19 04, 2016

Shepherd Begins $7M Expansion of Poland Campus

By | 2018-02-12T16:57:18-05:00 April 19th, 2016|Categories: Archived|Tags: , |

POLAND, Ohio – A $7 million expansion at Shepherd of the Valley’s campus here could be completed in nine months, earlier than officials had anticipated even a few days ago.

A ground-breaking ceremony took place Thursday afternoon for the 32-bed, short-term rehabilitation unit, which will add 24,645 square feet addition to the existing assisted living center.

Contractors “told us 12 months [earlier] but now they’re talking nine months,” said Danielle Procopio, corporate director of marketing, sales and communications for Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Retirement Services Inc.
Mark J. Dodd, senior vice president of DeSalvo Construction Co. in Hubbard, general contractor on the project, said the company hopes to begin layout and surveying next week. “About two weeks after that we’ll start foundation work and begin the process of construction,” he said.

The schedule is “fairly aggressive,” he acknowledged, “but we feel that with a nice summer that we can get it done in plenty of time before the end of this year,” he said.

The addition was designed by Baker, Bednar, Snyder and Associates in Howland, the architectural firm that designed the Poland and Howland facilities and worked with Shepherd to renovate the Boardman campus.

The intent is to provide the “full continuum of care for our residents that live on this campus,” said Richard Limongi, Shepherd of the Valley executive director. With the addition of the rehab center, residents who require short-term therapy will be able to receive it without having to leave the campus. “They can come here, receive all of the rehab that they need and go back to their previous setting,’ he said.

The Poland campus has 57 assisted living residents and 59 independent residents. The expansion would add 30 employees to the existing workforce of 58.

“The concept and the design of our project is all based on person-centered care,” Limongi, said. “It’s getting away from the institutional feel of your typical nursing home.”

The expansion’s three “neighborhoods” will each house 10 to 12 residents, with each room having its own full bathroom. Among the features of the expansion, which will add 24,645 square feet to the existing independent living center, will be a 1,964-square-foot therapy room with an “endless pool,” Limongi said.

“It’s going to have a treadmill on the bottom so the residents that are in for rehab will be able to actually walk on a treadmill in the pool,” he said. Other features will include a main dining hall, chapel, happy hour lounge area and outdoor patio.

“We want our clients to be able to age in place,” remarkeKaren Bovard,president of Shepherd’s board of directors.”

“Several of our residents are in need of physical therapy and they can be right here getting that close to home,” remarked Bill Wade, a 12-year resident of the Poland campus.

A former Youngstown city councilman, Wade resides in the independent living section and is president of the campus’ residents association.

“There have been cases where the residents have gone to hospitals and then they go to rehab at another location, so it’ll be beneficial to all the residents here,” he said.

Copyright 2016 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.

19 04, 2016

Buzz Builds for Town Center Project

By | 2018-02-12T16:57:18-05:00 April 19th, 2016|Categories: Archived|Tags: , , |

From the Younstown Business Journal:

COLUMBIANA, Ohio – As the steel skeletons of the first phase of Town Center at Firestone Farms go up, developer Tom Mackall has a vision for his hometown of Columbiana.

It’s one that both honors the most famous resident of Columbiana – Harvey S. Firestone, founder of Firestone Tire and Rubber Co. – and expands the city economy by adding higher-end shopping, dining and office space, even hotels and concert venues somewhere down the road.

“We still want it to be a little town, but with the things a modern economy has,” Mackall says. “There’s not much in Columbiana County, so people go to Boardman, which gets tiresome with the traffic. We hope to be a retail destination for southern Mahoning County and all of Columbiana County.”
No tenants for the 200-acre center have been announced, but about a third of the space in the shopping center has been leased, according to Mackall. So far there’s been about $10 million committed to construct Town Center, on the northeastern quadrant of the intersection of state routes 7 and 14, and the full project is expected to take about a decade. Phase One is scheduled to open in September.

“I hope we can get to a point where we’re introducing something new every year,” he adds.

Throughout the complex, visitors will see sections that profile the life and times of Firestone, born at the site in 1868, to “preserve his history as a business icon.

“He’s one of the greatest businessmen in the history of the country. It’d be like having Bill Gates living in your neighborhood,” Mackall says. “He’s that iconic in our history. He thrived despite the Great Depression and got out debt-free.”

The ultimate goal of Town Center is offering services to meet every need in Columbiana and the county. In short, Mackall envisions it as the next hot spot of economic development.

Sean Carney, partner at Gallagher Clark & Carney Realty Group, notes that expansion in Boardman and North Lima, and the resulting increase in traffic, makes it more challenging for Columbiana residents to head north to shop.

That’s one of the biggest factors that could contribute to the success of Town Center, he notes. There’s also a draw for those who live in the southern half of Columbiana County and Lawrence and Beaver counties in Pennsylvania, he says. They wouldn’t have as long a drive.

“If you live in between, it’s more convenient with less traffic to come out this way, says Carney, whose firm is working with Mackall. “There’s a lot of interest to do grocery shopping locally, even go to restaurants locally rather than going to Boardman.”

Across town, reports Columbiana Area Chamber of Commerce President Ginny Perkins, business owners and shoppers alike seem to be excited about Town Center opening.

The northern end of town, around the intersections of state routes 14, 46 and 164, is home to car dealerships, Das Dutch Village Inn and its hotel-shopping combination, and chain stores. The central business district is home to an ever-growing population of specialty shops and long-standing antique and gift shops.

The Town Center, Perkins expects, will fill a gap between the two – high-end shops and local boutiques.

“Columbiana is a well-integrated town where the separate pieces work well together. You won’t have to drive too far in any direction to hit what you need and want,” she says.

Among those pieces are a developing industrial sector, Carney says, a growing population and the city’s proximity to the Ohio Turnpike and state Route 11, “which can get you anywhere.”

Reichard Industries recently expanded its plant near downtown to accommodate increasing business. Vivo Brothers Inc., which produces cabinetry and architectural millwork, will move from Poland into the plant most recently used by Global-Pak. The city industrial park is at capacity.

Demand is so great for industrial space, Perkins says, that the chamber and city are looking at opening a second industrial park.

For business owners, there’s a fear of the unknown, Perkins says. This level of economic development is new to Columbiana. Yet the uncertainty about what will happen next is offset by the excitement of the anticipated benefits.

“People already like coming here and I think

[Town Center] will make people enjoy it even more. There’ll be more to do,” she says.

In addition to helping established businesses by drawing in new customers, the city benefits, Mayor Bryan Blakeman says, because more visitors bring more tax dollars. But the true benefit is to consumers, he says, following the same line of thinking as Perkins and Carney.

Mackall is taking care to make sure that what opens is not only viable but also complements the city’s other business districts. Carney says the developer has done market surveys for each potential store in an effort to get only those that will be guaranteed successes.

In addition, he’s taking care to not intrude on the other business districts or take away from businesses there. From Blakeman’s perspective, the offerings will be sufficiently diverse that each shopping district has a clearly defined target audience.

“I don’t see downtown suffering at all. I see the opposite. The offerings over there are different from what’s down here,” he says. “Downtown is a historic business district with a lot of boutique shops. That’s a lot different from what you’ll find at Town Center.”

And Mackall is performing due diligence to ensure the difference is understood as well. Town Center at Firestone Farms has started a Facebook campaign to highlight small businesses around town and show just what Columbiana has to offer.

“We want people to understand that Columbiana is a destination, whether it’s downtown or at Firestone Farms,” he says. “There are many interesting venues that people can visit.”

Copyright 2016 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.

13 04, 2016

Construction of retail space in Columbiana ahead of schedule

By | 2018-02-07T16:46:47-05:00 April 13th, 2016|Categories: Archived|

COLUMBIANA, Ohio (WKBN) – Eight months into construction, the brick façade is already up on the first phase of  Town Center at Firestone Farms at Routes 7 and 14 in Columbiana.

“We were able to do a lot of things over the winter…we’re ahead of schedule,” said Developer Tom Mackall.

He says two more buildings are included in his ten year plan. They will be built in a circle surrounding a courtyard and a 40-foot-tall clock tower. Mackall says the design was based on what downtown Columbiana would have looked like 85 years ago when Harvey Firestone lived there.

“Each of the store fronts is designed to look as it was built by a different businessman, and has his own unique character. We’re trying to duplicate that.”

Recently, developers hired a company to fly a drone over the property. They posted the photos on social media, boosting interest in the project.

“It seems like that has been our best method of advertising, to get people who might be interested in leasing space from us,” Mackall said.

Although the renderings of the development may resemble Columbus’ “Easton” or Pittsburgh’s “Southside Works,” the initial focus is on attracting medical and other official tenants with about a third of the space already filled.

“As a destination, it’s just the office is…going to be a little easier upfront to lease,” said Associated Commercial Real Estate Agent Al Ricks.

The very first office tenants could move in starting this summer, occupying the western side of the building. Mackall says the next phase could begin this fall with additional retail and restaurant space.

Plans eventually call for a separate shopping area to be called “The Marketplace,” built just south of Route 14.

12 04, 2016

Shepherd of the Valley to Break Ground on Poland Addition

By | 2018-02-07T16:46:57-05:00 April 12th, 2016|Categories: Archived|Tags: , , , , |

POLAND, Ohio – Shepherd of the Valley – Poland will break ground Thursday to build a 32-bed rehabilitation and skilled nursing unit.

Construction should be completed in about a year, said Danielle Procopio, corporate director of marketing, sales and communication for Shepherd of the Valley Lutheran Retirement Services Inc., Austintown.

“In the Youngstown-Warren area, we have a lot of people that are aging and are looking for rehab opportunities as well as skilled nursing,” she said. “We wanted to build a new facility at Poland to have state-of-the-art rehab facilities within our continuum.”

About 1,800 square feet of the 26,000-square-foot addition will be specific to therapy, Procopio added. All of the rooms will be private, with their own pool baths.

The rehab section, which will have a gym and therapy pool, will be available on an outpatient basis as well as to residents.

The general contractor on the project is DeSalvo Construction Co., Hubbard.

Other features will include a new chapel, outdoor patio area and “happy hour” lounge, Procopio said. “We wanted to make sure we were thinking about the residents’ lifestyle and creating social experiences as well as getting them healthy,” she remarked.

A short program beginning at 2 p.m. will be followed by the ceremonial ground breaking. Those in attendance will have the opportunity to tour several independent living homes and the assisted living building.

Copyright 2016 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.
2 02, 2016

Construction continues at TownCenter at Firestone Farms

By | 2018-02-07T16:47:29-05:00 February 2nd, 2016|Categories: Archived|Tags: , , , , |

Thanks to great weather, the brick work and carpentry have been able to proceed on schedule.  Visit to find out more about this new project in Columbiana, Ohio

4 01, 2016

New Columbiana retail center under construction

By | 2018-02-07T16:47:37-05:00 January 4th, 2016|Categories: Archived|Tags: , |

From WKBN 27

COLUMBIANA, Ohio – People who regularly use the intersection of State Routes 7 and 14 in Columbiana may have noticed a new shopping plaza being constructed.

Tom Mackall, originally from Columbiana and now living on Lake Milton, owns what will be called the Town Center at Firestone Farms. He says the project will be ongoing.

“It’s going to take 10 years to do everything,” he said. “I liken it to Cedar Point. We’re going to try and open something new every year.”

At the site on Thursday, pieces of the steel frame were being cut and hung. While in another section, some of the facade was being put in place.

Mackall said the exterior of each building will be unique.

“It’ll look as if each individual place was built kind of like the old downtowns, where one doctor or somebody would have a certain style brick and then next door to that would be a little different style,” he said.

Since no leases have yet been signed, Mackall would not be specific about what businesses are going in.

“There will be multiple restaurants and a grocery store, a hardware store, shops. Also offices. Anything a small town would have,” he said.

He hopes one of the restaurants is Firestone-themed. The grocery store will go across the street and won’t open until 2018.

Mackall, who owns the East Fairfield Coal Company, also owns 884 acres on the corner. The mineral rights were leased — seven wells drilled — and the money is what is paying for the construction.

“Now we have a sufficient revenue stream here to help back us in doing this development,” Mackall said. “The revenue stream will make the payment on this building by itself, without any tenants here.”

Eventually, there will be three buildings at the location, surrounding a town square anchored by a clock tower.

Mackall talked a lot about the legacy of Harvey Firestone — the tire baron born in Columbiana. In fact, he said he hopes a Firestone museum will eventually be part of the project.

“They’re in the process of making this look like it’s Columbiana in the 1930s, when Harvey Firestone had this as a farm,” he said.

8 12, 2015

First Step Recovery in Warren is finding new ways to help patients find their path to a sober life

By | 2018-02-12T16:57:18-05:00 December 8th, 2015|Categories: Archived|Tags: , , |

Baker Bednar Snyder & Associates is proud to have served as the architects for First Step Recovery’s Offices in Warren, Ohio.

From WFMJ:

WARREN, Ohio –
Less than a year after opening its doors, Trumbull County’s first stand alone center for fighting the heroin epidemic is growing.

As many addicts come to learn, becoming clean often doesn’t end with a stint in detox, that’s why First Step Recovery in Warren is finding new ways to help patients find their path to a sober life.

“There’s been tremendous growth here at First Step in a very short period of time, I think that, that’s a response to the needs of the community,” said Cindy Woodford, CEO of First Step Recovery.

At least 1,000 patients enrolled in detox programs at First Step Recovery since its grand opening in May. Instead of returning to the pressures of their past lives, the center now offers a way to stay focused and clean.

New dorms opened in the fall, which can hold up to 16 men and 16 women at a time.

With a limited number of detox beds in the county and across the state, Nick Schroeder, a recovering heroin addict, had to search for somewhere to find help. He traveled from Ashtabula to find the treatment he was desperately looking for.

“I wasn’t that ideal member of society,” Schroeder said.

He began abusing alcohol and marijuana around age 11. Schroeder then turned to prescription pills. It wasn’t long before he tried heroin and was hooked.

“That’s when I fell in love, because it controls those feelings,” he said. “It becomes your coping mechanism,” he said.

He says drugs helped him deal with tough times. Schroeder came from a broken home, he moved often throughout his childhood and he admits he didn’t have many positives influences in his life.

While kicking his heroin addiction wasn’t easy, Schroeder says that now he’s on the other side of treatment, he’s not looking back.

“It sounds crazy to a lot of people, I’m almost grateful that it happened to me, because it opened up so many doors, it opened up this opportunity to absolutely better myself.”

Schroeder’s been clean for six months.

First Step Recovery is also helping former addicts like him with intensive outpatient programming, which is offered down the street at the old Enta Building off of Youngstown Road SE. News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

12 11, 2015

Howland superintendent says reorganization will ‘homogenize’ district

By | 2018-02-07T16:48:14-05:00 November 12th, 2015|Categories: Archived|Tags: , |

Andy Bednar, an architect with Baker, Bednar, Snyder and Associates, described the need for a ramp or elevator at North Road Elementary because it is two stories tall. He said H.C. Mines also needs more restrooms and a covered walkway.


From the Vindicator:


Several officials from Howland local schools unveiled a reorganization plan Wednesday that Superintendent Kevin Spicher says is intended to “homogenize” – equalize – the district’s four elementary schools.

“We’ve always had a perception that there were two sides of town,” said Spicher, who graduated from Howland in 1986. He said everyone in the school district needs to “feel good about being educated in Howland, no matter what side of town you’re in.” In Howland’s case, it’s a north-south division.

Currently, students in the northern part of the township attend Howland Glen for kindergarten to grade 2 and H.C. Mines for grades 3 to 5. Students in the southern part of the township attend Howland Springs for kindergarten to grade 2 and North Road Elementary for grades 3 to 5.

The plan being proposed calls for students in grade 1 to attend Howland Springs, grade 2 at Howland Glen, grades 3 and 4 at H.C. Mines and grade 5 at North Road. Kindergarten would be split between Howland Glen and Howland Springs because there isn’t enough room for all to be together, Spicher said. Programs such as cognitive disabilities would remain at their present site.

Twelve-year board member Scott Lehman said he “totally agrees” with the reorganization.

“I have felt for many years we would be better if we could have our kids go through their whole school career together,” he said.

Another reason to combine students of the same grade level into one building is to improve administrative efficiency because they all would have the same principal, Spicher said.

The plan would not affect the middle school or high school, would involve only modest changes to the elementary buildings and is intended to become effective with next school year, Spicher said.

Bid and Buy
Spicher said the change will not cause students to have longer bus rides than now or increase transportation costs.

Kindergarteners next year will attend a full day, Spicher said. Howland is the only district in the county with half-day kindergarten now, he said.

The reorganization also will eliminate the need for any of the four trailer classrooms now in place at the North Road school and four trailer classrooms at H.C. Mines.

The project would be paid for with existing funds and would not involve an additional levy, Spicher said. He didn’t know how much the reorganization will cost, he said.

Implementation of the plan will begin as soon as early 2016 with the bulk of the move occurring next summer unless there is an “outcry from the community,” Spicher said.

The plan was written after receiving input from the community through surveys and conversations, but a community committee also is being formed to review the plan, Lehman said.

Andy Bednar, an architect with Baker, Bednar, Snyder and Associates, described the need for a ramp or elevator at North Road Elementary because it is two stories tall. He said H.C. Mines also needs more restrooms and a covered walkway. But neither of those will be completed in time for next school year, Spicher said.