The Fleet Branch, located in the Broadway-Slavic Village neighborhood, took a long journey before arriving where it is today. Library service began with the Fullerton School Branch, which then became the “Fleet House Community Station” in 1928. Materials moved to a leased location at 6522 Fleet Avenue in 1930, and services earned branch designation in 1931. In 1941, the Branch leased a new building further down Fleet Avenue.
A new Branch was built at 7224 Broadway in 1981. Over its 8,900 square feet perches a stainless steel terne-coated roof chosen to reflect Cleveland’s industrial heritage. The shiny metal was intended to mellow to a subtle pewter tone over time. The interior used russet color brick, oak wood and clerestory windows to combine warm tones with natural light. As of November 16th 2012, the Broadway Branch merged with the Fleet Branch, merging and connecting two service areas to provide services and programming out of the Fleet Branch.
Fleet holds two large foreign language collections: Polish and Spanish. Fleet Branch also offers a collection of career books, as well as information resources on several Catholic and Cleveland Municipal Schools.
The metal mural located behind the circulation desk was installed when the new Fleet Branch was opened in 1981. It is untitled and was created by artist Clarence E. Van Duzer. Fleet is also the home of The Cleveland Flats by Jerry Arnold, oil and spray paint on canvas.
Community Vision Plan
In 2014, CPL initiated the Community Vision Plan to gather the necessary input from library patrons to ensure that Fleet and all branches will offer appropriate services by 2019.
The Fleet Branch visioning process includes three levels of engagement:
- Advisory Committee
- Stakeholder Focus Groups
- The Community At-Large
The Fleet Branch Advisory Committee includes the following members, representing local residents, neighborhood organizations, CPL staff, and library patrons:
- Chris Alvarado | Slavic Village Development
- Danielle Betliskey | Friends of the Morgana Run Trail
- Jeff Bodziony | Forward Church
- Joyce Cummings | Broadway-Slavic Village Resident
- Angela Spring | Youth Opportunities Unlimited (Y.O.U.)
- Morris Ervin | Open Doors Academy
- Jacquie Gillon | Thriving Communities Institute
- Charles Gliha | Broadway-Slavic Village Resident
- Monica Hall | Broadway-Slavic Village Resident
- Trevor Hunt | Cleveland City Planning
- Farai Malianga | Broadway-Slavic Village Resident
- Rekiat Olayiwola | Fleet Library Branch Manager
- Betty Rhodes | Broadway-Slavic Village Resident
Stakeholder Focus Groups
The focus group sessions will serve to complement the larger public meetings and online survey. By directly targeting key stakeholders underrepresented during public meetings, the focus group sessions can ensure a diversity of voices are heard and documented.
The Community At-Large
In order to engage a broad spectrum of the Fleet Branch community, the project includes public meetings and an online survey.