YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Eastgate Regional Council of Governments, an association of all cities, villages and townships in Mahoning, Trumbull and Ashtabula counties, is pushing forward with a unified voice. The agency was established 50 years ago.
In 2022, Eastgate’s cooperation with local partners led to more than $70 million in investments for new projects, such as the state Route 46/82 interchange, Smart2 Build, Western Reserve Road widening from Interstate 680 to Market Street and the Struthers dam removal.
“The success experienced in 2022 is an example of collaboration as a region to work with one common vision moving forward,” says Jim Kinnick, executive director.
Seven major projects totaling more than $108 million are in development. Projects include resurfacing of Interstate 680 in Youngstown, upgrades to the Boardman corridor of U.S. Route 224, removal of dams along the Mahoning River, the Mahoning Avenue/Bailey Road intersection upgrade and the Mahoning industrial park and Madison Expressway.
Initiatives and opportunities Eastgate will pursue in 2023 include a regional housing strategy and implementation plan, a lake-to-river logistics corridor, a plan for electric vehicle charging stations, the Lordstown staging area concept and the development of a regional utility coalition, Kinnick says.
Eastgate will also begin work on a repopulation strategy and implementation plan.
In 2022, Eastgate pursued the installation of a high-speed fiber line along state Route 11 from Lake Erie to the Ohio River. The initiative spans 100 miles through four counties. In 2023, it will initiate numerous residential broadband pilot projects, Kinnick says.
Eastgate continues to look to the future of the region as it develops its 2050 Metropolitan Transportation Plan. The process of developing the plan continued in 2022 and will be completed in 2023.