City Approves Abatement for Youngstown Tool & Die

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — The city’s Board of Control approved entering into enterprise zone and development agreements with Youngstown Tool & Die to support the company’s move into the former Exterran Energy Solutions Inc. building.

Under the agreements approved Thursday, Youngstown Tool & Die committed to spending $10 million, retaining 46 employees and hiring 40 more at the site. Owned by Italy-based Phoenix International S.P.A., the company manufactures extrusion dies and tooling for the aluminum extrusions industry. 

Exterran, which manufactures equipment for the oil and gas industry, built a $13.2 million plant in the city’s Salt Springs Industrial Park that opened in 2013. It closed three years later because of the downturn in the energy sector.     

Youngstown Tool & Die, which originally planned to build a new plant adjacent to the Exterran plant, moved into the building last December, said  T. Sharon Woodberry, Youngstown’s economic development director.

City Council approved the enterprise zone and development agreements in May 2020, extending the original 75%, 10-year property tax abatement from 2011 for five years. The legislation approved last year put the job creation figure at 54 jobs. The current abatement ends in 2027.

Company officials expressed concern about not being able to meet that number in three years, Woodberry said, as the coronavirus pandemic’s effect on the market. Youngstown Tool & Die has committed to adding the 40 jobs over three years and getting up to 54 new hires by the fifth year. 

The agreement doesn’t call for any new hiring within the first year, she said. 

The board also approved contracts for two environmental reviews and a housing market conditions assessment for the city-owned 20 Federal Place. 

Professional Services Industries Inc., Girard, will conduct an asbestos and hazardous materials survey throughout 20 Federal Place to outline how to safely handle and remediate any hazardous materials found on the property under the $18,805 contract. 

Hillis-Carnes Engineering Associates in Bridgeville, Pa., will conduct a Phase One environmental site assessment on the building and adjacent parking lot on West Commerce Street for $5,000, researching and assessing soil conditions on both sites.  

For $8,500, Foley & Puls Multifamily Research in Dallas will evaluate current housing market conditions for multifamily units in downtown Youngstown. The study will determine the appropriate unit mix and pricing structure that can be supported by the target market for the proposed redevelopment of the building, city finance director Kyle Miasek said. 

“This is information any redeveloper is going to want to have,” he said. 

The city put out a request for proposals earlier this for the sale and redevelopment of 20 Federal Place. The withdrawal of Warren-based Downtown Development Group’s proposal leaves Desmone, a Pittsburgh-based architectural firm, as the sole entity that has expressed interest in the building. 

The city has not made a decision regarding the Desmone proposal but there will hopefully be a meeting with City Council next month to identify how the city will proceed, Miasek said. 

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