Monday, January 07, 2013


As another sad event within the locally highly-publicized drama associated with Cleveland's Horseshoe Casino's complete disregard of local history, it would appear that the casino is once again about to achieve another "victory" via the upcoming demolition of the historic Stanley Block, the final historic building that has stood in the way of their occupation of the entire block southeast of the intersection of Ontario and Prospect avenues.  What makes this loss especially painful is the fact that the casino didn't have to lift a finger to make this happen -- all it took was the other nemesis of Historic Preservation -- conscious neglect of the owner of a historic building.  Literally the sole surviving pre-1880s structure in the downtown area outside of the Warehouse District, the Stanley Block is actually two structures.  The northernmost building was built in 1870 for Thomas Quinlin, and the southernmost two-thirds was built in 1871 for George Stanley.  In 1874, Stanley acquired the Quinlin building, and, since then, the whole has been known as the Stanley Block.  Only partially-owned by the casino, the other owners refused to give their permission to have the structure destroyed.  Unfortunately, their apparent total lack of financial resources (or unwillingness to spend them) caused the building's already-severely neglected condition to deteriorate even more.  The recent "superstorm" added further damage that brought it to a state condemnable by the City.  It is likely to be gone by the time you read this.