Youngstown council will vote Wednesday to fund a downtown sewer line project

By David Skolnick


City council will consider legislation Wednesday to appropriate $950,000 for a project to replace a sewer line on North Phelps Street.

The downtown street, between West Federal and West Commerce streets, closed a month ago for the work, which will take about six months to complete.

The project includes the installation of an AT&T duct bank containing telephone conduits and the rerouting of telephone lines as well as the installation of a 24-inch sanitary sewer line.

The work was to occur five years ago, but it came to a stop after only a month of work when it was discovered that underground utilities, primarily AT&T lines and three duct banks, were directly in the path of the sewer line.

Money for the project is coming from the wastewater fund.

Vehicular traffic is closed during the work.

Pedestrian traffic on the east side of the street is open at all times, but is restricted on the east side to only the entrances to buildings.

Also, council will consider an ordinance for a project of a $980,000 to resurface Himrod Avenue from Lane Avenue to Oak Street on the East Side and Indianola Avenue from Market Street to South Avenue on the South Side. The work also includes upgrading curb ramps and signs and new pavement markings.

The work probably won’t be done until 2019, said Charles Shasho, deputy director of public works.

The city is currently responsible for 20 percent of the project – $196,000 – with federal funding paying for the rest. By waiting a year, the city could be eligible for a state grant that would pay for its cost of the work, Shasho said.

The city’s portion of the project would come from the general fund, which currently has a $2,296,400 deficit. Proposals made last week by the city administration would reduce the shortfall to $1,050,000. The administration is expected next week to propose options to city council to eliminate the deficit.

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