CityScape Kicks Off ‘This Bud’s for You’

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Youngstown CityScape kicked off fundraising and volunteer recruitment drives this morning for its annual beautification and planting day at a breakfast news conference held in the Fifth Floor Restaurant..

Themed “Youngstown: This Bud’s for You!” this year, the annual Streetscape event will take place June 4. During the 19th annual Streetscape event, volunteers will beautify the downtown landscape by removing debris, trimming shrubs and trees, planting flowers and mulching planted areas.

“We want to welcome and thank our supporters,” Sharon Letson, executive director of Youngstown CityScape, said. “We have some volunteers who have been here all 19 years, some who are new to our program this year, and some whose support comes in the form of a donation to Streetscape. We need and appreciate you all.”

Volunteer sites this year will include Wick Park, West and East Federal streets, the John Young Memorials, the Police Memorial at Front Street and South Avenue, Choffin Career and Technical Center hillside, City Hall, Harrison Common, Wick Park and, added this year, Crandall Park.

Letson also provided an update on CityScape and the Wick Corridor Project. CityScape and its partners have focused on the burial of utility lines and improvement of the lighting along Wick Avenue, a component of the Wick Avenue upgrade project not covered by federal funding.

Letson noted that CityScape’s consultant, CT Consultants, has completed engineering for the aesthetic upgrade portion of the project through funding received from the Andrews Fund. Work will involve removal of old light poles and overhead wiring, the installation of pedestrian-scaled light poles, and new vehicular lighting. The work is being coordinated with the city’s Wick Avenue construction project, which is slated for completion this summer.

CityScape also was recognized by Community Corrections Association, a longtime partner and cornerstone supporter. Dave Stillwagon, CCA’s CEO, noted the two organizations’ long-standing collaboration on numerous downtown projects that utilize CCA workers and support both organizations’ missions to revitalizing the city’s urban core and its residents.

In addition, CityScape highlighted its new collaborative partnership with the Hugh O’Brien Youth Leadership program.

The program is being hosted by members of Youngstown State University staff who are also involved with CityScape’s work in Wick Park. High school aged students from across the state will assist Streetscape with beautification work in Wick Park and Crandall Park and on the Madison Avenue Expressway bridge overpasses near YSU.

This year, for the first time, “we will engage over 200 high school-aged volunteers from across the state in our Streetscape event,” remarked CityScape’s associate director, Phil Kidd.

“In addition to planting, mulching and cleaning, we have a few special projects lined up such as the construction of bluebird boxes for Crandall Park,” he continued. “Streetscape will expose them to the terrific people here and the work we’re doing in Youngstown to improve our city.”

Copyright 2022 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.