SOUTH SIDE Former Giant Eagle to become library

The Lowellville branch of the library has been sold to a private citizen.
YOUNGSTOWN -- A former Giant Eagle store will become the site of a new South Side library.
The board of trustees of the Public Library of Younstown and Mahoning County will buy the property at Market Street and Midlothian Boulevard from Giant Eagle, 101 Kappa Drive Associates #1, for $225,000.
"The property is valued at $350,000, but the seller stepped up and took $125,000 off the price," Library Director Carlton Sears said Thursday during the meeting of the library board of directors.
The board said the current South Side branch location, at Market and Delason streets, would likely be sold.
The meeting also included approval of selling the Lowellville branch library to Frank Lellio for $61,000.
Collaborative effort
Sears reported the library is considering an East Branch expansion in tandem with the Salvation Army.
The Salvation Army and the library will jointly apply for a potential $10 to $30 million grant for the community center.
"Originally we were going to build a new East Branch but the opportunity came up with this grant," said library public relations director Janet Loew.
"The library and Salvation Army will consider a partnership," Sears said.
The joint Salvation Army and updated East Branch Library would sit on seven and a half acres of recently purchased library property on the city's East Side.
Sears also reported the children's area of the Main Library will be remodeled, with several bookshelf panels being removed to form streetscape scenes of local landmarks. The panels will also be used for bookends.
"We can't remove the entire bookshelves because the steel pillars in the shelves support the building's framework," Sears said.
The children's area will feature a streetcar-themed workspace and painted ceilings.
Students from the Cleveland Institute of Art will provide their expertise in updating the area, he said.

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