YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The public learned a little more about plans to redevelop 3,500 acres around the U.S. Route 422 corridor on Tuesday night.
Representatives from Interface Studios, an urban design and planning firm hired from Philadelphia, were in town to present findings from months of data collection, interviews and focus groups about the best ways to go about giving the 422 corridor a facelift.
They identified several areas between Youngstown and Girard where improvements could be made to upgrade the overall look, unlock potential for job growth, support local businesses, stabilize neighborhoods and highlight natural assets, such as the Mahoning River.
“We really view this as a front door to Trumbull and Mahoning counties. The aesthetic improvements are important not only for the current businesses and residents of our communities here, but also for attracting new business, for continued development and for community pride,” said Youngstown-Warren Regional Chamber member John Rossi.
Residents, business and property owners wrote down feedback on cards and placed stickers with the numbers one, two and three on charts to indicate which ideas or parts of the plan they thought were the best.
A final draft of the 422 corridor master plan is expected in about a month.
Rossi said the redevelopment builds on momentum from the expansion of the Vallourec pipe mill in Youngstown, as well as other economic momentum from the oil and gas industry.
“We have many other partners in this endeavor, public, private, nonprofit and municipal partners, including the cities of Youngstown and Girard themselves,” Rossi said.