YOUNGSTOWN — The Western Reserve Port Authority will move to purchase a property on Glenwood Avenue on the south side of Youngstown to assist the Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation in its economic development efforts.
“We hope to use it to attract business to the neighborhood,” said Ian Beniston, executive director of YNDC. “This is part of a series of steps we are taking that will hopefully, over the long term, stabilize the corridor and attract much more investment than is coming now,”
The port authority Board of Directors voted at their Wednesday meeting to enter into a cooperative agreement with YNDC and to purchase the property at 2246 Glenwood Ave. for a sum not exceeding $125,000.
“We’ve already been to the Realtor and given a deposit and signed our offer,”said Anthony Trevena, the director of Economic Development for the Northern Ohio Development and Finance Authority, a branch of the port authority. “It’s listed for about $200,000, so we are getting a pretty good deal on it.”
Once purchased, the port authority will enter into a triple net lease with YNDC.
“They will be responsible for all the management, maintenance, insurance, repairs, grass and so forth, and they will essentially be responsible for the facility and can sublet,” Trevena said.
During that time, YNDC hopes renovate the property, which was previously owned by the Rescue Mission of the Mahoning Valley, and ready it for commercial use.
“[We] will create some market-ready modern space for small businesses,” Beniston said. “We do know there are some interested parties.”
At the end of 18 months, YNDC then will acquire the property from the port authority.
“In a sense, they needed some time to establish their business plan, to work on applying for some grant funding. What our role here is to take it off the market and to preserve it for them to develop the property into a facility to create jobs for our community,” Trevena said.
This comes in a chain of projects to revitalize the area.
“The neighborhood where this business is located, we’ve been working heavily, primarily on the residential side. We’ve also been working on that corridor primarily to demolish blight, to reassemble land,” Beniston said. “We have another apartment building down the road we are renovating. We have a partner organization on Glenwood that is renovating a mixed use building, putting a cafe in.”
Trevena said the port authority is excited to work with YNDC.
“YNDC has a strong track record of successful development with their community. They truly know the pulse of that region,” he said. “They know this market, they know its demands and needs, and they are getting an influx of people that are interested in creating small businesses.”
Copyright: Tribune Chronicle, February 22, 2018. By Liam Bouquet