a furor that challenged Cleveland’s reputation for relatively placid race relations.
No city is an island. The current estimated population of the Cleveland metropolitan area is 2,058,844, which is down 0.9% from 2010. The metro area population peaked in 1970.
The disappearing cities:
Baltimore, Maryland. (12/31/2018)
Detroit, Michigan. (1/1/2019)
St. Louis, Missouri. (1/2/2018)