Realty Tower nearly ready

By David Skolnick

The building’s owner repaid a $2 million loan to Youngstown last week.

YOUNGSTOWN — After several delays postponed its opening, the Realty Tower Apartments is expected to receive a full occupancy permit from the city as soon as Friday, its owner said.

“I would say it is 99.99999 percent complete,” said Lou Frangos, owner of the high-end downtown apartment building.

The city gave a temporary occupancy permit for Michael Morley, one of the complex’s two tenants, to move furniture into his apartment.

There are leases signed with Morley and another tenant, whom Frangos and staff won’t identify. The building at 47 Central Federal St. has 23 apartments ranging from 1,215 to 2,057 square feet. Rent ranges from $1,400 to $2,300 a month, plus utilities.

“We’ve received many, many calls” from those interested in renting at Realty, said Bill Sperlazza, Frangos’ development project manager.

Frangos spent $8.4 million to rehabilitate the former mostly vacant building into an upscale apartment complex.

Of that amount, Frangos borrowed $2 million from the city in September 2006. Frangos repaid the loan Sept. 18.

Frangos will receive $3.41 million in state and federal historic- preservation grants sometime after it opens.

The project’s original completion date was mid-June, about a year after construction began. The delays were largely caused by having to first receive clearance for various projects from state and federal historical-preservation officials.

Frangos’ company purchased Realty and three parking facilities for $540,000 on April 3, 2001.

Frangos owns several downtown buildings.

If the Realty project goes well, Frangos plans to renovate two other vacant properties downtown into housing complexes: the Wick Building at 34 W. Federal St. and the Erie Terminal at 112 W. Commerce St.

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