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About $400,000 in Improvements are Coming to Two Busy Downtown Youngstown Streets - Vindicator

About $400,000 worth of improvements will be made to two of downtown’s busiest streets that will keep them closed to vehicular traffic for about two weeks in August.

The board of control approved an agreement Thursday with the state to resurface West Federal Street between Phelps and Walnut streets, and Market Street from Front to Commerce streets.

“The roads haven’t been paved since 2005 when the city reopened Federal Plaza,” said Charles Shasho, deputy director of public works for the city.

The state would cover 80 percent of the project, about $320,000, with the rest, about $80,000, coming from the city. The city will seek proposals in April or May with work starting in August and taking two weeks to finish, Shasho said.

A day before the board meeting, city council authorized the resurfacing of six main streets throughout the city at an estimated cost of $1.5 million.

The state will cover 69 percent of the cost with the city paying the rest, or up to $465,000, Shasho said.

The roads are: McCollum Road from Schenley Road to Belle Vista Avenue, and Bears Den Road from Industrial to McCollum roads, both on the West Side; Oak Street Extension from Lamar Avenue to Jacobs Road, and Early Road from Cornwall Street to East High Avenue, both on the East Side; Logan Avenue from Lauderdale to Wick avenues on the North Side; and Gibson Street from Dewey to Palmer avenues on the South Side.

Even with the increased focus on road improvements, the city is in desperate need of funding to do more work to its infrastructure, Mayor John A. McNally said.

Also Thursday, the board signed another deal with the state. This one calls for Ohio to provide $200,000 through the Safe Routes to School program for improvements at and around Taft Elementary School on East Avondale Avenue. That work includes upgrades to signs and signals, new sidewalks, bicycle parking and curb ramps.

“This will encourage kids to walk or ride their bicycles to school,” Shasho said.

The work will be done this summer, he said.

In other action Thursday, the board:

Approved a $205,587 payment to Youngstown Downtown Properties Inc. for 1.2 acres of a parking lot on Front Street that would be used as the entrance to the downtown amphitheater to be opened by May 1, 2018.

Agreed to pay $26,500 to Marucci & Gaffney Excavating Inc. of Youngstown to demolish the former Nick Johnson Park pool house that’s been closed for about 30 years.

The work is part of a contract the company has with the city to demolish dilapidated concrete bleachers at six park locations.

In addition to Nick Johnson on the East Side, the other parks are Stambaugh Field, Ipes Field and Gibson Field on the South Side; Oakland Field on the East Side; and Tod Park on the North Side.

The original contract was for $158,718 and goes to $185,218 with the Johnson pool house demolition.

The only bleachers left to come down are at Tod, and they’ll be demolished in a couple of days, said Abigail Beniston, the city’s code-enforcement and blight-remediation superintendent.

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