Review panel OKs funds for  businesses
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Review panel OKs funds for businesses

Apr 12, 2023

Apr 5, 2023

YOUNGSTOWN — The city's design review committee approved exterior improvements to nine businesses that allow them to get grants from Youngstown's facade program, as well as for two projects to receive money from the small business loan fund.

The $150,000 loans for P&L Metalscrafts LLC of 1050 Ohio Works Drive and Penguin City Brewing Co. LLC of 460 E. Federal St. were the first two awarded to companies through the $2 million small business revolving loan program established in December by the city using American Rescue Plan funds.

The design review committee approved projects for the loans and nine facade program grants at Tuesday's meeting.

The committee had previously approved six other facade grants.

The city in December put $1 million of its ARP funds into the facade program and allows eligible companies to seek up to $20,000 to help pay for the cost of exterior improvements.

As a condition of getting the grants and the small business loans, companies have to receive permission from the committee for projects. For the facade grants, companies have to show they are paying at least half of the cost of the work being done.

The facade grants are forgivable loans with a five-year term. Every year a business remains open at their location, 20 percent of the loan is forgiven until it reaches 100 percent at five years.

The small business loans, up to $150,000, are for a minimum of five years with an interest rate below current prime.

P&L Metalcrafts is undergoing a $170,000 improvement project and borrowing $150,000 from the city program. The work includes new windows, an awning, stone veneer, gravel for a parking lot behind the building and asphalt for a lot in front of the building.

Penguin City is planning a $245,160 project for a storm water system, concrete curbing and an asphalt parking lot. It is also seeking to borrow $150,000.


Of the nine proposals approved Tuesday for facade grants, four were up for consideration at the March 7 committee meeting, but the votes were delayed.

• $20,000 to Mr. Rooter Plumbing of Youngstown, 2755 Salt Springs Road, which is planning a $117,500 project including paving and excavation work.

• $20,000 to JAD Rentals, 324 N. Fruit St., which proposed $42,500 worth of work to make various exterior improvements for Albert Street Grill, a sandwich shop.

• $20,000 to Destiny Auto Sales, 1583 Mahoning Ave., for a $103,000 project including blacktopping a parking lot, adding security fencing, lighting and signage, roof work, adding a security system and seal coating.

• $20,000 to Palm Cafe, 301 Steel St., for a $48,421 project that includes a new steel front door, landscaping, power washing and painting the building, replacing cracked sidewalk and a security system.

Also Thursday, the committee approved a $20,000 grant for the replacement of 42 windows at the Rica Building, 117 S. Champion St. The committee last month approved the window replacement project and the owner, Michael Huber, then went back and requested the facade grant.

The new requests approved Tuesday were:

• $10,000 to Sure Line Inc., 904 Tod Ave., to install a fence around the property and clean and paint the building at a cost of $20,189.

• $19,125 to Jeffrey Chrystal Catering, 2315 Belmont Ave., for a four-foot-by-eight-foot aluminum sign mounted on a 12-foot pole. The sign cost $38,430.

• $20,000 to Youngstown CityScape for its CityScape at Briel's location at 23 S. Belle Vista Ave. for a $40,917 project that includes replacing stone veneer on the exterior and a storefront.

• $14,750 to Hackett's Pub, 1597 Mahoning Ave., for $29,450 in improvements including replacing a fence, paving an asphalt parking lot and painting a mural on the building.

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