Auction company hired to sell South Side Annex

Published: Sat, March 8, 2014 @ 12:04 a.m.

By Peter H. Milliken


Mahoning County commissioners hired George Roman Auctioneers Ltd. of Canfield to conduct a public auction to sell the county’s South Side Annex to the highest bidder.

The auction will be at 11 a.m. April 11 at the annex, with a viewing and walk-through from 10 a.m. to noon April 4.

The minimum bid will be $75,000. The county will pay Roman 5 percent of the sale price, said James Fortunato, county purchasing director.

In December, the commissioners unanimously rejected the bid by the nonprofit Warriors Inc. to buy the annex at 2801 Market St. for $75,000 because it fell short of the advertised minimum bid of $426,667.

Warriors, 2733 Market St., had been the sole bidder for the vacant former county office complex, which had been appraised at $640,000.

Warriors, which operates the Eagles Christian Pre-School across Hylda Avenue from the annex, had planned to use the annex to expand its preschool and offer more services to youths and families.

The 97,232-square-foot annex closed after the auto title department, the last county agency to leave the building, moved to Oakhill Renaissance Place, 345 Oak Hill Ave., in October 2012.

The county bought the 1957-vintage annex, which had been a Sears and Treasure Island department store, from the Cafaro Co. for $1.6 million in 1975.

The commissioners also voted Friday to advertise for bids for construction this summer of a roundabout at Mathews and Sheridan roads in Boardman.

The one-lane traffic circle is designed to improve traffic flow and safety in the intersection.

The intersection will close for 60 to 90 days for the installation, which is planned for summer to minimize the impact on school-bus transportation.

When the roundabout is completed, there will be no traffic lights or stop signs in the intersection, and vehicles will be encouraged to make continuous right turns as they travel counterclockwise through the circle.

The roundabout job will be done simultaneously with work on bridges that carry U.S. Route 224 over Interstate 680, which will restrict traffic at that intersection, said Rick Clautti, office manager in the engineer’s office.

Alternate crossings of Interstate 680 with interchanges are at Midlothian Boulevard and Western Reserve Road. Overpasses without interchanges carry Thalia Avenue and Walker Mill Road over Interstate 680.

The commissioners also approved an agreement with the city of Youngstown under which the city and county each will pay $35,732 under a one-year agreement that places a deputy county dog warden on a 1 to 9 p.m. shift daily in the city, where 65 percent of the county dog warden’s calls for service originate.

Dennis O’Hara, interim county emergency-management director, said eight of the county’s 51 emergency-warning sirens failed to sound during Wednesday’s three-minute siren test. “We’re going to physically check each siren that did not work and make sure that we get them in order before we get to the spring,” he said.

O’Hara said he believes the problem was in the centrally located activation equipment and not in the sirens themselves.

“Eight out of 51, though, that’s not a good percentage,” to have out of service, complained David Ditzler, chairman of the commissioners.

The sirens that didn’t work were at Campbell Memorial and Struthers high schools, the county engineer’s office, Austintown Township Hall, the Green Township Fire Station, the Canfield maintenance building, Fellows Riverside Gardens in Youngstown and the intersection of Walker Mill Road and South Avenue in Boardman.

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