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Encyclopedia of Cleveland History

CLEVELAND BEAUTIFUL COMMITTEE (CBC)

CLEVELAND BEAUTIFUL COMMITTEE (CBC)

The CLEVELAND BEAUTIFUL COMMITTEE (CBC) was founded in 1971 by Samuel Abrams to focus attention on the beautification of downtown Cleveland. The Cleveland Beautiful Committee instituted an annual awards program to recognize businesses, hospitals, hotels, and inner city residences for their landscaping efforts. This program lasted into the late 1980s. In the spring of 1975, CBC's first major public project focused on Public Square. The project was the purchase placement and planting with annuals of 25 substantial concrete planters arranged to unify the quadrants of the square. CBC then turned its energy to the beautification of vacant lots around the city. Lots were cleaned and planted with trees, bushes, and flowers. "Flower Power" was another of CBC's programs. It was conceived to form a coordinated approval to downtown flower planting. This was to achieve maximum visual impact.

Throughout its existence, CBC had an ambitious and wide-ranging tree planting program. Through its efforts, large, mature specimen trees were placed in numerous visible downtown locations. In the 1980s CBC and the BUILDING OWNER'S AND MANAGERS ASSN. OF CLEVELAND developed a tree maintenance program. The CBC's funds were used exclusively for beautification, as all personnel involved were volunteers. When the Board of Trustees decided in 1994 to dissolve the organization, an agreement was reached with the Ohio State Univ. Agricultural and Technical Institute in Wooster to establish an annual Cleveland Beautiful Committee scholarship for qualifying students from Cuyahoga County.