City of Shaker Heights - Shaker Design Competition
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City of Shaker Heights


Shaker Heights is an inner ring suburb of Cleveland with a population of 28,448. It incorporated in 1912 and is one of the country’s first planned communities, known for its striking architecture, tree-lined streets and walkable neighborhoods. While the city has a reputation as a wealthy community with beautiful mansions, its design included specific areas for smaller single-family and two-family homes creating economic and demographic diversity. The majority of land in the city (approximately 80%) is dedicated to housing while 11% is devoted to commercial/retail uses and approximately 9% is public/institutional uses such as parkland, municipal buildings, schools and places of worship. There are no industrial facilities.


Shaker Heights has a diverse range of housing in its 12,882 housing units, including single-family homes, two-family units, townhouses and apartments. Of the 11,447 occupied units, approximately 63%  are owner  occupied;  while  the  percentage of renter occupied units is 37%. Approximately 60% of the housing is single family; while 10% is two-family houses.


Demographic Characteristics

Demographic trends in Shaker Heights generally mirror those in other first-ring suburbs across the nation.


1) The population is highly educated. Shaker Heights is a community dedicated to lifelong learning and is recognized nationally for the quality of both its public and independent schools and early childhood programs. Among our residents age 25 and older:

  • 61.7% hold bachelor’s degrees or higher
  • 33.4% hold graduate or professional degrees
  • 63.3% serve in professional/management level professions


2) The population is aging. In 2014, residents 65 years or older made up 17% of the population, compared with 12% in 1960. The median age in Shaker Heights is 41.5, older than county and state data.


3) The population is racially, ethnically and economically diverse. According to the 2010-2014 American Community Survey, the City’s population is 56.7% White, 37.5% Black and 7.2% Asian. The median income is $76,969.


4) Household composition is changing. For the first time, married couples represent fewer than half of all households, 46.8% in Shaker Heights. This is slightly below the national figure of 48%. The number of single- person households and households headed by women also continue to increase.