Ground broken on Wick Avenue corridor project

The $5 million project aims to enhance the appearance of the area around Youngstown State University and make traveling easier

City leaders broke ground on the project Thursday afternoon.

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Considered the front door to Youngstown State University, Wick Avenue will be getting a facelift over the course of the next year.

City leaders broke ground on the Wick Avenue Improvement Project Thursday afternoon.

The $5 million project aims to enhance the appearance of the area around the street. Utility wires will be buried underground and improvements will be made to the street’s lighting. By making the sidewalks wider and resurfacing the road, university and city leaders hope to make traveling on Wick easier.

“It really shows that we have a dedication to make our city the best city it can be,” said Tyler Miller-Gordon, a senior at YSU.

The city hopes that these improvements will create a ripple effect. Not only will it be a way for students to get to class, but it could also be their path downtown.

“If you have a clean city, you want to represent it in a better light. Then with cracked sidewalks and cruddy roads, you don’t really want to come down here,” said YSU sophomore Anthony Pallante.

YSU senior Gabriella Gessler says the improvements will help her feel more secure when she travels downtown or off-campus.

Mayor John McNally says the Wick Avenue Improvement Project is part of a continued effort to unify the university with the downtown area.

“I think that we really understand that YSU is an integral part of the city. YSU understands we’re a great help to them, so we’re trying to work together in a much more collaborative fashion.”

The project runs along Wick Avenue, from Rayen Street on the south to State Route 422 Service Road on the north.

Fundraising efforts were coordinated by the city, Youngstown State University and Youngstown CityScape.

Work is scheduled to begin in the coming weeks and should be completed in the spring of 2017.

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