Welcome to The BLVD, Akron's largest neighborhood buisness district.
Kenmore Historic District
The Kenmore Boulevard historic district has always been a connecting point for residents - to jobs, to neighboring communities and to one another.
In 1901, the Northern Ohio Traction and Light Company developed street car lines to connect new suburban developments to factories. The Kenmore Boulevard line was sited down the center of Kenmore Boulevard, creating a connection between rubber factories in Akron and neighboring industry in Barberton. That same year, the Akron Realty Company began developing Kenmore to be what they termed “the choicest residence section for both the busy cities, as well as for all the factories between them.”
The Boulevard quickly became the center of community and commerce for Kenmore's growing citizenry, which grew from 1,561 residents in 1910 to 12,683 in 1920 to, making Kenmore "the fastest growing city in the world" according to promotional materials of the day.
Kenmore’s street car line stopped operating in 1947, but its impact can be seen in the tree-lined center median in its former location and in the growth of the neighborhood, which today stands at more than 18,000 residents, making Kenmore the second largest of Akron’s 24 neighborhoods. The Kenmore Boulevard Historic District now boasts two guitar shops, five recording studios, some of Akron's best niche eateries and a growing cluster of hobby shops, including Kenmore Komics & Games and E&S Hobbies & Trains.
In 2019, thanks to funding from Akron Community Foundation, KNA commissioned KM Date Community Planning to conduct a Retail Revitalization Strategy that showed market capacity for up to five new food and beverage related businesses, as well as art and hobby/ entertainment related businesses for leakage categories) Read the executive summary or see the full plan.
Also in 2019, thanks to funding from the Huntington Akron Foundation KNA finalized the Kenmore Neighborhood Vision Plan to meet the following goals and objectives:
Create a culture of cross-sector collaborative planning.
Initiate a shared vision for development in Kenmore.
Make Kenmore a walkable, bikeable, liveable neighborhood.
Provide a platform for economic development.
Create a blueprint for both immediate and long-term improvement.