Linndale — you know Linndale, that three-foot span of I-71 noted as one of the most notorious speed traps in Ohio — fights a constant battle to exist. It seems every few years some politician takes up the public's fight and tries to negotiate some bill that would restrict cities' right to have a mayor court based on population size.
Linndale has survived each and every one of these so far. Most recently, 101 was established as the number of residents required for a mayor court, and thus the million or so dollars that come along with the ability to ticket and rake in fines. Linndale was safely above that number, barely, based on the 2000 Census which showed 117 people living there, though pegged as a small hamlet faced with a dwindling population.
Then the 2010 U.S. Census data came out and, lo and behold, Linndale suddenly sported 179 citizens, though, it should be noted that even Linndale councilmen and residents think that number is inflated. But a 53% growth in population?
Cleveland Magazine had a hunch that number was wrong, so they did what no one else in Ohio wants to do: they went to Linndale. They knocked on doors, talked to everyone, and tried to get a head count. In the end, they surmised that Linndale does claim enough residents to be above the 101 barrier, but along the way they found some odd details on the ground that didn't quite match what the Census data said. Like industrial lots that supposedly were homes, a block that's really in Cleveland not in Linndale, and more. This all becomes important because Strongsville's Tom Patton has made ridding NEO of Linndale one of his priorities.
It's a fascinating little look at an annoying little town desperately trying to survive despite the fact everyone else in the state would like it to disappear quickly and for good.
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