Eastgate Envisions ‘River of Opportunity’ for Mahoning River

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — A new plan launched by the Eastgate Regional Council of Governments looks to create a shared vision of the Mahoning River as “the river of opportunity.”

The Mahoning River Corridor Revitalization Plan will connect communities, protect wildlife and create economic development opportunities for the future, according to a release.

The plan is funded by grants from the Ohio Department of Natural Resources and includes a hydraulic analysis that evaluates how the removal of dams along the river would affect water levels. The results of the hydraulics analysis will assist communities in determining which dams can be removed without adversely affecting residents and industry along the river. 

“Eastgate is excited to launch another project that will improve the quality of life for residents in Northeast Ohio,” says Jim Kinnick, Eastgate executive director. “The Mahoning River is a river of opportunity that flows through the Valley – a corridor in which we can realize economic prosperity through recreation, wildlife, water, business, and industry.”

Because of the coronavirus pandemic, community engagement will be conducted virtually through MyMahoningRiver.com, as well as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, surveys and educational opportunities.

Eastgate’s director of planning, Joann Esenwein says, “the plan will look at opportunities for future investment to provide a sustainable future for the region and boost tourism through recreation.”  

MS Consultants Inc., Youngstown, will lead the project. Other team members include international architectural firm NBBJ; AMK Professional Services, Vienna; Environmental Collaborative of Ohio and Wallace Pancher.

“MS is honored to be leading a project that has the opportunity to be so transformational for the region,” says Shannon Fergus, project manager. “This plan is unique in that communities along the river will receive an implementation guide that will not only identify priority river projects for each community, but will also include funding recommendations and concrete steps for achieving those projects.”

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.