YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Sitting across Mahoning Avenue just outside of downtown Youngstown is a historic archway that has been abandoned for years.
But now, a local graduate has taken a $20,000 grant to shine a light once again on the Mahoning Avenue Archway.
David Tamulonis is a graduate of Boardman High School and Youngstown State University. He now works for the Youngstown Neighborhood Development Corporation (YNDC) as the marketing coordinator.
YNDC is a non-profit organization that works to transform neighborhoods into meaningful places once again.
While at last year’s YSU/Kent State design hack at the McDonough Museum of Art, Tamulonis came up with an idea that resulted in installing lights on the arch.
“The original intent of the project was to connect satellite locations in neighborhoods like Mill Creek Park and the [Youngstown] Playhouse with the developments happening downtown,” he said.
Shortly after the design hack, he included a mock-up of the design in a piece he made for the museum’s Visions of Potential exhibition.
Now, there are energy efficient LED lights on all sides of the archway, both east and west facing, and underneath the arch.
“The center lighting [lights up] the archway and sort of highlight[s] the historic piece of architecture,” Tamulonis said.
He says before these new installations, the archway hadn’t really seen a lot of maintenance in the past 20 to 25 years.
“The arch used to be a railway trestle that was decommissioned when the railway was disconnected from the west side of Youngstown through here,” Tamulonis said.
Although current unused, tracks may still be on top of the archway, but there has been a lot of overgrowth throughout the years.
“A lot of people have reached out to me and expressed a lot of admiration for the project,” he said.