Author Topic: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development and News  (Read 20608 times)

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Offline yanni_gogolak

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #630 on: May 15, 2018, 10:02:48 AM »
DoubleTree Adds Final Touches Ahead of Opening
By George Nelson | May 15, 2018

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Workers scurried around the new DoubleTree by Hilton Youngstown Monday in preparation of the arrival of its first guests.

Contractors were putting the finishing touches on the exterior of the downtown hotel as painters and other work crews completed the interior work, barely a day ahead of its official opening today.

https://businessjournaldaily.com/doubletree-adds-final-touches-ahead-of-opening-day/

Offline Dblcut3

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #631 on: May 15, 2018, 05:22:52 PM »
DoubleTree Adds Final Touches Ahead of Opening
By George Nelson | May 15, 2018

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Workers scurried around the new DoubleTree by Hilton Youngstown Monday in preparation of the arrival of its first guests.

Contractors were putting the finishing touches on the exterior of the downtown hotel as painters and other work crews completed the interior work, barely a day ahead of its official opening today.

https://businessjournaldaily.com/doubletree-adds-final-touches-ahead-of-opening-day/

The hotel is actually open today. I'm going to be making a detailed post about it when I get a chance.

Offline ColDayMan

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #632 on: May 15, 2018, 05:39:36 PM »
Fantastic!
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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #633 on: May 15, 2018, 10:58:40 PM »
So happy to finally see this.
"Treat this (November 2018) election as if it's the last election in which you can fully exercise your democratic rights. Because it just might be." -- Margy Waller.

Offline Dblcut3

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #634 on: May 16, 2018, 07:25:53 PM »
I have a lot of news out of Youngstown today....

Downtown's DoubleTree Hotel Now Open!

The new DoubleTree by Hilton hotel in Downtown opened yesterday in the historic Stambaugh Building. The building had been mainly empty and in a state of disrepair for years until it was purchased by NYO Property Group. They had been working for years to turn the building into a hotel.

The entrance of the Stambaugh Building:


The first floor has four retail spaces, the lobby is on the second floor. The first restaurant, Bistro 1907 will open on May 23rd. It will be an upscale Parisian bistro inspired restaurant owned by a reputable local chef. Another restaurant, YOSTERIA, will eventually open. It will be an upscale Tuscan restaurant. It is currently running a test kitchen out of Downtown's B&O Station. The third business will be Branch Street Roasters - an award winning Boardman based coffee shop. The fourth business will be a bank.

The lobby of the hotel:



The top floor is a large ballroom and conference center. There are future plans for a rooftop bar and pool. The hotel is already nearly booked in its first week and will have its grand opening on May 30.

One of the hotel rooms:


Inside Bistro 1907 on the first floor:


The Enclave Project Drops Retail Plans:

There's some bad news coming out of the YSU neighborhood - The Enclave project's developers have dropped plans for a retail building along Wick Avenue in favor of building a 4,500 square foot student health center for YSU. I'm a bit dissapointed that there will no longer be any retail there - it could have been a good way to slowly link YSU's campus with Downtown via Wick Avenue. Nonetheless, the project is going strong and the apartment portion is nearing completion. It looks great to see some density on that corner. The apartments are almost fully reserved.

The health center taking shape with the apartment portion in the background:


A drone photo of The Enclave from this week:


Phelps Street Pedestrian Plaza:

The City will be holding a meeting on May 23rd to receive public opinion on closing North Phelps Street to traffic in order to make it into a pedestrian plaza similar to Cleveland's East 4th Street. I'm really happy that the city is going this route, especially since this option didn't seem to popular. It could still be blocked, but I haven't heard any significant NIMBY opposition, and the restaurants on the street seem to be in support.

The non-pedestrian plaza proposal rendering:


Wick Tower (on corner of Federal and North Phelps), owned by NYO Property Group, has been trying to attract a business to the first floor without success. A restaurant was supposed to be opened last fall, but as usual in Youngstown, the owner got indicted and is getting his assets seized. NYO has this listing on Loopnet and area using the future pedestrian plaza as a selling point. Another planned development for North Phelps Street was the relocation and expansion of Circle Deli & Hookah Bar into a new building - but the owner, Adi Othman, was deported. I'm not sure if his kids still plan on expanding the business to Phelps Street.

Wick Tower's first floor retail space with North Phelps Street construction to the left:


Coffee Shop Relocation & New Smoothie Bar in Downtown

And one more random piece of news: Joe Maxx Coffee Company (A nationwide chain based in Youngstown) was forced out of their space at the Realty Building by NYO Property Group. This is possibly due to NYO bringing in Branch Street Roasters across the street... but NYO already has a new tenant secured, The Smoothie Bar on Central Square. The good news is, Joe Maxx decided to stay in Downtown and have reopened in the Youngstown Business Incubator Campus on the west end of Downtown! It'll be great to have a coffee shop down there.
« Last Edit: May 16, 2018, 07:45:52 PM by Dblcut3 »

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #635 on: May 16, 2018, 09:19:43 PM »
Sweet!
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Offline ColDayMan

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #636 on: May 16, 2018, 10:36:54 PM »
Gorgeous renovations!
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Offline yanni_gogolak

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #637 on: May 22, 2018, 10:34:33 AM »
And now, here the come....

TJX to Seek 75% Abatement, Offer $500K to Schools
By George Nelson | May 22, 2018

LORDSTOWN, Ohio – TJX Companies Inc. will seek a 10-year, 75% property tax abatement for its proposed $160 million distribution center, village and school district officials disclosed at meetings Monday. The company also said it would provide a total of $500,000 to the school district for security upgrades and athletic improvements.

Bradford Dunn, TJX vice president and property tax director, met Monday with the Lordstown Board of Education and the school district’s superintendent and treasurer to outline the company’s tax abatement request and gift.

https://businessjournaldaily.com/tjx-to-seek-75-abatement-offer-500k-to-schools/


Offline yanni_gogolak

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #638 on: May 23, 2018, 01:57:07 PM »
Court OKs AutoParkit Buying Former Delphi Site
By George Nelson | May 23, 2018

WARREN, Ohio – Once the paperwork with U.S. Bankruptcy Court is completed, Christopher Alan said he can move forward with work at the former Delphi Packard Electric property at 402 Dana St. and “start the investment that we wanted to make from the beginning,” he said.

Bankruptcy Judge Kay Woods Tuesday approved the purchase of the property by Alan, CEO of AutoParkit LLC, from Maximus III Properties LLC. Maximus, which is owned by businessman Sergio DiPaolo, is in Chapter 7 bankruptcy.

https://businessjournaldaily.com/bankruptcy-court-oks-autoparkit-buying-delphi-site/

Offline BOJ

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #639 on: May 23, 2018, 02:03:35 PM »
^ that appears to be very welcome news

Offline Dblcut3

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #640 on: May 23, 2018, 05:26:00 PM »
Phelps Street Pedestrian Mall News:

City officials are holding a meeting tonight (May 23rd) for public input on the proposal to close North Phelps Street in Downtown to create a pedestrian plaza inspired by Cleveland's East Fourth Street. The hope is that it will help attract more pedestrian traffic from YSU's campus into Downtown's entertainment district and then further down Phelps Street to the new amphitheater and riverfront park being built. Fortunately, I think this will end up happening. The mayor has announced that he is in support of it and the businesses on the street are enthusiastic. The only real issues with it I can find are people saying it will "increase loitering" or create a "hangout for beggars and criminals." - Typical anti-development attitudes from suburbanites who haven't been Downtown since the 80s. So without a solid reason to oppose it, it should go forward!

I'd like to really thank the Planning Commission for pushing the pedestrian plaza idea since it was nearly dead in favor of just having a streetscaping project instead. The city has identified four vacant spots on the street and three potential storefronts in a building next to Wick Tower. A major component to the plan would be spaces for food trucks to park. With all these new developments planned for this side of Downtown, I think it is time for the city to consider building a new parking garage.

Here's a very basic plan for the plaza - honestly this plan confuses me, but here it is anyways:


The Kitchen Post Now Open in Downtown:

A popular local restaurant, The Kitchen Post, has closed it's Struthers location in favor of moving Downtown into Erie Terminal Place (Interestingly, they will be across the street from the proposed Phelps St. Pedestrian Plaza). I'm glad that they are opening here - it is a very prominent space that was previously vacant. Now with them, One Hot Cookie next to them, and the restaurants and developments on Phelps Street, this will be a great walkable part of Downtown in the coming years. They are open for business but will have strange hours until the end of May.

Erie Terminal Place:



The Kitchen Post is very well know and is one of the few "hip" restaurants in town. They are best known for their simple yet creative dishes and brunch selections. In particular, they are known for Taco Tuesdays, Ramen Thursdays, chicken & waffles, and more. They also serve craft beer from two local breweries: Noble Creature Cask House and Birdfish Brewery.

Inside the Kitchen Post:



New Golden String Radio Studio:
Iron String Life Enhancement (ISLE) is a local group that helps people that have disabilities. One of their programs, Golden String Radio (online radio), is moving to a new building on South Phelps Street in Downtown. The building will house the recording studio as well as space for Purple Cat Records - another branch of their program. This will have more recording studios for musicians such as the Purple Cat Band and will feature a record store. The building will also feature an art gallery from local artists and classrooms for art and music lessons. ISLE hopes to attract musicians with disabilities from across the country to this new studio.

The new ISLE Music Building on South Phelps Street:



I can't find any photos of the inside, but it is a pretty impressive space. It's definitely a good use for this old building. ISLE is working to renovate another group of buildings in Downtown and will be relocating their administrative offices to there.

The Fifth Avenue Buildings that will be renovated:



Silver's Building For Sale:
The Silvers Vogue Shop building is up for sale in Downtown. It is a historic building on a very prominent corner (West Federal & Phelps). The first floor tenant, Silver's Vogue Shop will remain open and has been an important Downtown shop for decades - but the building could really use some TLC. I'd love to see some apartments go in upstairs and a new storefront on the side of the building - or at the very least, I'd like to see the boards come off the windows! So if anyone has the money, please fix up this building  ;D

The exterior of the building from last year:


Also, I'm working on a website that will be a hub for info on Youngstown development news, neighborhood info, and anything else related to revitalizing the city into a healthy urban area. Stay tuned!

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #641 on: May 23, 2018, 08:04:22 PM »
Excellent!
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Offline ColDayMan

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #642 on: May 23, 2018, 10:58:07 PM »
This is all just great!
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Offline Dblcut3

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #643 on: May 24, 2018, 06:47:16 PM »
Ok, so apparently the meeting went well. Almost no one there opposed the North Phelps Street plan.

There was one priceless NIMBY quote though....

Quote
Madeline Beaulieu, owner of Ado’s Alterations in the affected section of North Phelps, said she has mixed emotions about closing the street to vehicles.

“I don’t want people sitting in front of my store looking at me all day,” she said.

I mean seriously?!  ;D She doesn't want people "looking at her?" That's the best she can come up with? And that's a reason she believes is valid to shoot down the pedestrian mall plan? NIMBY's never fail to confuse me  ::)

And more good news: The owners of Suzie's Dogs and Drafts intend to open a new German pub style restaurant and bar on North Phelps Street next to Suzie's. This will be awesome and will bring more viability to making N. Phelps an entertainment district. The city will make it's final decision about the street by July, but I don't see any major opposition so it should happen!

EDIT: The owner of One Hot Cookie on Phelps Street (not even in the project zone) opposes it because she's tired of having construction and development projects around them...... I guess she doesn't see that making Downtown better through development projects actually does benefit them? Again, I don't understand NIMBY's.
« Last Edit: May 24, 2018, 06:57:44 PM by Dblcut3 »

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #644 on: May 24, 2018, 07:06:53 PM »
I'm still floored at how quickly downtown Youngstown has gone from being left for dead to being such a lively place. For a city that fell as hard as it did, this is all incredibly impressive.
“To an Ohio resident - wherever he lives - some other part of his state seems unreal.”

Offline Dblcut3

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #645 on: May 24, 2018, 07:17:42 PM »
I'm still floored at how quickly downtown Youngstown has gone from being left for dead to being such a lively place. For a city that fell as hard as it did, this is all incredibly impressive.

Exactly! People still automatically write off Youngstown (especially local suburbanites), but Downtown is honestly doing amazing for a city this size that fell so hard. It's very walkable, has a good amount of daytime office workers, good restaurants, a good amount of apartments, a thriving nightlife/bar scene, an up and coming arts scene, and more. Once the riverfront park is done, it will be even better. Now we just need a grocery store and maybe some newer buildings.

EDIT: To be honest, good old fashioned Youngstown corruption got the ball rolling in Downtown (Look up the NYO Property Group scandals.) But in all honesty... it worked. So I'm not complaining at all!
« Last Edit: May 24, 2018, 07:22:17 PM by Dblcut3 »

Offline Dblcut3

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #646 on: June 04, 2018, 01:43:56 PM »
So, this isn't exactly Youngstown news, but I decided I'd still post it here because it's close enough and doesn't have it's own thread.

Revitalization Efforts in Historic Lisbon, Ohio:
Source: Business Journal Daily

Lisbon, Ohio is the a village located in Columbiana County, about a half hour south of Youngstown. It is the county seat of Columbiana County. Lisbon is a very unique town - it is located at the edge of the Appalachian foothills and is the second oldest town in Ohio (Founded in 1803). It has some great historic buildings that are very underutilized. If properly revitalized, Lisbon's historic district could be a great destination. Fortunately, the new mayor as well as many locals are looking to help turn the city's Downtown area around and make it vibrant once again.

Courthouse Inn Revitalization:

Built in 1802, the Courthouse Inn is Ohio's oldest brick building. The inn has seen many famous guests during its early days: Thomas Jefferson signed the first deed for the building; Lewis & Clark stayed here on their way to St. Louis to explore the Louisiana Purchase; Abraham Lincoln stayed here on multiple occasions, and his Secretary of War, Edwin Stanton, had offices in the building for 30 years. After being vacant for decades, local developer Renee Lewis completed renovations on the building in mid-2016. There are are around 6 rooms that can be rented for the night, including the Stanton Suite. The first floor has a bar, cafe, and a popular vegetarian restaurant.

The outside of the building:


The inside of the restaurant:


The outdoor patio:


More Lisbon Renovations:

Renee Lewis has purchased another building at 136 S. Market Street that was set to be demolished. The 1805 building was purchased this year for $10,400. Lewis hopes to renovate the two story building as well as a small one story building next door. She hopes to make the first floor a coffee shop and the second floor space for a law office. Due to the very bad conditions of the building, it is unlikely we will see the project completed anytime soon.


Offline Dblcut3

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #647 on: June 11, 2018, 09:55:32 PM »
Proposed Boardman Meijer's Re-Zoning Controversy:
Source: Boardman Township

This isn't major news, but it just demonstrates why nothing gets done in the Youngstown area. Meijers (grocery store chain) is having a hard time trying to open a store in Boardman at the corner of US-224 and Lockwood Boulevard. The store would create around 300 jobs, but NIMBY's are absolutely committed to destroying the proposal. Meijers needs to rezone a small 4 acre plot from residential to commercial which is causing everyone to freak out. The Zoning Commission turned it down 4-1 after several tear-ridden testaments about how Meijers will ruin their neighborhood, bring traffic, and be a danger for pedestrians - but funny enough, the project doesn't intersect any neighborhood, only two main roads - plus there's no sidewalks so it's not like Boardman can pretend to care about pedestrians for once. Meijers is getting a 30 day extension period where they will conduct a few studies then bring it back to the Township. What most NIMBY's don't realize is that either way the land will get developed - either Meijers moves in and takes an extra 4 acres, or a plaza moves in without any rezoning. It pains me that they are blocking out the business that will bring in more jobs, when a typical plaza will just show up instead.


I know this isn't urban development, but it just shows why Youngstown suburbs are so behind. I was thrilled when Boardman got a new planning commissioner this year who is working on a plan to bring in bike lanes, mixed use development on Market Street, ect - but since the township can't even get in a flipping Meijers without NIMBY's throwing a tantrum, I can't foresee any mixed use development on Market Street sadly. Frankly, I can't wait to move out of Youngstown.

The plot that would be rezoned. The red part below it is already zoned commercial. Most NIMBY opposition is coming from Alissa Place (The cul-de-sac at the top):

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #648 on: June 12, 2018, 09:07:43 AM »
Hate to tell ya, Dblcut3, but this stuff happens everywhere. When you have an hour or two, let me tell you about the horrific battle involving the plan to build Crocker Park in pro-development Westlake.
"Treat this (November 2018) election as if it's the last election in which you can fully exercise your democratic rights. Because it just might be." -- Margy Waller.

Offline Dblcut3

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #649 on: June 12, 2018, 12:42:14 PM »
Hate to tell ya, Dblcut3, but this stuff happens everywhere. When you have an hour or two, let me tell you about the horrific battle involving the plan to build Crocker Park in pro-development Westlake.

Yeah... Im aware lol. I just cannot for the life of me understand why rezoning 4 acres is a big deal and would bring people to tears....  I guess I shouldn't be surprised.

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #650 on: June 12, 2018, 12:44:00 PM »
It would be preferable if Meijers could reuse a vacant commercial site on 224, but I’m sure that isn’t the concern.

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #651 on: June 12, 2018, 01:26:33 PM »

Yeah... Im aware lol. I just cannot for the life of me understand why rezoning 4 acres is a big deal and would bring people to tears....  I guess I shouldn't be surprised.

In my 20 years as a reporter, I've seen people so angry/emotional/irrational at rezoning meetings that they've had to be arrested and forcibly removed by police.
"Treat this (November 2018) election as if it's the last election in which you can fully exercise your democratic rights. Because it just might be." -- Margy Waller.

Offline Dblcut3

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #652 on: June 12, 2018, 04:06:24 PM »
It would be preferable if Meijers could reuse a vacant commercial site on 224, but I’m sure that isn’t the concern.

I agree. There's a lot of vacant land - but they say they are only interested in that plot.

Offline Dblcut3

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #653 on: June 21, 2018, 01:13:06 PM »
SMAR2T Transit Grant News:

The city is trying to re-apply once again for the SMAR2T Transit TIGER grant and it's honestly horrendous. The original plan called for several complete streets, bike lanes, and a bike share program. Well, for some reason, the city now wants an "autonomous shuttle." This shuttle is pathetic in my opinion - it will start at St. Elizabeth Hospital, go down Fifth Avenue, and then stop at the WRTA station in Downtown. Then a second route would go down Rayen to the University and the Chill Can Factory on the East Side.... I don't see why a new factory for a gimmicky product in the most distressed part of town should be a part of some high tech autonomous transit system. Instead, the shuttle should go into Downtown on Commerce or Front Streets - that way it would actually help link University students to Downtown. The autonomous transit shuttle would only hit the very western edge of Downtown proper.

The revised SMAR2T Corridor Plan:


There will be a public feedback meeting at the 10th floor of City Center One (100 E. Federal St.) from 4-6pm on July 5. I still hope this goes through though because Downtown really needs complete streets. I was in Downtown recently, and outside of Federal Street, the pedestrian infrastructure is really lacking.  In all honesty, I see why the city has been denied the grant twice already - the plan is just all over the place and Youngstown's history of corruption and bad usage of money which continues to today doesn't help.

And here's some older plans/renderings of SMAR2T which I hope are still a part of the new proposal:

Bike lanes connecting Mill Creek to Downtown and Downtown to Youngstown State University Campus:


Road Diet on Fifth Avenue:


Commerce Street road diet:
« Last Edit: June 21, 2018, 01:16:24 PM by Dblcut3 »

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development News & Info
« Reply #654 on: June 21, 2018, 09:52:15 PM »
Great stuff!
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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development and News
« Reply #655 on: July 03, 2018, 11:05:46 AM »
Here are couple of photos from Downtown Youngstown from last week. The last time I was downtown was about 10 years ago. I saw 3 or 4 people on the same route that I took last week. I was pleased to see a fair amount of pedestrian activity and people out and about.

New DoubleTree Hotel:



The Federal Restaurant:



Looking west on Federal St:



The day before this photo was taken, someone jumped from the top of the bridge in the distance. Thankfully they survived.



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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development and News
« Reply #656 on: July 03, 2018, 11:58:12 AM »
That's the Lake Erie & Eastern Railroad, built in 1910 as a 2- to 6-track-wide bypass of the Mahoning Valley's congested railroads, from Girard to Campbell. Instead of going around Youngstown's congested railroads, it went over or under most of them.
"Treat this (November 2018) election as if it's the last election in which you can fully exercise your democratic rights. Because it just might be." -- Margy Waller.

Offline yanni_gogolak

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development and News
« Reply #657 on: July 06, 2018, 02:10:47 PM »
Smart2 Planners Preview Fifth Avenue Upgrades
By George Nelson | July 6, 2018

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Imagine Fifth Avenue rebuilt as a boulevard, with a median in the middle, multiuse lanes for biking and other activities in each direction and tree lawns on both sides of the street.

Then contemplate adjacent streets upgraded to accommodate current traffic, as well as driverless shuttles conveying riders to destinations around the greater downtown area.

https://businessjournaldaily.com/smart2-open-house-previews-upgrades-to-fifth-avenue/

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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development and News
« Reply #658 on: July 12, 2018, 09:07:52 AM »
Port Authority Anticipates Closing on Harshman Building Next Week to Begin Renovations for Eastern Gateway Community College.
The Business Journal:
https://t.co/CHQmjfsTMa
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Re: Youngstown-Warren: Random Development and News
« Reply #659 on: July 12, 2018, 02:58:00 PM »
Youngstown's Oldest Church Being Saved:

The Welsh Congregational Church, built in 1861, is Youngstown's oldest church. It is on Elm Street in the YSU neighborhood in between the YSU campus and Downtown. The church was the community center of Youngstown's Welsh community, which was the largest immigrant group in Youngstown during the 19th century. It has been owned by the Youngstown Catholic Diocese for decades and has been vacant and in bad shape. Luckily, Youngstown CityScape stepped up and announced an ambitious restoration project for the church. The plan is to move the church from its current location to Wick Park on the North Side. It will be used as a multi purpose community meeting house. This will hopefully contribute to the Wick Park Historic District, which is struggling to maintain its historic structures. CityScape is holding a fundraiser on July 20th at Noble Creature Cask House at 5:30pm to support the renovation. The Diocese will redevelop the land to better blend in with the neighborhood and campus.

The Welsh Congregational Church:


New Utility Box Art in Downtown:

Downtown Youngstown has added five new utility box artworks recently. This is in addition to several that were already put into place in late 2017. This time the project was in Central Square and West Federal Street. They feature artwork and photography from local artists working with YSUscape. This along with new self guided walking tour signage were installed on the city's 222nd birthday.

Utility boxes on Central Square:



Utility box in front of Powers Auditorium on West Federal Street:


Youngstown CityScape also installed five new self-guided walking tour signs marking several historic sites in Downtown including the B&O Railroad Station, Central Square, and Wick Park.

One of the new walking tour signs in Downtown: