Solon City Hall
Location in Cuyahoga County and the state of Ohio.
Location of Ohio in the United States
Susan A. Drucker.Vice Mayor Edward H. Kraus
|• Total||20.49 sq mi (53.07 km2)|
|• Land||20.36 sq mi (52.73 km2)|
|• Water||0.13 sq mi (0.34 km2)|
|Elevation||1,040 ft (317 m)|
|• Estimate (2012)||23,160|
|• Density||1,146.8/sq mi (442.8/km2)|
|Time zone||Eastern (EST) (UTC-5)|
|• Summer (DST)||EDT (UTC-4)|
|GNIS feature ID||1046426|
Solon (SOH-lin) is a city in Cuyahoga County, Ohio, United States, and is a suburb of Cleveland. It is part of Northeast Ohio's combined Cleveland-Akron-Canton metropolitan area, the 15th-largest Combined Statistical Area in the country. According to the United States Census Bureau, in 2012, the city population was estimated at 23,160.
The city has been recognized by Money in its list of "Best Places to Live" multiple times, placing 23rd in 2009, 3rd in 2011, and 10th in 2015. The city has been rated as one of the safest in Ohio, has a highly rated public school system, and was ranked as one of the "best places to raise kids" by Bloomberg Businessweek.
- 1 History
- 2 Geography
- 3 Demographics
- 4 Economy
- 5 Culture
- 6 Law and government
- 7 Education
- 8 Infrastructure
- 9 References
- 10 Further reading
- 11 External links
In 1820, the first settlers arrived from Connecticut to live in part of the Connecticut Western Reserve. The township was named after Lorenzo Solon Bull, who was the son of Isaac Bull, one of the first settlers. Purportedly, the selection of young Lorenzo's middle name was due to its derivation from the "father of democracy", Solon, the famous Athenian lawmaker of Ancient Greece.
The early settlers faced challenges common to pioneers, but in Solon, drainage and wetlands issues complicated settlement and agriculture. Overcoming these obstacles, Solon Township became an arable farming area, producing corn and wheat crops and supporting dairy farms (including five cheese factories). By 1850, the population of Solon Township reached 1,034.
Because of nearby Cleveland's position as a national hub of the railroad industry, rail also contributed greatly to Solon's growth. In 1857, the Cleveland-Youngstown section of the Cleveland and Mahoning Railroad established a line running through Solon.
Laid out in a traditional New England plan, Solon, like many of the neighboring townships, established a public square in its town center. In conjunction with townships to the north, a north-south corridor was established through the town centers of Solon, Orange, and Mayfield townships (from south to north, respectively) and, accordingly, was named SOM Center Road (now Ohio 91). Solon Township included the current municipalities of the City of Solon and the villages of Bentleyville and Glenwillow. In 1917, Solon was incorporated as a village and later became a city in 1961, operated under the mayor-council form of government.
Solon was one of the first cities to use a comprehensive zoning plan and has been able to achieve a strong industrial base, while insulating its bedroom communities from industrial activities. Further, the city has primarily concentrated its commercial and retail districts in the town center, making them convenient to all residents. In addition to its planned use for corporate and residential areas, Solon has 687 acres (2.78 km2) of city parks and recreational area, 360 acres (1.5 km2) of Cleveland Metroparks (the South Chagrin Reservation) and three golf courses within its borders.
In 1991, the extension of a divided highway, US 422, was completed as an east-west corridor just north of its town center. US 422 enables easy access to many points throughout Northeast Ohio, providing a corridor extending from Cleveland through Solon and beyond Warren into Pennsylvania.
|Climate chart (explanation)|
Solon is at (41.389871, -81.442330).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 20.49 square miles (53.07 km2), of which 20.36 square miles (52.73 km2) is land and 0.13 square miles (0.34 km2) is water.
Like other Great Lakes region cities, Solon lies in a humid continental climate zone (Köppen Dfa) and has four distinct seasons, from hot summers to cold and snowy winters. The highest recorded temperature in the city was 101 °F in 1918, and the lowest -25 °F in 1994.
Solon is 18 miles (29 km) from Cleveland in the southeastern corner of Cuyahoga County, adjacent to three other counties: Geauga, Portage and Summit (listed here clockwise from east to south). The city is bordered by Moreland Hills, Chagrin Falls, Bainbridge, Reminderville, Twinsburg, Glenwillow, Bedford Heights, and Orange (as shown in the graphic below).
Despite their similar names, Solon is not adjacent to South Solon, Ohio, a village located in Madison County in Central Ohio, approximately 35 miles west of Columbus. The two "Solons" are approximately 170 miles apart.
As of 2010, the median income for a household in the city was $96,965, and the median income for a family was $112,156. The per capita income for the city was $47,505. About 2.0% of families and 4.8% of the population were below the poverty line.
As of the census of 2010, there were 23,348 people, 8,352 households, and 6,769 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,146.8 inhabitants per square mile (442.8/km2). There were 8,765 housing units at an average density of 430.5 per square mile (166.2/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 77.5% White, 10.6% African American, 0.1% Native American, 10.0% Asian, 0.4% from other races, and 1.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.5% of the population.
There were 8,352 households, of which 41.5% had children under age 18 living with them, 68.7% were married couples living together, 9.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 2.9% had a male householder with no wife present, and 19.0% were non-families. 16.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.78 and the average family size was 3.13.
The median age in the city was 43.1 years. 27.8% of residents were under 18; 5.2% were between 18 and 24; 20.3% were from 25 to 44; 34.3% were from 45 to 64; and 12.4% were 65 or older. The gender makeup of the city was 48.7% male and 51.3% female.
In 1929, the Bready Cultimotor tractor company became the first industrial company to locate in Solon. Since then, Solon has served as home to many multinational companies, including several global and North American headquarters. Accordingly, Solon is considered a satellite city, defined as a suburb containing an employment base sufficient to support its residential population (even though the community is integrated through cross-commuting in a much larger metropolitan area).
Today, according to city government authorities, Solon has major clusters of businesses in five manufacturing industries: 1) electronic and electrical equipment, 2) industrial and commercial machinery, 3) measuring and controlling devices and instruments, 4) chemicals and allied products, and 5) fabricated metal products. Over 8,000, or 75%, of Solon’s 10,700 manufacturing jobs are concentrated in these five sectors.
Major employers include: Nestlé's (headquarters of Stouffer Foods), Swagelok, Pentair, Signature of Solon, Keithley Instruments and Arrow Electronics. Other well-known businesses include: the Cleveland Clinic, King Nut Company, and First Class Limos.
Wrap Tite, a small business in town that manufactures stretch wrap and other packing and shipping products, was given a $1.5 million Small Business Administration (SBA)-supported loan in summer 2011, a fact emphasized by Vice President Joseph Biden and SBA head Karen Mills when they visited Solon on September 20, 2011, to announce a $20 billion three-year commitment by 13 major banking chains to increase lending to small businesses in underserved communities.
The Robbins Company, a leading international manufacturer of tunnel boring machines founded in 1952, is headquartered in Solon. Robbins employs over 150 individuals in the city and has produced a number of industry innovations.
As of 2014, the top ten employers in the city are:
|#||Employer||# of Employees|
|2||Nestle Prepared Foods Company||2,225|
|5||National Enterprise Systems||500|
|6||LPS Lender Processing Services||425|
|7||Cleveland Clinic Solon Center||425|
|9||MRI Software LLC||320|
Solon is home to an active performing arts community. The Solon Center for the Arts offers classes in art, music, dance, and theater. The center holds a program for seniors entitled "Act II: Aging Creatively through the Arts," for those over 55 interested in theater or music.
The city is also home to the Solon Philharmonic Orchestra, and hosts an annual Young Artists Concerto Competition.
Law and government
The Solon Police Department (SPD) consists of 46 officers, 14 dispatchers, 16 correction officers, eight office staff, one animal warden, 19 auxiliary police, and six school guards. The station is located off of Solon Road and is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The station has several services that are divided into eight different departments, each handling responsibilities that are different from the other departments.
Solon City Schools
A majority of children from Solon and neighboring Glenwillow are educated through the acclaimed Solon City Schools public school system. The Solon City School District has been consistently ranked as one of the State of Ohio top 10 school districts as well as receiving praise from publications such as Newsweek, and US News and World Report.
Solon Schools have also received honors such as the Red Quill and Red Quill Legacy awards multiple years from the ACT organization. Schools have also received National Blue Ribbon School recognition, considered one of the highest honors for American schools, many times over the past few decades.
Solon Middle School and Solon High School also have outstanding Science Olympiad programs. Solon Middle School has been the national champion 8 times in 9 years. Their mascot is the comets.
The district contains seven schools:
- Solon Middle School
Upper Elementary School
- Orchard Middle School
- Arthur Road Elementary School
- Lewis Elementary School
- Parkside Elementary School
- Roxbury Elementary School
St. Rita School is a private Catholic religious institution, associated with the St. Rita Roman Catholic Parish Church in Solon, that offers preschool, elementary, upper elementary, and middle school programs. St. Rita School also has a connection to the Solon City Schools, as they have similar school hours, use the Solon School District's buses, etc. St. Rita School has also received National Blue Ribbon School designation from the United States government.
Solon has a very active single-stream recycling program. Residents can place all recycling materials (paper, plastics (from 1 through 7), tin, cardboard, and glass) in the same clear bag for curbside pick-up with no need to separate the various materials. Once per month, the city also collects computers, auto batteries, heavy steel (license plates, bed frames etc.), carpet padding, propane cylinders, fire extinguishers, liquids and solids such as paints, oil, household hazardous waste, pool chemicals, fertilizers, etc. The city also has a composting program. They collect leaves, grass clippings, etc. and turn it into compost that is then given back to the citizens at a nominal cost, currently $2.00 per bag, $1.00 for senior citizens.
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- "Best Places to Live". Money. 2011. Archived from the original on September 24, 2011. Retrieved May 11, 2016.
- Richardson, Vanessa (August 14, 2015). "Best Places to Live 2015 – 10. Solon, Ohio". Money. Retrieved May 11, 2016.
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- "Solon, Ohio (OH) income map, earnings map, and wages data". City-Data.com. 2009. Retrieved August 22, 2014.
- "Solon Ohio Language Information". Language Data Center. Modern Language Association. Retrieved August 22, 2014.
- "In Ohio, Vice President Biden Discusses Importance of American Jobs Act for Small Businesses, Announces $20 Billion Commitment to Increase Small Business Lending". whiteHouse.gov. September 20, 2011. Retrieved August 22, 2014.
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- "When It Gets Down to Business... Solon Gets It! Solon's Major Employers". City of Solon. 2014. Retrieved August 23, 2014.
- "Center for the Arts". City of Solon. Retrieved August 22, 2014.
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- "Solon High School Overview". US News and World Report. 2014. Retrieved August 23, 2014.
- "Solon High School College Profile" (PDF). Solon City School District. 2013. Retrieved August 23, 2014.
- Price, Kyla (February 7, 2013). "Solon only high school in Ohio to receive Red Quill Legacy Award". The Plain Dealer Cleveland.com. Retrieved August 22, 2014.
- "National Blue Ribbon Schools Program Schools Recognized 1982 Through 2013" (PDF). United States Department of Education. 2013. Retrieved August 23, 2014.
- Price, Kyla (October 2, 2010). "Solon and Chagrin Falls schools earn Blue Ribbon Award". The Plain Dealer Cleveland.com. Retrieved August 22, 2014.
- Cooper, Mitch (September 26, 2013). "Orchard Middle School Named National Blue Ribbon School". Patch Media. Retrieved August 22, 2014.
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- Bard, N. P. (1970). Pioneers with web feet. Solon, OH: Solon Sesquicentennial Committee.
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