Wick Tower Suites firefighting systems repaired, tenants return

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Frozen water pipes in the Wick Tower Suites in downtown Youngstown that forced occupants from their apartments late Tuesday were repaired by mid-afternoon Thursday and tenants were permitted to move back in.

“Everything is fixed,” said Dominic Marchionda, whose NYO Property Group owns the 13-story, 49-unit apartment complex at 34 W. Federal St.

Marchionda said local contractors installed insulation to plug exterior window gaps on the ground-level floor, covered only with plywood, which allowed below-freezing air to get into the building and freeze the standpipe and sprinkler systems and cause them to burst.

“They got the building thawed and the work was inspected and approved by the Youngstown Fire Department for tenants to return,” Marchionda said.

On Tuesday, Fire Chief John J. O’Neill ordered the Wick Tower evacuated because the damaged standpipes and sprinkler systems would have made fighting a fire very difficult and dangerous to residents and firefighters.

On Thursday, O’Neill issued a letter to the Wick Tower Suites manager saying necessary repairs were made and “verified and approved” by the Youngstown Fire Department Inspection Bureau, and that as of 3:30 p.m. that day building residents could return to their apartments.

In his letter, O’Neill extended the department’s appreciation to NYO Property Group representatives, building managers and contractors for their cooperation and diligence in resolving the problem “with organization and speed. We also thank the residents for their understanding and patience.”

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