New owner: Historic Youngstown building has ‘incredible’ potential

Ryan Sheridan, executive director of an Austintown recovery center, took possession of the downtown Youngstown building

The old Gallagher Building in downtown Youngstown remains vacant after three years.

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The historic Gallagher Building in downtown Youngstown has been standing since 1904, but the new owner said it will fit into the city’s future as well.

Ryan Sheridan, executive director of Braking Point Recovery Center in Austintown, took possession of the building at the corner of Commerce and Hazel streets.

“At a glance now when you go by, it looks like a condemned building but when you walk around that building on the inside, it is a very solid structure,” he said. “It is all concrete, the roof is solid. The potential on it is pretty incredible.”

Sheridan bought the building for $280,000. Dominic Gatta III tried for years to restore it, but said “it didn’t work out.”

“I tried everything I could. I wasn’t able to bring that to the next level,” Gatta said in a statement.

He faced fines from the city over the property’s condition. Those fines are now Sheridan’s responsibility.

“I think there’s $1,600 owed somewhere that I inherited. I don’t think that’s that bad,” Sheridan said.

Gatta always wanted the building added to the National Register of Historic Places. Sheridan will see how that could benefit the 113-year-old property, which was used by bootleggers during Prohibition and was then a band bar for 30 years.

He wants the next part of its history to be just as impressive.

“The courtyard in that building is very unique to the city. Nobody else in the city has a restaurant with a courtyard and that size of space where tables can go up, and there could be private parties, a café, a restaurant.”

Sheridan also envisions professional offices on the ground floor and living spaces on the top. He has seen numerous events downtown and wants to play a bigger role in the city’s development moving forward.

“On the weekends and even during the week for lunch, the amount of people down there and the growth in the past couple years has been really very impressive,” Sheridan said.

Sheridan will talk with architects about a design for the building. He’s already talked with the state about getting help on the project.

“There’s a very tight time frame to use any of the tax credits that are available for the building, and just setting up financing and funding is going to be fun,” Sheridan said.

He has already heard from some banks.

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