Eastern Gateway eyes downtown expansion

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By Kalea Hall



With enrollment up over last fall, Eastern Gateway Community College needs more classrooms, offices and student space for its downtown campus.

EGCC President Jimmie Bruce said Wednesday the college is working with the Western Reserve Port Authority to secure new space downtown.

Specifically, EGCC is interested in the Harshman Building at 101 E. Boardman St., but nothing is finalized at this point, Bruce said. The Harshman Building is across from the college’s location at 139 E. Boardman St. EGCC also has a location downtown at 101 E. Federal St.

“The good news is we are actively looking for additional space,” Bruce said of EGCC, which also has a campus in Steubenville. “We think we are a great complement to Youngstown State University and look forward to having a strong presence in Youngstown.”

Youngstown’s EGCC enrollment this fall is expected to be about 1,100, which is about a 20 percent increase from last fall.

The WRPA’s board of directors on Wednesday approved sending a letter of intent to purchase the Harshman Building downtown from Youngstown Harshman Holdings LLC, a subsidiary of NYO Property Group, a downtown Youngstown development firm.

The WRPA plans to use the Harshman Building for its own offices and to lease out the rest of the about 13,000-square-foot space. Potential leaseholders of the space were not mentioned at the WRPA Wednesday meeting.

The financing cost for the building and renovation is not to exceed $675,000.

The sale is expected to come to fruition quickly.

The Harshman Building was built in 1920 and remodeled in 2004, according to the Mahoning County auditor.

NYO Property Group’s subsidiary company has owned the property for about the past five years. NYO is the developer behind the new DoubleTree Hilton hotel at the historic Stambaugh Building set to open early next year.

Dominic Marchionda, chief executive officer of NYO, said the company’s goal was to eventually redevelop the property.

“This gives me one less project I have to do,” Marchionda said. “It’s a great building.”

Also at Wednesday’s WRPA meeting, the board voted to sell the air-cargo building at the airport for $1.2 million.

“We have had that building for sale for quite some time,” said John Moliterno, executive director of the WRPA. “We’ve had the opportunity to negotiate for the past several months. We have come to a proper asking price. It’s a very big step for us.”

The prospective buyer of the air-cargo building has not been publicly named.

The port authority bought the 24,650-foot former air-cargo building on Ridge Road on the west side of the airport several years ago for about $1 million to resolve problems the Federal Aviation Administration had with the airport selling the building to the private company Millwood Enterprises for nonaviation uses, according to The Vindicator files.

The port authority board also approved a private mediation with Aerodynamics Inc. to take place in October. The court has recommended the mediation.

ADI brought Chicago service to Youngstown-Warren Regional Airport last summer but pulled the service after the port authority stopped subsidizing ADI.

In April, the port authority filed a lawsuit against ADI saying the company breached its contract. The lawsuit seeks to have $361,714 of a revenue guarantee given back to the port authority.

In June, ADI filed a counterclaim saying it did not mislead officials.

“We certainly hope that the mediator can find a common ground,” Moliterno said. “This has been a long, drawn-out process, and we would certainly like it to come to a conclusion.”

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