Youngstown Council votes for road resurfacing, bike-friendly policies

A vacant building across from St. Elizabeth's Hospital that's become an eyesore will also be acquired by the City of Youngstown

downtown youngstown

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Wednesday evening, Youngstown City Council continued making decisions to clean up the city.

Council unanimously voted to beautify Youngstown’s signature intersection — where Market and Federal streets come together downtown.

Members said the roads are a mess one block in each direction. So council approved spending $400,000 — $320,000 from the state and $80,000 in city money — to have them resurfaced.

“Probably in the month of August after the Italian Fest, going to resurface Federal Street from Phelps all the way to Walnut,” Mayor John McNally said. “Then we’re going to resurface Market Street from Commerce to Front Street.”

Council also repealed a law forbidding bicycles and motorcycles from being ridden on Federal Plaza.

The law was passed in the mid-1970s after the city shut off a section of Federal Street and built a plaza. The plaza has since been removed and Federal Street’s been restored, so the law is no longer needed.

“The city is applying for a grant for a new bike path connecting downtown to Mill Creek Park, and so we want to make sure we have all our ducks in a row and that our city is bike-friendly,” said Fifth Ward Councilwoman Lauren McNally.

City council also took the first steps toward acquiring the Bel-Park office building on Belmont Avenue across from St. Elizabeth’s Hospital.

The building has been vacant for a decade and council agreed it falls under the city’s spot blight elimination law.

The Bel-Park building is in Councilman Nate Pinkard’s Third Ward. He said it’s become an eyesore.

“When developers come to town and I take them down Belmont Avenue, first thing out of their mouth, ‘What’s with the big white building?'”

Council asked for proposals for a green infrastructure plan McNally is introducing. Two weeks ago, the Chicago-based Fresh Coast Capital proposed a plan some on council deemed too expensive.

Members also jumped on board with a resolution urging the Trump Administration to revoke the executive order on immigration and encouraged legal challenges.

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