Former ELO Retail Shop Razed for Economic Development

EAST LIVERPOOL, Ohio — A long-standing men’s clothing store on Devon’s Diamond is the most recent building being razed to pave the way for downtown economic development. The former Paul Arrow’s Pants Shop, located at 520 Market Street, was purchased by the Community Improvement Corporation during a meeting last November, during which members discussed its importance to the renovation plans for the adjacent historic Thompson building.

The project involves renovating the 1892 Thompson building for use as a retail storefront, office space on the second floor, and residential lofts on the upper floor. The Paul Arrow’s building sits between the Thompson building and a structure that is currently being remodeled to house Chef Ray’s Bar & Grill, scheduled to open in August.

There has been some discussion of using the space left from the demolition to place outdoor tables for the new business.

According to Executive Director Bill Cowan, the CIC covered the $9,710.50 cost of asbestos remediation by The Howland Co. of Boardman, while City Auditor Marilyn Bosco stated that the $45,000 demolition contract with local contractor Veterans Energy Group is being paid from the city’s ARPA (Covid) funds. She added that a legal opinion was obtained to determine if the funding can be used for demolition costs.

Veterans Energy Group owner Kevin Kerr reported that asbestos remediation was completed a week or two ago, and, barring complications, he expected the demolition to take two to three weeks. However, approximately 60 percent of it will have to be done manually due to the close proximity of the three buildings, making it difficult to use large equipment.

Kerr said that crews have already discovered some “interesting construction” during the demolition work, including shared walls with the adjacent buildings and a steam-driven elevator.

Cowan mentioned that the Thompson building renovation project has been overseen by Mayor Greg Bricker and hinges on the city receiving historical tax credits. He revealed that the city missed being awarded the credits by four points during the latest round of applications, after not receiving them in the previous round.

Paul Braslawsce owned and operated Paul Arrow’s Pants Shop for 55 years prior to his death on April 3, 2014.

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