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Youngstown seeks military’s help with demolition of houses

Published: Wed, April 23, 2014 @ 12:06 a.m.

By David Skolnick



The city is seeking the assistance of the military to help with its blight problems.

“We’re requesting assistance from the Department of Defense to help with demolition of vacant houses and the removal of trash and brush,” Mayor John A. McNally said. “We’d be responsible for the abatement and dumping fees, but we’d receive free labor and equipment from the DOD.”

The city placed public notices in Monday’s and Tuesday’s editions of The Vindicator, a requirement before applying to be selected by federal DOD for its Innovative Readiness Training program. The application will be submitted later this week with the city finding out this summer if it is selected, McNally said.

If the DOD chooses Youngstown under this program, the work would be done in 2016.

“Demolition and blight and neighborhood cleanup are the biggest concern of citizens,” McNally said.

The city is proposing work at two locations, though the Newport/Cottage Grove area on the South Side is the top priority, the mayor said.

That area is bounded by Indianola Avenue to the north, Midlothian Boulevard to the south, South Avenue to the east and Glenwood Avenue to the west.

“We think it’s one of the top areas in the city that is in need of demolition,” McNally said.

The other location is the Upper North Heights area bounded by Gypsy Lane to the north, Broadway Avenue to the south, Logan Avenue to the east and Elm Street to the west.

The DOD program provides real-world training opportunities for service members and units to prepare them for wartime missions while supporting the needs of this nation’s underserved communities, according to its website.

If the city is chosen, it will compile a list of houses in those communities that are in need of demolition, McNally said.

The city has demolished about 3,000 houses since 2006. About 4,000 dilapidated structures remain in need of demolition.


1Roger_Thornhill(929 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Interesting. Good job trying something new. hope it works.

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2michael1757(382 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

I think they'd lend y-town a few missiles! hahaha

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3republicanRick(1476 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

West side would not be touched for years and this is where many viable neighborhoods still exist.

I'll say it again - torching the homes provides immediate, cheap relief for suffering neighborhoods. Rid the blight, the crime, and the disease infested rat filled homes.

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4JoeFromHubbard(1430 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

The military is paid by our federal tax dollars and any demolition work it may provide is not really free.

On the other hand, using military resources for demolition would be far more productive than having the troops spit shine boots and do other nonessential, make-work things.

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5Silence_Dogood(1511 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

The DOD could use the tried and true B52 with great ease. A fully loaded B52 can carry 51 Mk82 500 lbs gravity bombs, and for the larger houses it can carry the same number of Mk117 750 lbs gravity bombs.
The DOD can also deploy a platoon of Marines armed with the old M2-2 flamethrower.
The DOD can also provide an Army squad manning an M198 Howitzer.
And we wonder why the budged for the "Defense Department" is so big, an organization whose purpose is to fight our Nations enemies not tear down abandoned houses.

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6Silence_Dogood(1511 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Budget not budged, sorry.

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7DwightK(1381 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

This is good news. The South Side area described in the article needs to be cleaned out. The less places these gangsta rats have to call home the better.

It only costs a few thousand dollars to demo a house. Anyone here who thinks the DOD program is a waste of tax dollars should submit a donation to the city. I'm sure they'll appreciate the help.

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8thirtyninedollars(524 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

I agree we don't need federal troops in the city. Why not use the national guard instead? The whole training concept is a joke right? It's not like they are under fire trying to demo a terrorist house since they would just drone it anyway.

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9James_S(268 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

194<-->8 = 1984

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10JoeFromHubbard(1430 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

@ Silence_Dogood:

Great idea but may I suggest the use of a BLU82
"daisy cutter" ?

One shot will clear a city block with no radio-active fallout.

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11Silence_Dogood(1511 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Joe there are no more BLU82's left in inventory we would have to use the GBU/43-B.

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12Silence_Dogood(1511 comments)posted 1 year, 4 months ago

Thr present issue of the day is should the DOD clean up Youngstown. All sarcasm aside it is my position that the Men and Women of our armed forces should not be used to clean up our mess, their time is better spent on training for the primary task of the Military, that being waging war.
Deal with that.

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