Youngstown board signs an agreement with company to work on environmental projects

By David Skolnick


The city’s board of control signed a letter of interest with a Chicago organization to work together on environmental projects.

The letter, approved Thursday by the city board, states the agreement “is not designed to create or constitute any legally binding obligations between the two parties.”

With the cooperation of the city, Fresh Coast Capital would be permitted to develop projects on city-owned land to provide “environmental, social and economic benefits to the community and generate adequate financial returns to attract private investment,” according to the agreement.

“We’re looking at [potential] vacant city land and have them use it in different [environmental] ways,” said city Law Director Martin Hume, a board of control member.

Fresh Coast focuses on environmental projects on vacant land in urban areas.

Earlier this year, Fresh Coast came to an agreement with the city to plant numerous poplar trees at three largely vacant park areas: Stambaugh Field and Gibson Field’s lower section on the South Side, and Tod Field on the North Side. The company provided the funding for the effort.

The trees reduce the use of the city’s stormwater system and the company takes care of mowing the grass in that area, said Robert Burke, the city’s park and recreation director.

It will take about 12 years for the trees to grow and be harvested, Burke said.