Lee Road's Bitcoin Boulevard, 18 Months Later
By Elizabeth Miller
When several Cleveland Heights businesses began accepting digital currency Bitcoin as a form of payment, the response was huge. Visitors from around the world stopped at what’s known as Bitcoin Blvd. on Lee Road. But a year and a half later, the Bitcoin hype has subsided.
In May 2014, 9 Cleveland Heights businesses banded together to form Bitcoin Boulevard, the first of its kind in the US and second in the world. Today, 2 of those businesses have closed, 1 is not actively accepting Bitcoin, and another has never had a Bitcoin transaction due to the Ohio Liquor Agency’s Bitcoin ban on alcohol purchases. A further problem is Bitcoin’s value, which decreased massively at the beginning of 2015. That’s when Bill Mitchell of Mitchell’s Fine Chocolates started seeing a drop in Bitcoin payment.
"Since the latter part of the winter of this year going through today, here at the end of October, it’s been deader than a doornail," says Mitchell.
Mitchell’s statement is echoed throughout several of the other Bitcoin Blvd. businesses, but some still continue to accept the digital currency as a form of payment.