The Western Reserve Port Authority made more big moves to remake the former Youngstown Development Center into a campus for social services on Wednesday, this time deals worth nearly $550,000 for plumbing and building upgrades at the facility in Mineral Ridge.
The projects are needed to transform the center on East County Line Road into the Campus of Care. The plan is to offer services from county and nonprofit agencies to seniors, youth, veterans and those with mental, physical and developmental disabilities.
Youngstown-based Komar Anchor Plumbing and Drain Service won the plumbing contract with a low bid of $111,422 for work at nine of 10 buildings. Brookfield-based Declan Construction Inc. won a contract to renovate the site’s 40,000-square-foot central building with a low bid of $429,000.
Plumbing at the main building, which will be built out to fit the needs specific to its tenants — Alta Behavioral Health, Headstart and Boundless, a national outfit that provides skills training for special needs clients — is part of the agreement with Declan.
Boundless will bring 40 professional jobs, including psychologists, social workers and counselors to the campus.
“The broad brush strokes are happening, which is get the flush valves in, get the lighting, and now we’re working on the next layer, which is job training, food production, all of those things that will compliment one another and help the agencies lower their costs,” said Sarah Lown, public finance manager for the port authority.
The port authority last month hired Gulu Electrical Contractors of Youngstown for $57,000 to divide power service among the buildings.
Plumbing upgrades include replacing about 200 fixtures and all flush values and faucets at nine buildings, and flushing and chlorinating the main water line at the campus and services lines to all of the buildings, said Randy Partika, project manager and development engineer for the port authority.
The port authority is shepherding this project with the Mahoning County Mental Health and Recovery Board. The cost of the work will be reimbursed by Mahoning County commissioners.
Formerly YDC, a residential facility for the developmentally disabled, the campus on about 35 acres was closed in June 2017, but the state maintained it and invested $1.1 million to repair the underground power system.
So far, agencies committed there include Meridian Services, Compass Family and Community Services, Alta Care Group, Homes for Kids, the Trumbull and Mahoning County Board of Developmental Disabilities, Easter Seals, Potential Development and the YMCA.
The campus at 4981 E. County Line Road is expected to serve residents of Trumbull and Mahoning counties. A dedication ceremony is set for 10 a.m. Oct. 2.
Also Wednesday, the port authority agreed to spend $1.5 million to buy a building that houses some government offices and immediately sell it for that price.
In Austintown, the port authority sold 50 Westchester Drive to Mahoning County Public Health, which has offices in the Austintown building. The county’s building inspection and planning departments also are there.
It bought the building Aug. 20 at auction for the county after its owner decided to sell. The county, which had been leasing the space, was unable because of government rules to bid on it, “but the port authority has the flexibility to do that,” Lown said.
“What’s nice here really is it means they’ll no longer be making the rent payments,” Lown said, instead putting that money back into public health programming.
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