Broadway Development Initiative.
The Initiative begun by Third Federal Savings and Loan is a long-term revitalization program encompassing the three-mile corridor of the Broadway-Slavic Village neighborhood in Cleveland, Ohio, which historically was inhabited primarily by Eastern European immigrants who supported the steel and other manufacturing industries in Cleveland for most of this century.
The Broadway Development Initiative has brought together several groups in the corporate, non profit and government sectors to continue to stabilize and redevelop the Slavic Village neighborhood.
Third Federal Corporate Headquarters
Third Federal’s involvement in the Broadway Development Initiative (BDI) began in 1997 with the company's announcement to build a three-story operations center on Broadway adjacent to its headquarters building. In May 1998, Third Federal broke ground for a 175,000 square foot office campus constructed in a style similar to the grand historic buildings that once lined Broadway Avenue. The complex features three brick and stone buildings joined by glass connectors. A circular building called the Rotunda serves as the main entrance to the campus and is surrounded by park space used by Third Federal associates.
The new office complex brought 150 new jobs into the City of Cleveland with continuing growth of additional jobs; approximately 250 new jobs have been added since. "Our investment in an expanded campus at our headquarters continues to create value for our community and spur additional investments," says Marc A. Stefanski, chairman and CEO of Third Federal Savings. "Every community has human and financial assets, and we have chosen to invest the time to develop and implement creative strategies via the Broadway Development Initiative that build upon and leverage these assets." Thus far, Third Federal has invested more than $60 million in the Broadway area on various projects.
Broadway Elderly Housing Project
Third Federal financed Broadway Place, a senior residence facility with 42 suites, on Broadway Ave. across from its headquarters. The project has received low-income housing tax credits and opened in 2002.
New Single Family Homes in Slavic Village
Third Federal has an arrangement with Zaremba Homes to build single family homes on a reclaimed light industrial site adjacent to Third Federal headquarters. More than 70 single family homes, "cottages" and townhomes are slated for construction.
Third Federal also funded and constructed its first Greater Cleveland Habitat for Humanity home, using the help of 160 associates who were able to help build the house on company time. Previously, the Association contributed $100,000 to the organization and also purchased more than $500,000 in loans from GCHH.
Homeownership is something that Third Federal would like everyone to achieve, so in 2001, our Community Development Services Department (CDS) began a new program called HomeToday. Through referrals from pastors or representatives from community-based organizations, HomeToday provides education, counseling and flexible underwriting to individuals who are ready to get help overcoming barriers to homeownership. Past credit problems or lack of savings for a down payment are examples of barriers addressed.
To date, our associates and over one hundred partners in Ohio and Florida have educated several thousand individuals about the steps to homeownership. Participants have learned the importance of budgeting to create a savings and spending plan, how to understand credit and manage it, and how to shop for the best loan in today's crowded marketplace. This education has opened new vistas to our participants who previously did not think they could buy and own a home.
Third Federal Education Initiative
Tutoring Program/Volunteer Reading Program
In May, 1999, Third Federal also instituted a tutoring program in Fullerton and Mound Schools in the Broadway area, specifically aimed toward youngsters who need extra help to get them on track for their grade levels. The tutors, paid by Third Federal, are retired Cleveland elementary school teachers who work with individual students and small groups for a maximum of 15 hours per week. Since then, both schools have seen significant improvement in fourth grade proficiency test scores. The program has since expanded to include Miles Park and Willow K-8 schools.
Volunteer Reading Program
Third Federal began a volunteer reading program at Willow School in the Broadway area in the spring of 2000. Associates help (tutor) children with their reading during the school day. Third Federal's flexible scheduling program for associates allows the company to institute this new program without losing valuable work time.
Broadway Avenue Beautification
Using tax credits from our new building, Broadway Avenue was narrowed, and decorative brickwork added, along with trees and flowers
George S. Dively Award for neighborhood development
Agra Community Achievement Award
Corporate Citizenship Award for City of Cleveland from Ohio Arts Council