Come Tuesday, New Niles Address for Cafaro Co.

NILES, Ohio – Except for a few “punch list” items, the new headquarters for the Cafaro Co. at the Eastwood Mall Complex will be ready when employees of the real estate development company arrive for work the day after Memorial Day.

Contractors were still putting the finishing touches on the three-story office building Wednesday as Joe Bell, Cafaro director of corporate communications, took reporters on a tour. The headquarters building is attached to the Eastwood Mall and the Residence Inn by Marriott.

The move from 2445 Belmont Ave. in Youngstown will take place over the holiday weekend.

The new building, at approximately 50,000 square feet, provides slightly more space and is designed to offer greater functionality, Bell said. The biggest difference is that the design affords more light.

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“You’re going to find light in every corner of this place, and that will be a welcome change,” especially for personnel who have had to work in the “inner core” of the old building, he said.

Outside each of the conference rooms is a touchscreen digital pad that displays meetings scheduled for that room and can be used to reserve the room. A conference room on the first floor – where the accounting and finance departments will be housed – has a long conference table, “one of our few sticks of furniture that made it out of our old offices,” Bell said.

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Architecture and engineering offices are on the second floor, which also houses the marketing department. The departments on that floor share the print room.

Each floor of the building features a kitchenette, and the first floor also has a lactation room or “mother’s room,” for breastfeeding mothers to use.

Several individual offices are equipped with adjustable desks that can be raised and lowered at the touch of a button.

“That in particular is a wonderful ergonomics tool for people because sitting all the time is so bad for circulation, for your back, your posture, your neck,” remarked Lisa Skolada, account executive with RCF Group, Cleveland.

RCF worked with project architects on the workstations, wire management and features such as sound masking and modular walls. The walls can be taken down in a day and reconfigured the following day as the need for space changes without having to deal with issues such as drywall and dust, Skolada said. “It’s all very clean and easy for the end user,” she remarked.

On the top level are leasing, legal and operations. Co-president Anthony Cafaro Jr. has his office, which features a terrace, on the third floor as well. William Cafaro, the co-president who “runs the finance side of the business,” has his office on the first floor, Bell said.

Also on the third floor is an office for the company’s retired president, Anthony Cafaro Sr. In addition to pictures of his parents and other family members, his office features a signed photo of the late President John F. Kennedy and the desk his father used.

“He is retired but he still gets an office,” Bell said. “He still does some projects occasionally for the company.”

The majority of the work will be completed by Tuesday, affirmed Paul Mirage, project manager with B&B Contractors & Developers Inc., Youngstown. “There will be a few ‘punch list’ items,” such as painting and other finishing, to be completed after move-in day, he said.

The project represented “a very good coordinated effort between ourselves and Cafaro Co.,” Mirage said. Specialty items such as the Trespa wall panels on the building’s exterior represented the biggest challenge for the project, he said.

“It’s gone pretty well,” added Richard Shontz, project manager for the Cafaro Co. Completing the project took the efforts of “well over” 100 onsite workers, plus several architects and engineers behind the scenes, he said.

Shontz also reported that the Hampton Inn & Suites under construction nearby plans a September opening.

The tour also made a brief stop in the adjacent 30,000-square-foot shell that will house the Eastwood Conference Center. The Cafaro Co. is reviewing responses to the request for proposals it put out for parties that might be interested in operating the event center, a process the company expects to complete “icertainly in the next couple of months,” Bell said.

“We want to vet them very carefully. We want the very best we can get,” he remarked. Who is selected to operate the center will play a role in how the unfinished space is built out, he said.

The space will be available for “any number of potential uses, both business and social,” he said. The center will have the capacity to accommodate 1,000 guests for an elaborate sit-down dinner or space for a small business meeting of just 20 people.

“We were told by one of our consultants that there is not quite enough small meeting space available for businesses,” Bell said. “It’s going to be designed to be extremely flexible.”

Top Picture: Joe Bell, director of corporate communications, stands in the new office of Anthony Cafaro, retired president of the Cafaro Co.

Copyright 2022 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.