Economic Development

Eastgate Applies for $10.2M Tiger Grant

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The Eastgate Regional Council of Governments has submitted an application to the U.S. Department of Transportation for a $10.2 million Transportation Infrastructure Generating Economic Recovery, or Tiger, grant.

The grant would support the Youngstown SMAR2T Network, a development project that “connects strategic, medical, manufacturing, academic, residential, recreational, technology and employment centers.” The focus of the network is upgrading Fifth Avenue, Rayen Avenue, Front Street, Commerce Street and Park Avenue.

Among the planned projects are transit routes, including a hub at St. Elizabeth Youngstown Hospital, improved access for pedestrians and bicyclist, and bike lanes to Mill Creek Park.

The grant application is supported by matching funds $2.3 million in cash and $7.9 million in-kind support – from Eastgate, the city of Youngstown, Eastern Gateway Community College, Mercy Health, Mill Creek MetroParks, Western Reserve Transit Authority, Youngstown State University and the area’s philanthropic organizations.

In 2016, the partners applied for a $15.5 million Tiger grant but Youngstown was not one of the 40 communities selected for funding.

What separates this proposal from last year’s, Eastgate Executive Director Jim Kinnick says, is the addition of bike lanes along Fifth Avenue reaching to Mill Creek Park and along Rayen Avenue to the Chill-Can Plant under construction, as well increased funding support from the community, reducing the amount requested from the Department of Transportation.

At the re-opening of Wick Avenue last week, Mayor John McNally said that construction on Fifth Avenue is planned for 2018 and 2019.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.