Van Aken District Public Realm Plan

Rendering of the Van Aken District with added transit amenities and an enhanced RTA station

Learn how the City is partnering with the Greater Cleveland Regional Transit Authority (RTA) and RMS to enhance the Warrensville Van Aken Transit Station and provide additional transit-oriented amenities — including for pedestrians and bicyclists — in the Van Aken District.

The Plan

Another step toward an exciting Van Aken District, the Public Realm Plan provides amenities and connections between the RTA bus and rail service, the Van Aken District, and the surrounding neighborhoods.  The City, RTA, and RMS collaborated to create a unified vision for an attractive, walkable, amenity-filled transit area. This plan lays the groundwork for a high-quality waiting environment with adequate shelter and facilities, attractive and functional pedestrian and bicycle amenities, plaza areas, and a strong connection to the adjacent commercial district and neighborhoods.  Click here to view the Plan.


The Warrensville Van Aken Station begins the RTA Blue Line Light Rail and is located between Shaker Plaza and the Van Aken District. This station and its adjacent busway is a busy hub with some shelters, but no comfort station and few pedestrian/bicycle amenities.

VAD Public Realm Site Plan

Planned Investments

RTA will undertake projects to build a new train platform, comfort station, and shelters and to relocate the electric utility’s substation equipment. In 2023, the City of Shaker Heights will receive $1.8 million in Transportation Alternative Program (TAP) funds from the Northeast Ohio Areawide Coordinating Agency (NOACA) to fund streetscape and plaza improvements in and around the station.

Next Steps

CEI is moving forward with its utility relocation and RTA is working on detailed plans for its track/platform changes, site work, comfort station, and shelters.  In 2021-2022, the City will create final, detailed designs for the public realm transformation in advance of planned construction in 2024.  Approval by the City Planning Commission and Architectural Board of Review will be required.


For questions or comments, please contact Kara Hamley O’Donnell, Principal Planner.