In Cleveland's 'second downtown,' jazz once filled the air: Elegant Cleveland
Posted February 05, 2012 in Articles
Author: Evelyn Theiss, Plain Dealer Reporter
These days, University Circle is a hive of construction, filled with cranes and workers building a new Museum of Contemporary Art, a pedestrian plaza and two residential buildings.
But underneath all this new energy in what has long been the cultural center of Cleveland, there's almost a sense of deja vu.
Starting about 80 years ago, this section of the city, known then as Doan's Corners, throbbed with a different kind of activity.
Several movie houses (at the Keith, you could watch two features and a vaudeville show), a huge indoor ice rink, shops and delis drew throngs. Cleveland, then the sixth-largest city in the United States, was vibrant enough that it could support what was widely known as its "second downtown," several miles east of PlayhouseSquare.