Tower to display YSU sign

Thursday, August 14, 2008

By KATIE SEMINARA

A touch of Penguin pride will grace the AT&T tower.

YOUNGSTOWN — AT T and Youngstown State University are teaming up to give the AT T tower, 106 W. Rayen Ave., an updated look with some YSU spirit.

The tower is about 200 feet high and visible from Interstate 680 and all over town.

“This partnership of YSU and AT T is to celebrate the centennial year of YSU,” said John Hyden, executive director of university facilities and support services.

Painting the whole tower white was the original intent, with YSU signs on each of the top four sides, said Hyden.

But some plans changed during YSU’s presentation Wednesday to the Youngstown Design Review Committee.

Committee members thought white for the entire tower might be too much white, but still wanted to see the tower looking more modernized.

“If this is going to be the opportunity we have to change that color, I say we do it,” said director of downtown events, Phil Kidd, of the tower’s current bronzelike color.

For now, the tentative plan is to paint the base of the tower a shade of silver and keep the top painted white with the YSU signs on each side.

The YSU letters will be lit internally and will light up at night, said Hyden.

The paint that Hyden said YSU is considering will cost around $380 a gallon, and with that kind of quality, the paint should last close to 20 years.

“We don’t want to have to repaint it every five to 10 years,” Hyden said, who noted they will be testing the paint for color and cohesiveness Friday.

YSU would like to have this project completed within the next couple of months, with a hopeful unveiling date Oct. 16.

As soon as the discussed revisions are made to YSU’s plan, Anthony Kobak, chief planner of Youngstown’s Planning Department, said the committee will schedule a special meeting to keep the project moving.

“This is a great community partnership between AT T and YSU,” said Kobak, who thinks this project will display YSU throughout the community as a big part of the area’s revitalization.