Education

Library Awards Contracts for Kusalaba Branch

BOARDMAN, Ohio – Contracts must be signed first, but the Public Library of Youngstown & Mahoning County expects the new Michael Kusalaba Branch to be completed in about a year.

The library’s building and sites committee met at the Boardman Branch Thursday morning to open bids and award contracts for the branch, which will be built on the site of the former West Branch on Mahoning Avenue.

Rock Builders Inc., North Lima, was named the general contractor from among the 13 bids submitted for the general trades contract. As part of its $2,697,700 contract, Rock will subcontract demolition of the West Branch building.

The committee also awarded contracts to Acme Bros. Plumbing Contractors Co., Leetonia (plumbing, $105.950); D&G Mechanical Inc., West Middlesex, Pa. (mechanical, $199,710); and JR Warren Electrical Contracting Inc., New Castle, Pa. (electrical, $471,632).

Seven companies submitted bids for the plumbing contract, four for the mechanical work and eight for the electrical package, according to Janet Loew, communications/public relations director for the library. All of the accepted bids were the lowest submitted.

Faniro Architects, Youngstown, is the architect for the project.

Loew could not say when demolition of the existing building would take place. The contracts awarded Thursday must be signed and a construction timetable will be established. Library officials anticipate the work will be done in about a year.

“We want to get the project underway as soon as possible,” Loew said. “We will do whatever we can at our end to expedite the project.”

In October 2016, the library and the Youngstown Foundation announced that the Michael Kusalaba Foundation, one of the funds the Youngstown Foundation manages, would donate $1.68 million toward the new branch, which would be named the Michael Kusalaba Branch. The library has set aside additional funds to cover the remaining costs for constructing the new branch.

Kusalaba, a former national account executive with Ohio Edison, grew up on the west side of Youngstown and he and his siblings were regular patrons of the West Side library branch. Before his death in 2009, he established a donor-advised fund at the Youngstown Foundation from his financial assets, which included the proceeds from houses he bought, rehabilitated and sold and subsequently invested.

Copyright 2019 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.