Cleveland, Ohio

Cleveland, Ohio

According to, Cleveland is a major city in the state of Ohio in the United States. The city is the capital of Cuyahoga County, the most populous county in the state. The city itself has 368,000 inhabitants, with an agglomeration of 2,076,000 inhabitants (2021).


De Main Avenue Bridge in Cleveland.

According to Mcat-test-centers, Cleveland is located on the south side of the large Lake Erie, on the north coast of Ohio. Located just west of the Pennsylvania border, the city was an important center for heavy industry until the 1960s, particularly in the Cuyahoga Valley. Heavy industry has declined sharply since then, causing the population to drop from 915,000 in 1950 to 390,000 in 2014, at 1900 levels. However, the agglomeration has continued to grow for some time since then, as many people moved away from the central city Cleveland to the many suburbs. In recent years, however, the population of the urban area has also decreased. The urban area is quite large and relatively sparsely populated, due to vacancy and many vacant lots in Cleveland and some suburbs and the sparsely built suburbs. The agglomeration extends for 90 kilometers along Lake Erie, and goes up to 20 kilometers inland, so the agglomeration is quite elongated.

Just south of the metropolitan area is the urban area of the city of Akron. Akron is not directly included in the Cleveland metropolitan area in all cases. Akron is the capital of Summit County, which has a population of 541,000. Just south is the city of Canton, which is part of Cleveland’s Combined Statistical Area (CSA) but has few direct connections to it. Canton is the capital of Stark County, which has a population of 373,000.

Population growth

Population growth by county and city of Cleveland separately. Cleveland is also included in Cuyahoga County. The city of Cleveland reached its peak in the 1950 census, when it had a population of 915,000. The conurbation reached its peak in the 1970 census, when it had a population of 2,312,000.

Year Cleveland Cuyahoga With Geau Lake Lorain Medina agglomeration
1900 382.000 439.000 15.000 22.000 55.000 22.000 553.000
1910 561.000 637.000 15.000 23.000 76.000 24.000 775.000
1920 797.000 943.000 15.000 29.000 91.000 26.000 1.104.000
1930 900.000 1.201.000 15.000 42.000 109.000 30.000 1.397.000
1940 878.000 1.217.000 19.000 50.000 112.000 33.000 1.431.000
1950 915.000 1.390.000 27.000 76.000 148.000 40.000 1.681.000
1960 876.000 1.647.000 48.000 149.000 218.000 63.000 2.125.000
1970 751.000 1.721.000 63.000 197.000 257.000 83.000 2.321.000
1980 574.000 1.498.000 74.000 213.000 275.000 113.000 2.173.000
1990 506.000 1.412.000 81.000 215.000 271.000 122.000 2.101.000
2000 478.000 1.394.000 91.000 228.000 285.000 151.000 2.149.000
2010 397.000 1.280.000 93.000 230.000 301.000 172.000 2.076.000
2020 373.000 1.262.000 95.000 232.000 313.000 183.000 2.085.000
2021 368.000 1.249.000 96.000 232.000 316.000 183.000 2.076.000

Road network

The highway network of the Cleveland area.

Cleveland is a major interchange for road traffic, the Ohio Turnpike, which consists of portions of Interstate 90 and Interstate 80 running through the south of the metropolitan area. I-90 exits shortly before the conurbation and serves downtown Cleveland and the eastern suburbs on Lake Erie. In addition, Interstate 71 from Cincinnati and Columbus terminates in the city, as does Interstate 77 from Akron and Canton.

The southern suburbs are connected to Interstate 80 by Interstate 480. This is also the busiest highway in the agglomeration with 174,000 vehicles per day. Interstate 271 forms a bypass east of the city, connecting I-71 south of Cleveland to I-90 northeast of Cleveland, and is a through traffic link. The short Interstate 490 forms an east-west connection immediately south of downtown.

In addition, there are two minor highways, US 422, which forms an eastern highway, and SR-2, which forms a highway west and east of the city.

Cleveland itself has a disordered grid pattern. The first ring of suburbs around the city also has this, but the other suburbs have a different road pattern without a clear order.

List of freeways

De Detroit-Superior Bridge (US 6 / 20 / 42).

name length first opening last opening max AADT 2013
Medina Freeway 35 km 1959 196x 136.000
Willow Freeway 26 km 195x 1966 100.000
Ohio Turnpike 72 km 1955 1955 ?
Northwest Freeway / Lakeland Freeway 85 km 1935 196x 127.000
Outerbelt Freeway 64 km 196x 1972 168.000
Outerbelt Freeway 67 km 196x 1987 152.000
Troy Lee James Highway 4 km 1990 1990 67.000
Oberlin-Elyria Road 12 km ? ? 25.000
US Highway 422 17 km ? ? 75.000
Amherst Bypass 10 km ? ? 54.000
Shoreway 7 km ? ? 39.000
Lakeland Freeway 31 km ? ? 80.000
State Route 8 10 km 1972 2011 50.000
Jennings Freeway 5 km 1968 1998 70.000
Berea Freeway 3 km 1983 1987 36.000


10 numbered roads converge at Public Square, including US 6, US 20, US 42, US 322, and US 422.

Highway construction in the Cleveland area began in the 1930s as part of the “New Deal” to recover from the Great Recession. The Works Progress Administration’s largest public project was the construction of Memorial Shoreway, Cleveland’s first freeway to run along Lake Erie, today part of I-90 and State Route 2. The first section of this opened in 1936. for traffic between Downtown and 55th Street. In 1941, the highway extended to 140th Street. The construction of the western part of the Shoreway was interrupted by World War II and was ultimately not built in the Lakewood suburb.

In 1944, a master plan for freeways and parkways in Cleveland was drawn up. A radial system was envisaged, with a small ring road around the center of Cleveland and 6 freeways connecting to it. An Outer Belt was also provided, an outer ring, which was later constructed more or less as I-480 and I-271 around Cleveland. However, a planned north-south freeway through East Cleveland has not been constructed.

Construction on I-77 in downtown Cleveland began in 1950 and has since been built southward. State Route 1, a toll road from Columbus to Cleveland, was planned in the 1950s. With the creation of the Interstate Highway system in 1956, this became a toll-free highway, Interstate 71. The highway was then built in the Cleveland area in the late 1950s and early 1960s. An important part opened in 1959 between the airport and the center. From 1959 to 1963, I-90 was built through Cleveland, using the 1930s Shoreway.

Most highways in and around Cleveland were built in the 1950s and 1960s. Cleveland’s eastern bypass, I-271, was completed in 1972. Express lanes were built here in 1998. The construction of two east-west highways through Cleveland was problematic. I-480 was not completed until 1987 because there was a long missing link between I-71 and I-77, passing through the suburb of Parma. The last new highway was I-490, which opened on September 11, 1990.

Canceled plans

In 1978, I-490 was planned as a 10-mile east-west route between I-90 and I-271. This should be the Shaker Freeway. In 1990 the only part of this was opened, a link only 4 kilometers long. A huge stack of I-77 is still a reminder of plans to extend the highway further east. Immediately after the stack, the highway ends at an intersection with traffic lights.

A split from I-71 to State Route 2 west of Downtown Cleveland was planned in the 1960s. The interchange with I-71 has actually been constructed, but is now no more than an exit.

In eastern Cleveland, two north-south highways were planned. The easternmost was a connection from I-480 at Garfield Heights to I-90 near Euclid. This highway would run just west of current I-271. In addition, another shorter north-south highway was planned through East Cleveland to the west. Both highways were never built. From Downtown Cleveland, two freeways to I-271 were provided, running east from downtown. Both routes have not been constructed.


Cleveland is not a city with major traffic problems. Due to the decline in the population, the road network has been considerably expanded in terms of capacity, the pinnacle being the 2×4 I-490 with barely 55,000 vehicles per day. The capacity of this highway is about 175,000 vehicles. The other highways also experience little congestion. This is because there is sufficient capacity and the suburbs have not grown excessively in one direction. The highways are not really busy either, the busiest road has 174,000 vehicles per day on the I-480 at the airport.

Cleveland, Ohio

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