Act quickly, deftly on SmartPark

America Makes, the NaTIONAL Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute, has produced a powerfully positive imprint of the Mahoning Valley on the world tech stage since its opening two years ago.

That impact, reinforced by the Maker City convention earlier this month at the unassuming West Boardman Street hub, is about to expand further to energize the entire Valley economy. According to plans, AM researchers will serve as a brain trust for an expansive and aptly named SmartPark in the Valley.


Developers have targeted an 80-acre site in Springfield Township for development of the multimillion-dollar high-tech business park filled with 1,000-plus workers in 15 innovation centers populated by representatives of Fortune 500 companies. It has almost all the right stuff.

County leaders must now work cooperatively with SmartPark developers to brainstorm the best and quickest route to provide sanitary-sewer service to the former Barth Farms site.

The sooner groundbreaking for the SmartPark can take place, the sooner the success of the downtown 3-D research hub can be duplicated more broadly onto the economy and quality of life of our increasingly tech-savvy region.

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