Economic Development

City Pays $205K for Amphitheater Project Land

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The city will pay $205,587 to an affiliate of the Vindicator Printing Co. for just under an acre of land to be used for the amphitheater and riverfront park project.

The city’s Board of Control approved the contract with Youngstown Downtown Properties Inc. for the property, at West Front and South Phelps streets, at its meeting Thursday morning. The board also approved a pair of easements related to the site.

The price for the 0.87-acre site represented the appraised value of the property, said Finance Director David Bozanich.

The board approved a contract with Columbus landscape architecture firm MKSK to provide design and construction management services for the $9 million project. City officials are targeting a May 2018 opening for the amphitheater and riverfront park, which will be adjacent to the Covelli Centre downtown

City officials met with MKSK representatives last week, Mayor John McNally said.

“They continue to work on the design and putting a schedule in place,” McNally said. “We’re hoping that in the next three weeks or so we’ll get pretty much a complete schedule for how the process is going to work.”

In other business, the board approved entering into an agreement with the Ohio Department of Transportation for the resurfacing of West Federal Street from Phelps Street to Walnut Street and resurfacing of Market Street from Front Street to Commerce Street.

The project, which will include any needed signage updates, represents the first work on the road since the former pedestrian plaza was removed and traffic was reopened at Federal Square just over a decade ago, Charles Shasho, city deputy director of public works, said.

“I don’t anticipate a lot of road repair,” he said. The city can bid the work as soon as it receives federal authorization, which he expects in May.

The majority of the estimated $400,000 project will be paid for through the Surface Transportation Improvement Program, with the city’s estimated $80,000 share provided by license fee funds. The work is expected to begin in August and take about two weeks.

Another ODOT agreement approved by the board will provide upgrades to signs, signals and pavement markings, as well as installation of new sidewalks, bicycle parking and curb ramps in the area around Taft Elementary School paid for using Surface Transportation Program funds. That work is estimated to cost $200,000.

“The idea is to encourage children to walk or bike to school,” Shasho said.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.