Can Shaker Square’s rescuers come up with compelling new vision for a struggling Cleveland landmark? -

Shaker Square was the latest word in upscale urban innovation when it opened in 1929 as one of America’s first automobile- and transit-oriented shopping centers.

Built by the Van Sweringen brothers, the tycoons who went bust in the Depression, the square featured Georgian Revival-style buildings wrapped in an octagon around a five-acre central landscape. The “square” is bisected by a rapid transit line connecting the suburb of Shaker Heights to the east, and Terminal Tower downtown, to the west, both of which the brothers also built.

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