WBEZ | Cleveland http://www.wbez.org/tags/cleveland Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en $7.3 million OKed for downtown ‘bus rapid transit’ http://www.wbez.org/story/story/city-devotes-73-million-downtown-brt-96580 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2012-February/2012-02-21/BRT_Flickr_.jpg" alt="" /><p><p><img alt="Transmilenio" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/insert-image/2012-February/2012-02-20/Transmilenio.jpg" style="margin: 9px 18px 6px 1px; float: left; width: 374px; height: 247px;" title="Bogotá, Colombia, has the world’s most advanced bus-rapid-transit system. (flickr/Oscar Amaya)" />Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel&rsquo;s administration has decided to channel more than $7.3&nbsp;million in tax increment financing toward a &ldquo;bus rapid transit&rdquo; line downtown, according to transportation and economic-development officials.</p><p>The money will combine with an announced $24.6&nbsp;million from the Federal Transit Administration to speed up trips between Union Station, the Ogilvie Transportation Center, several Chicago Transit Authority lines, Streeterville and Navy Pier.</p><p>&ldquo;About 50&nbsp;percent of the commuters who come to work every day in Chicago&rsquo;s central business district arrive by bus or train,&rdquo; said Peter Skosey, vice president of the Metropolitan Planning Council, a nonprofit group working on the project. &ldquo;If they&rsquo;re getting off at those Metra stations in the West Loop, it&rsquo;s quite a hike over to North Michigan Avenue or even just to State Street. So this really facilitates the use of transit for downtown Chicago.&rdquo;</p><p>Bus rapid transit, known as BRT, delivers many benefits of rail at a fraction of the cost. The most advanced BRT systems have sprung up in Bogotá, Colombia; Guangzhou, China; Johannesburg, South Africa; and Ahmedabad, India.</p><p>BRT remains largely unknown in the United States. Modest systems are running in Cleveland, Los Angeles, Pittsburgh, Las Vegas and Eugene, Oregon.</p><p>In 2008, Mayor Richard M. Daley&rsquo;s administration said it was moving on a BRT pilot project. But the city bungled an application for $153&nbsp;million in federal funding for it.</p><p>Emanuel&rsquo;s mayoral transition plan last year promised a &ldquo;full bus rapid transit pilot&rdquo; within three years. The pilot, according to the plan, will include &ldquo;dedicated bus lanes, signal preemption, prepaid boarding or on-board fare verification, multiple entry and exits points on the buses, limited stops, and street-level boarding.&rdquo;</p><p>The Chicago Department of Transportation is keeping lips tight about its design of the downtown line, known as both the &ldquo;East-West Transit Corridor&rdquo; and &ldquo;Central Loop BRT.&rdquo; It&rsquo;s not clear the design will include many of the timesavers listed in Emanuel&rsquo;s plan. A CDOT plan announced in 2010 would remove cars from some traffic lanes, rig key stoplights to favor the buses, improve sidewalks, install bicycle lanes and build specially branded bus stops equipped with GPS-powered &ldquo;next bus&rdquo; arrival signs.</p><p>The CTA, meanwhile, has a separate $1.6&nbsp;million federal grant to plan BRT options along a 21-mile stretch of Western Avenue. Another $11&nbsp;million from the feds is funding bus improvements this year along the South Side&rsquo;s Jeffrey Boulevard. That line, though billed as BRT, will lack many features for speeding up trips.</p></p> Tue, 21 Feb 2012 11:56:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/story/story/city-devotes-73-million-downtown-brt-96580 Gas drilling could take air out of offshore wind http://www.wbez.org/content/gas-drilling-could-take-air-out-offshore-wind <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-November/2011-11-08/Wind_Farm_D36.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>I understand the power of Lake Erie wind as soon we’re out past the breakwaters of Cleveland Harbor. The waves make our 74-foot tugboat bob like a rubber toy in my preschooler’s bath tub.</p><p>Before long, I’m sweating and looking for a place to heave.</p><p>Right next to me, Bill Mason seems to be enjoying the ride. In fact, he wants to show me a spot where the wind is even stronger. “Where we’re headed is to an anemometer,” Mason says, mispronouncing the instrument’s name. “It’s been measuring the wind speeds since, I think, 2007. So I know we have good wind.”</p><p>Mason doesn’t know all the particulars about wind energy. But, as the Cuyahoga County prosecutor, he knows a lot about Northeast Ohio. Since taking office in 1999, Mason has seen about a 100,000 manufacturing jobs disappear from the area.</p><p>Installing a handful of wind turbines offshore could spark a revival, Mason says, changing Cleveland’s image from a deindustrialized ghost town to “a green city on the blue lake.”</p><p><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/insert-image/2011-November/2011-11-09/RS4522_Wind_Farm_A28-scr.jpg" style="width: 275px; height: 184px; margin-left: 0px; margin-right: 18px; float: left;" title="Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Bill Mason says putting turbines in Lake Erie could revive the city. (Front and Center/Bridget Caswell)">Mason has been promoting the wind-farm idea for seven years. In 2009, he helped form a quasi-public group, the Lake Erie Energy Development Corporation, to turn the idea into reality. Representing Cleveland and four counties along the lake, LEEDCo has held dozens of community meetings. It has secured an option for nine square miles of the lake. It has studied possible impacts on wildlife. And it has begun work on designs and permits.</p><p>Mason tells me Cleveland could help build offshore wind farms throughout the Great Lakes. He points to the city’s proximity to rail lines, deep-water port facilities and manufacturers. He says companies in the area could retool to make parts and supplies ranging from transmission cables to ice-resistant blade coating. The wind-farm supporters commissioned a study that says their project could lead to 15,000 new Ohio jobs within two decades.</p><p>The supply chain could include Lincoln Electric, which makes welding equipment in Euclid, a suburb northeast of Cleveland. Lincoln Electric is already getting a taste of wind-energy generation since installing a 443-foot-tall turbine this year to help power the company’s main plant.</p><p>Driving up the lakeshore, I can see the three rotor blades spinning from miles away. On a windy day, the tips go 160 miles an hour, the company tells me. But I can’t hear any sound from the turbine until I’m within a stone’s throw. Looking straight up at the blades, I notice a subtle swoosh as each one passes.</p><p><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/insert-image/2011-November/2011-11-09/RS4525_Wind_Farm_D36-scr.jpg" style="width: 275px; height: 183px; float: right; margin-left: 15px; margin-right: 4px;" title="Lincoln Electric’s Seth Mason says his company’s new turbine provides a case study for the offshore project. (Front and Center/Bridget Caswell)">The turbine has given a lot of local people—from regulators to engineers to truck drivers—their first contact with a wind project. Lincoln Electric energy manager Seth Mason (no relation to the prosecutor) says this experience could help with the offshore installation, which would be just a few miles away.</p><p>“You basically have the same wind regime [and] you’re basically going to have the same amount of migratory birds at this longitude,” Mason says. “So I think it provides a case study for the next machine.”</p><p>It’s not just local boosters who think a Lake Erie wind farm could revive Northeast Ohio. Christopher Hart, the U.S. Department of Energy’s offshore wind chief, sees it that way too. “If a place like Cleveland is able to establish the demonstration project and then is able to leverage that demonstration project into a larger position in the industry, this could really, really have an impact on the local economy.”</p><p>Hart tells me Cleveland has the best shot at installing the first Great Lakes wind farm. But he points to a huge barrier: “Given the current technology, given the current regulatory structure, offshore wind doesn’t make economic sense.”</p><p>DOE calculations suggest it’s more than twice as expensive to generate electricity from offshore wind as from coal, natural gas or nuclear fission. The New York Power Authority pointed to costs this fall when it pulled the plug on some proposed Great Lakes turbines.</p><p> <style type="text/css"> div .inline { width: 290px; float: left; margin-right: 19px; margin-left: 3px; clear: left; font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif; font-size: 14px; line-height: 1em; background-repeat: no-repeat; background-position: 0pt 5px; padding-left: 3px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; }div .inlineContent { border-top: 1px dotted rgb(170, 33, 29); margin-bottom: 5px; margin-top: 2px; }ul { margin-left: 15px; }li { font-family: Arial,Helvetica,sans-serif; font-size: 12px; line-height: 1em; background-repeat: no-repeat; background-position: 0pt 5px; padding-left: 3px; margin-bottom: 0.5em; }</style> </p><div class="inline"><div class="inlineContent"><a href="/frontandcenter"><img alt="" src="http://www.wbez.org/sites/default/files/story/insert-image/2011-November/2011-11-06/FC-logo-sm_0.jpg" style="width: 280px; height: 38px;" title=""></a><ul><li><strong><a href="http://www.wbez.org/story/plant-entrepreneurs-turn-waste-jobs-93782"><span style="color: rgb(255, 0, 0);">ViDEO:</span></a> <a href="http://www.wbez.org/story/plant-entrepreneurs-turn-waste-jobs-93782">Plant turns waste into jobs</a></strong></li><li><a href="http://www.wbez.org/imadeajob"><strong><span style="color: rgb(255, 0, 0);">INTERACT: </span>Made a Job? Tell us about it.</strong></a></li><li><a href="http://www.wbez.org/story/can-milwaukee-become-silicon-valley-water-93835"><strong>The Silicon Valley of water</strong>:<strong> Milwaukee?</strong></a></li></ul></div><div class="inlineContent">&nbsp;</div></div><p>That frustrates Chris Wisseman, who leads a consortium called Freshwater Wind that LEEDCo chose last year to develop Cleveland’s offshore wind farm. “All we’re talking about here is a new technology that looks like it’s got the ability to be very cost-effective inside of a decade,” he says.</p><p>The construction will run about $130 million, Wisseman tells me. The financing will be tricky because few utilities are eager to buy electricity that is so expensive. The only purchaser on board so far is municipally owned Cleveland Public Power, which has agreed to buy a quarter of the wind-farm output.</p><p>So LEEDCo is pushing for Ohio to <em>compel</em> utilities to buy the electricity and pass along the cost to customers—a process known as rate recovery. If the plan covered just northern Ohio, Wisseman says, business and residential customers would each pay an extra $0.40 a month.</p><p>The area’s big utility, Akron-based First Energy, says it won’t take a stand on that rate recovery until it sees a proposal. The Ohio Association of Manufacturers tells me it will probably go along with the plan if it doesn’t hit electricity-intensive companies hard.</p><p><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/insert-image/2011-November/2011-11-08/Kasich.jpg" style="width: 275px; height: 268px; margin-top: 5px; margin-left: 0px; margin-right: 18px; float: left;" title="Ohio Gov. John Kasich isn’t saying whether he’ll support rate recovery for the offshore wind project. (AP/File)">But rate recovery won’t get far without support from Gov. John Kasich. He appoints the members of the Public Utilities Commission of Ohio, which regulates the state’s electricity rates. And his Republican Party controls both houses of the state legislature.</p><p>At an energy forum Kasich’s office organized this fall, the governor didn’t leave any doubt that his energy focus would be an Appalachian rock layer called Utica Shale. In Ohio, that shale holds a lot of natural gas. To free up the fuel, companies such as Oklahoma-based Chesapeake Energy Corp. want to drill thousands of horizontal wells and inject pressurized fluids—a process known as fracking.</p><p>An industry-funded study says the fracking could create more than 200,000 jobs in Ohio over the next four years. The potential boom is keeping Kasich’s staff busy. “We have had 129 separate meetings—5 regional meetings, 78 with business associations, 46 meetings with oil-and-gas division experts—all across Ohio,” the governor said at the forum.</p><p>At the same time, contaminated groundwater in nearby Pennsylvania is giving fracking a bad name. Kasich promises environmental safeguards for Ohio.</p><p>The governor says he’ll also promote renewable energy efforts. So, when I catch up with him, I ask whether those will include Cleveland’s offshore wind project.</p><p>“There is a place for renewables,” Kasich replies. “But we have to be very clear: They’re very expensive. That doesn’t mean there aren’t opportunities in the state. It doesn’t mean that over time they [won’t] become less expensive. But specific projects have to be looked at very, very carefully.”</p><p><img alt="" class="caption" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/insert-image/2011-November/2011-11-09/RS4524_Wind_Farm_C26-scr.jpg" style="width: 275px; height: 184px; margin-left: 15px; margin-right: 2px; margin-top: 5px; float: right;" title="A tugboat captain who knows about Lake Erie wind recalls cleaning a seasick crewmate with a hose. (Front and Center/Bridget Caswell)">I press Kasich, asking whether he will support the rate recovery proposed for the offshore project. He declines to answer.</p><p>Another Ohio Republican is talking about that rate recovery. State Sen. Kris Jordan, who represents suburbs north of Columbus, tells me it’s a bad idea. “I just don’t believe—when we have more affordable, more ready energy sources—that government should be subsidizing" an offshore wind farm.</p><p>Back on the Lake Erie tugboat, the vessel’s captain notices my pale color. He says he once had to clean off a seasick crewmate with a hose.</p><p>Bill Mason, the prosecutor behind the proposed wind farm, agrees I’ve seen enough of the lake. On the way back to port, he shakes his head at the thought of a natural-gas boom tripping up his project.</p><p>“We don’t know how much energy is going to be produced from this fracking,” Mason says. “We don’t know the environmental damage that possibly could happen from it. And we don’t know what it’s going to cost, if there is damage, for that recovery. If we take that step down that road, won’t it be nice to know that we have other alternatives such as the wind industry out here on the Great Lakes?”</p><p>And wouldn’t it be nice, Mason adds, if the center of that industry were Cleveland?</p><p>&nbsp;</p><h2>Great Lakes wind projects struggle for footing</h2><p>Offshore wind-energy advocates face tall hurdles in the Great Lakes, but some projects are advancing. WBEZ’s Maham Khan brings us these snapshots.</p><script type="text/javascript" src="http://public.tableausoftware.com/javascripts/api/viz_v1.js"></script><div class="tableauPlaceholder" style="width: 554px; height: 769px;"><noscript><a href="#"><img alt="Offshore wind " src="http:&#47;&#47;public.tableausoftware.com&#47;static&#47;images&#47;Gr&#47;GreatLakesoffshorewindfarmproposalsandstudies&#47;Offshorewind&#47;1_rss.png" style="height: 100%; width: 100%; border: none" /></a></noscript><object class="tableauViz" style="display: none;" width="554" height="769"><param name="host_url" value="http%3A%2F%2Fpublic.tableausoftware.com%2F"><param name="name" value="GreatLakesoffshorewindfarmproposalsandstudies/Offshorewind"><param name="tabs" value="no"><param name="toolbar" value="yes"><param name="static_image" value="http://public.tableausoftware.com/static/images/Gr/GreatLakesoffshorewindfarmproposalsandstudies/Offshorewind/1.png"><param name="animate_transition" value="yes"><param name="display_static_image" value="yes"><param name="display_spinner" value="yes"><param name="display_overlay" value="yes"></object></div><div style="width: 554px; height: 22px; padding: 0px 10px 0px 0px; color: black; font: 8pt verdana,helvetica,arial,sans-serif;"><div style="float: right; padding-right: 8px;">&nbsp;</div></div></p> Wed, 09 Nov 2011 11:11:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/content/gas-drilling-could-take-air-out-offshore-wind Rahm vows bus rapid transit, but can he deliver? http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-08-23/rahm-promises-brt-can-he-deliver-90926 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/segment/photo/2011-August/2011-08-23/Transmilenio.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>All this week, WBEZ is looking at <a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/first-100-rahm-emanuels-first-100-days-chicago-mayor" target="_blank">Rahm Emanuel’s first 100 days as Chicago mayor</a>.</p><p>One of Emanuel’s pledges is to push for the creation of the city’s first bus-rapid-transit line. The idea behind BRT is to deliver the benefits of rail at a fraction of the cost. BRT shortens travel times through dedicated bus lanes, pre-paid boarding that’s level with station platforms, and traffic signals that favor the buses.</p><p>WBEZ’s West Side bureau reporter <a href="http://www.wbez.org/staff/chip-mitchell" target="_blank">Chip Mitchell</a> gives us a progress report on Emanuel’s ambitious plan.<br> &nbsp;</p></p> Tue, 23 Aug 2011 16:49:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-08-23/rahm-promises-brt-can-he-deliver-90926 Runaway algae returns to Lake Erie http://www.wbez.org/frontandcenter/2011-06-23/runaway-algae-returns-lake-erie-88249 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/frontandcenter/photo/2011-06-23/88249/2009 Algal Bloom Stone Lab 001 (8).jpg" alt="" /><p><p><strong>READ: Toxic Water, Part 1,&nbsp; </strong><strong><a href="http://www.wbez.org/frontandcenter/2011-06-22/anniversary-cuyahoga-fires-igniting-environmental-movement-88161">Anniversary of Cuyahoga fires igniting environmental movement </a></strong></p><p>Runaway algae blooms that killed fish and fouled beaches in the 1970's have been making a comeback on Lake Erie – and they're showing up now in other Great Lakes.&nbsp; Until recently, they didn't get much attention, but the problems have been getting worse.&nbsp; After years of research, scientists think they've finally pinpointed the source of the blooms.&nbsp; But they worry it won't be as easy to fix this time around.</p><p>There's no sign yet of algae in the muddy water here at the mouth of the Maumee River in Toledo on western Lake Erie.&nbsp; But it's late spring and Tom Bridgeman knows it's coming, “It's getting worse, the last couple years have been really bad.”</p><p>Bridgeman is a researcher at the University of Toledo's Lake Erie Center. He's been watching the algae come back every year since he first saw the satellite image of a massive algae bloom in 2003. “It started near the mouth of the Maumee River, so several hundred square kilometers was covered by this bloom,” &nbsp;says Bridgeman, “It looked like a scum of bright green paint on the surface of the water.&nbsp; And as boats went through it...you could see them cutting trails through this sort of green scum on the surface.”</p><p>The scum is Microcystis, a toxic form of blue-green algae that can give you cramps and diarrhea if you swallow it and can also cause a nasty skin rash.&nbsp; The toxins accumulate in the livers of fish, but Bridgeman says so far fish don't seem to be affected, nor are people who eat them.&nbsp; But the algae does have an impact on Toledo's drinking water, which comes from Lake Erie. “I've heard that the city of Toledo spends an extra 3 or 4-thousand dollars per day in extra filtration costs during an algal bloom,” says Bridgeman.</p><p>Bridgeman says it's wreaking havoc with sport fishing and tourism on the lake.&nbsp; And more people are staying away.&nbsp; Bridgeman says the algae smells even worse than it looks, “Especially when it washes up on shore and starts to dry out and decompose, it really has sort of a fishy, you know, garbage-y sort of odor.”</p><p>Bridgeman's research is crucial to helping predict the blooms and their severity.&nbsp;&nbsp; Many forms of algae are a natural and necessary nutrient for fish, but they can get out of control when their food source is ramped up by human activity.&nbsp;</p><p>In the last few years toxic algae has also been showing up along beaches in Lake Ontario.&nbsp; And in Lake Michigan and Lake Huron, thick blankets of non-toxic, nuisance algae often coat the shoreline.&nbsp; Scientist and educator Jeff Reutter is head of Ohio Sea Grant. &nbsp;He's spent his entire career working on Lake Erie issues.&nbsp; Standing near Cleveland's Lake Erie harbor, Reutter remembers when algae as thick as pea soup bloomed in the lake in the 1970's., “The breakwall here, a little bit east of where we're standing, someone had painted on the breakwall, 'Help me, I'm dying' and signed it 'Lake Erie.'”</p><p>Reutter says in fresh water, phosphorus is the nutrient that algae needs to grow.&nbsp; Too much causes rampant blooms. Reutter says cutbacks of phosphorus from laundry detergents and sewage treatment plants nearly a generation ago seemed to solve the problem.&nbsp; Reutter believes the return of algae blooms is a sign that Lake Erie is once again sick, “The big concern I have is that I feel like I started with Lake Erie really bad.&nbsp; Huge improvements brought about by the mid-1980's.&nbsp; And unfortunately, since 1995, it's been going downhill ever since.”</p><p>Reutter says the mid-90's was when dead zones - much like those in the Gulf Mexico - started showing up again in Lake Erie.&nbsp; Dead zones form when decaying algae blooms use up oxygen in the water, forcing fish and other wildife to migrate – or die.&nbsp; So scientists like Pete Richards, a researcher at the National Water Quality Research Center at Ohio's Heidelberg University, have been working to solve the phosphorus mystery.&nbsp; Richards thinks he's found the answer. “When 80-percent of the land use in a watershed is agriculture, it's almost inevitable that a major source of the phosphorus loading is going to be from the agricultural fields,” says Richards.</p><p>Richards worked on the investigating team with the Lake Erie Phosphorus Task Force, which last year released new recommendations about how and when farmers should fertilize their fields “In some senses, the fixes are obvious.&nbsp; You don't do it in the fall, you get it underground, rather than on the surface.&nbsp; But for every obvious fix, there's a good reason why it doesn't get done,” says Richards. He says he task force recommends fertilizing in the spring, when plants will use it up.</p><p>At a farm about 50-miles south of Lake Erie, dairy farmer Ted Sonnenberg says it isn't always possible to follow the recommendations – like this spring when he saw record-breaking rainfall, “There aren't enough good days in the spring.&nbsp; We have not been able to touch the fields behind the dairy, because they're too wet.”</p><p>A recent study by Ohio State University found 30-percent of Ohio's farmland has too much phosphorus.&nbsp; With federal money from the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative, Sonnenberg&nbsp; is reducing the phosphorus output of his dairy by building new ponds to store the manure.</p><p>Sonnenberg is trying to be more sustainable, but many farmers aren't.&nbsp; And some researchers admit they're not sure that voluntary compliance from farmers will be enough to reduce the phosphorus that's feeding Lake Erie algae.&nbsp; There are other things that may help.&nbsp; Last year, 16-states, including Ohio and six other Great Lakes states, passed bans on phosphorus in dishwasher detergents.&nbsp; And several manufacturers, like Scotts, have removed phosphorus from their lawncare products.</p><p>For now, algae blooms will likely continue to plague Lake Erie and its shoreline.&nbsp; And that worries Toledo resident Alli Weber whenever she swims here at Maumee Bay State Park, a few miles east of Toledo.&nbsp; Weber and her 3-year old daughter Lillian enjoy cooling off in Lake Erie, but not when smelly mats of algae wash ashore.<br> <br> “I don't like it,” says Webber, “ I don't know if it's safe.&nbsp; Especially when I bring her, because she, like, touches it and I don't like that.”</p><p>This summer, Ohio health officials unveiled a new website that tells swimmers and boaters where algae blooms are located and how to avoid getting sick from them. Scientists say if they can figure out solutions, the lakes will recover quickly.&nbsp; But if the blooms get worse, the impacts on human health and the environment could grow.&nbsp;</p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Thu, 23 Jun 2011 15:53:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/frontandcenter/2011-06-23/runaway-algae-returns-lake-erie-88249 Fashion Incubators Pop Up in the Midwest http://www.wbez.org/story/fashion-incubators-pop-midwest-85527 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/story/photo/2011-April/2011-04-22/DSC00094.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>There’s a shop on Michigan Avenue in Chicago that has exclusive designs and it’s only <a href="http://www.shop900.com/events/302">open</a> until Saturday. But you might not have heard of any of the designers. That’s because they’re getting their start through a fashion incubator. These programs are popping up across the Midwest, with various degrees of success.</p><p>WBEZ’s Erica Hunter, an expert on the <a href="episode-segments/no-project-runway-these-designers-are-%C3%A2%E2%82%AC%C5%93in%C3%A2%E2%82%AC%C2%9D-all-season">Chicago fashion scene</a>, provided <a href="http://www.changinggears.info/2011/04/21/fashion-incubators-pop-up-in-the-midwest/">Changing Gears</a> with a look at fashion incubators.</p><p>In most cases, a fashion incubator is a non-profit organization that offers workspace, resources, mentoring and sometimes a curriculum for aspiring designers.</p><p>One Midwest city that’s having much success is Chicago. For the past three years, Chicago’s fashion scene has been bustling with trunk and fashion shows displaying clothes by local designers and much of this buzz is because of the success of Chicago’s fashion incubator which began in 2008.</p><p>"Our programming has been so successful because of the support of the community to be totally honest," said Lara Miller, director of <a href="http://www.chicagofashionincubator.org/">Chicago’s Fashion Incubator.</a></p><p>"Chicago as a fashion industry is under the radar manufacturing hub. People don’t realize how much manufacturing is actually here. But there’s quite a lot of that available to young designers," she said.</p><p>Donaldo Smith is one of those young designers who just finished his year as a designer in residence at Chicago’s incubator. In addition to helping him gain visibility, he said the incubator helped him learn the business side of the fashion industry to help build his contemporary men’s line, <a href="http://www.killiangui.blogspot.com/">Killian Gui.</a></p><p>"I had done a couple garments in the past, but I didn’t have a full brand. I know the incubator really helped me to turn it from a hobby into a business," Smith said.</p><p>Stephanie Kuhr also recently finished her year at the incubator. She was a little unsure about costing structure for <a href="http://dotties-delights.com/">Dottie’s Delights,</a> her line of vintage lingerie and foundation wear for women.</p><p>Kuhr said the incubator helped her create a budget and stay within it.</p><p>"It’s probably what makes or breaks a new designer because it’s a big question, it’s a huge deal to make sure that you’re paying yourself enough and covering all of your cost indirect and direct," she said.</p><p>Because fashion is a global industry, designers don’t necessarily have to be in places like New York, Paris or Milan to be successful. Because of this, Miller said people in different cities around the Midwest and elsewhere have reached out to her for advice and guidance about starting an incubator in their cities.</p><p>But Chicago isn’t the only place with these incubators. Around 2005, Detroit made an attempt at a fashion incubator, but by 2007 it was closed.</p><p>Sarah Lapinski who was a contributing designer to the Detroit incubator said the right infrastructure wasn’t in place for designers to continue to grow. Aside from location, there was one other major hurdle for Detroit’s incubator: "People don’t really shop in Detroit. It just doesn’t really happen," Lapinski said.</p><p>But there is hope in other Midwest cities, like Cleveland. Valerie Mayen who was a contestant on Season 8 of<a href="http://www.mylifetime.com/shows/project-runway/season-8/designers/valerie-mayen"> Project Runway</a> is the founder of Buzz and Growl, an incubator like program in Cleveland slated to open this summer. The main goal of Buzz and Growl is to provide designers with space and professional equipment.</p><p>Mayen said people associate fashion with runways and overseas production, but for Cleveland that’s not a realistic venture. “We’re hoping that we can to help designers to grow to start their own small businesses that are legitimately providing their full time income.” said Mayen.</p><p>Who knows, maybe some day one of those designers will dress Chicago’s most famous contribution to fashion, First Lady <a href="http://mrs-o.org/">Michelle Obama.</a></p><p><em>Correction: Valerie Mayen was a contestant on Season 8 of Project Runway rather than Season 10 as previously stated.</em></p></p> Fri, 22 Apr 2011 12:07:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/story/fashion-incubators-pop-midwest-85527 The Weekly Guide: How a Clevelander rocks it in Chicago http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-04-01/weekly-guide-how-clevelander-rocks-it-chicago-84588 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/segment/photo/2011-April/2011-04-01/Cleveland.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Who among us hasn’t gotten into some foolishness in our hometown? Maybe that’s why we leave them! Love it or hate it we can all be a bit of a fool about the place that shaped us. For Marah Eakin that place is Cleveland. Eaken’s Chicago City Editor for <a href="http://A.V.%20Club" target="_blank">The A.V. Club</a>. On Saturday, she’ll moderate the <a href="http://www.quimbys.com/blog/2011/04/02/?ec3_listing=events" target="_blank">Cleveland Confidential Book Tour</a> at Quimby's, a panel discussion among a bunch of Cleveland-born writers. On Friday, she was <a href="http://www.wbez.org/series/weeklyguide"><em>The Weekly Guide</em></a> guest and shared her ideas on how a Cleveland native enjoys a weekend in Chicago.</p><p><strong>Marah's List:</strong><br> <br> <strong>FRIDAY:</strong><br> 1. Wear <a href="http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0097815/" target="_blank">Rick Vaughn</a> glasses all day for the Cleveland season opener against the <a href="http://cleveland.indians.mlb.com/schedule/index.jsp?c_id=CLE%20" target="_blank">White Sox</a></p><p>2. Have a Friday fish fry at <a href="http://fishbarchicago.com/" target="_blank">Fish Bar </a><br> <br> <strong>SATURDAY: </strong><br> 1. Fishing in Lake Michigan<br> 2. Eat dinner at <a href="http://www.redapplebuffet.com/" target="_blank">Red Apple Buffet</a>&nbsp;<br> <br> <strong>SUNDAY: </strong><br> 1. <a href="http://www.sebadoh.com/" target="_blank">Sebadoh</a> at <a href="http://www.lincolnhallchicago.com/%20" target="_blank">Lincoln Hall</a></p><p><em>Music Button: Foghat, "Fool For The City", from the CD Fool For the City, (Rhino)</em></p></p> Fri, 01 Apr 2011 14:11:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-04-01/weekly-guide-how-clevelander-rocks-it-chicago-84588 Changing Gears: Cleveland's quiet mayor http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-02-16/changing-gears-clevelands-quiet-mayor-82426 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/Cleveland Mayor jackson_medmart.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The <a target="_blank" href="http://www.changinggears.info/"><em>Changing Gears</em></a> series explores the Midwestern economy took a three-part look at leadership: Tuesday, Kate Davidson reported on how Detroit Mayor Dave Bing is trying to remake his troubled city. On Wednesday's <em>Eight Forty-Eight</em>, <em>Changing Gears</em> looked to another city and another mayor&rsquo;s struggles. As Dan Bobkoff reports, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.city.cleveland.oh.us/CityofCleveland/Home/Government/MayorsOffice">Mayor Frank Jackson </a>of Cleveland is not your your average politician.</p></p> Wed, 16 Feb 2011 17:33:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-02-16/changing-gears-clevelands-quiet-mayor-82426 Changing Gears: Why Detroit must shrink to survive http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-02-15/changing-gears-why-detroit-must-shrink-survive-82357 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org/city of detroit_getty.JPG" alt="" /><p><p>The municipal election is giving Chicagoans the chance to ponder how a new Mayor might shape the future of their city. To provide some food for thought, <a target="_blank" href="http://www.changinggears.info/"><em>Changing Gears</em></a> is looking at the role leaders are playing in the transformation of this region. <br /><br />Reporter Kate Davidson starts things off by looking at the man with perhaps the toughest job of any big city mayor: Dave Bing of Detroit. He has to keep his impoverished city running - &nbsp;while convincing residents Detroit must shrink to survive.<br /><br />In the next part of the series, <em>Changing Gears</em> looks at leadership in Cleveland<b>,</b> where both the mayor and county government have their eyes on the future. <em>Changing Gears</em> is a joint project of<a target="_blank" href="http://www.michiganradio.org/"> Michigan Radio</a>, WBEZ Chicago, and <a target="_blank" href="http://www.ideastream.org/">Ideastream Cleveland</a>.<br /><br />Support for Changing Gears comes from <a target="_blank" href="http://www.cpb.org/">The Corporation for Public Broadcasting</a><b>.</b></p></p> Tue, 15 Feb 2011 15:25:00 -0600 http://www.wbez.org/episode-segments/2011-02-15/changing-gears-why-detroit-must-shrink-survive-82357