By Steven Litt
THE PLAIN DEALER: Chicago architect Daniel Burnham left a colossal imprint on Cleveland more than a century ago with his 1903 Group Plan for downtown.
The charismatic, blue-eyed architect led a three-man commission, which recommended that a huge swath of downtown "slums" be replaced with palatial government and civic buildings grouped around a central mall, flanked on the north by a train station overlooking Lake Erie.
The proposal, modeled closely after Burnham's vision for the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition in Chicago, established the location and neoclassical style of Cleveland's City Hall, Public Library, Public Auditorium and other key civic buildings.
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