OEPA Approves Certification for Enterprise Park

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency today issued its final certification for the construction of Cafaro Co.’s Enterprise Park near the Eastwood Mall, putting the project one step closer to breaking ground

“This project is vitally important to the economy of the Mahoning Valley and the welfare of its citizens,” Joe Bell, Cafaro director of corporate communications, said in a statement. “Members of the development team for Enterprise Park are delighted to know that state officials recognize that this project will be implemented in a thoughtful and environmentally responsible manner.”

The next step, Bell said, is to receive approval from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

“Cafaro Co. will now be proceeding diligently to create Enterprise Park, but there are several additional steps that must be taken before breaking ground,” he said.

The certification is part of the application by North Eastwood LLC – a Cafaro subsidiary – to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to discharge fill material during construction into streams and wetlands that are part of the Lower Mosquito Creek watershed. 

To offset the impact, the Ohio EPA said in its announcement, North Eastwood will save roughly 27 acres of Category 2 and 3 wetlands and preserve more than 5,000 linear feet of streams at the site. The company will also purchase stream- and wetland-mitigation credits in other areas. 

While the total size of Enterprise Park is 103 acres, Bell said, the development area will be about 50 acres. As part of the mitigation plan, Cafaro Co. has donated 38 acres to Howland Township as a conservation easement. A map of the site and its land use can be seen here.

As part of the approval process, the state agency ensured Cafaro’s application complies with state and federal regulations and hosted a public comment session in December. The final permits and response to comments are available here.

The $367 million medical park is expected to create 2,200 jobs and generate some $105 million in state and local taxes annually. Once completed, Enterprise Park is expected to house medical offices, education buildings and residential space.

“The proposed centerpiece would be a state-of-the-art multistory hospital building costing approximately $250 million. Mercy Health-Youngstown and Akron Children’s Hospital have each submitted letters in support of Enterprise Park,” Bell said.

When the project was first announced, Mercy Health said it would build a hospital at the site but in mid-December announced those plans had been put on hold.

Cafaro has been in discussions with Youngstown State University and Kent State University at Trumbull to develop an education building for training programs in counseling, physical therapy, pharmacy technology, dental hygiene and nursing.

Pictured: A rendering of Cafaro Co.’s Enterprise Park near its Eastwood Mall Complex in Howland Township.

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