Commercial buildings razed with CDBG funds

WARREN — Another commercial building in the city has been reduced to rubble as a crew from Sereday Trucking in Masury was tearing down 2774 to 2782 Youngstown Road SE on Friday.

The demolition is expected to be completed by late next week. The property is one of 11 commercial sites being demolished using 2017 Community Development Block Grant funds. Five of them — 806 Parkman Road, 1403 Main Ave. SW, 909 Martin Luther King Blvd. SW, 3937 Youngstown Road SE and the building at 2774 to 2782 Youngstown Road SE that previously housed Sil’s Night Club — already have been razed.

A sixth property at 2133 Niles Road SE is slated for demolition Nov. 5, according to a list provided by the Community Development Department earlier this month. Five others — 1325 Niles Road SE, 1824 McMyler St. NW, 1323 Larchmont Ave., 1340 Palmyra Road SW and 1704 Milton St. SW — are not yet scheduled.

Cost for tearing down the properties is $213,993, which includes demolition and expenses like advance asbestos abatement.

Lori Lemasters, grant coordinator for the Community Development department, said previously the property owners will be billed for the city’s expenses. She also said this is the second year the city has used a portion of its CDBG funds to tear down commercial buildings, with plans to do so again next year.

She said Trumbull Neighborhood Partnership has been using demolition funds it has received from various sources to tear down housing it has access to through the Trumbull County Land Bank, which frees up city money for commercial demolitions.

TNP legally cannot use its funds to demolish commercial properties, according to TNP Executive Director Matt Martin.

TNP so far in 2018 has spent an estimated $1.6 million in demolition and asbestos removal on 180 residential properties. Martin said the goal is 200 properties, which would nearly double last year’s 101 residential demolitions.

Chris Taneyhill, Warren’s building official, helped pick the commercial structures that would be torn down based on their physical condition, the willingness and ability of property owners to rehabilitate, and whether they are safe.

Two of the largest commercial building that officials would like to see torn down, but are simply too large to be done using CDBG funds, are the former St. Joseph Riverside Hospital on Tod Avenue NW and the former Community Development / Health Department building at 418 Main Ave. SW.

Lemasters said previously the cost to tear down 418 Main Ave. was estimated at more than $600,000 and the cost of tearing down the former hospital was estimated at more than $1 million.

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