The Cleveland Foundation, presenting sponsor of Week Six “The Future of Cities,” in partnership with The City Club of Cleveland, will be putting a cherry on top of its five-day dialogue as it hosts a “wrap-up” session at 3:30 p.m. August 5 in Smith Wilkes Hall.
Dan Moulthrop, CEO of The City Club of Cleveland and moderator of “Fred Talks” held Monday through Thursday in the Athenaeum Hotel Parlor, sees the event as a final opportunity for Chautauquans to ask questions and tie-up any loose ends.
“You go to an event, so many lectures, [and] your question might not get asked,” Moulthrop said. “But this session, we’re going to give everybody a chance to really discuss with one another what they’ve learned and what ideas they want to take back to their hometowns.”
The lens of this week’s Cleveland Foundation-hosted “Fred Talks” has largely focused on the urban issues of the city of Cleveland and the Greater Cleveland Area. But Matt Ewalt, associate director of education and youth services, also saw them as a launchpad in bringing back those matters to any hometown.
“Whether it be in issues of inclusivity to environmental sustainably to the role of the arts to education, it’s done in a way that those participating can leave feeling a sense of ownership of that work,” Ewalt said.
Ewalt said today’s session will work to encourage a deeper dive into the globalization and localization of the examined perspectives in a week of lectures, conversations and interactions.
And with the implementation of the “Fred Talks,” invoking an “urban laboratory” of sorts, Moulthrop hoped over the week audiences would look to embracing the old city tradition while generating and spreading practical and sustainable innovations.
“There’s a lot of really exciting rebirth happening with downtown development,” Moulthrop said. “And incrementally they’re expanding that economic impact to the neighborhoods, and into the communities, and into places that actually need it most.”
Connectivity has been an important feature in growing cities, both physically and metaphorically, Moulthrop said. He hopes Chautauquans use the session to build those bridges and ask their questions, whether they concern unequal distributions of wealth, the role of art, public transit or the construction of one of the first freshwater, offshore wind farms in North America. Either way, Moulthrop believes those ideas are translational to any urban metropolis.
“Most of us who are from Cleveland feel that Cleveland is unique,” Moulthrop said. “But the reality is we’re going through a lot of the same struggles of these sort of post-industrial Midwestern cities that are remaking themselves for a changing economy. There are somethings that Cleveland does better than other places, but there are also some things that we can learn.”
Visit chqfutureofcities.com for details. For more information about the Cleveland Foundation, visit clevelandfoundation.org.