Firms make design plans

WARREN – Trumbull County commissioners agreed Wednesday to begin talking with two architectural firms to make plans for downtown Warren property they’ve acquired and to design a new Veterans Service Commission building.

Baker, Bednar, Snyder and Associates of Warren will design the master plan for the 22 parcels of property commissioners bought for $750,000 from Michigan-based Talmer Bank and Trust, which has taken over First Place Bank.

The jewel of the purchase is the building that held the bank at the corner of East Market Street and Pine Avenue N.E., where commissioners intend to house employees now in the decaying Wean Building. Much of the property, though, is between High and West Market streets and Pine and Vine avenues.

Phillips-Sekanick Architects, also of Warren, will design the 4,000- to 5,000-square-foot veterans commission building, which will be built in the new county footprint and face either High Street N.E. or East Market Street.

Veterans Service Commission staff have been wanting to move from the second floor of the Job and Family Services building, claiming their office now is cramped, lacks adequate parking and can be difficult to get to, especially for disabled veterans.

There was talk of leasing new space for the commission; however, it developed into constructing a new building for the service agency. It’s hoped the building will be built in the next 12 months.

The design fees for both firms are estimated to be less than $50,000. They already have been determined by commissioners to be the most qualified firms to do the work.