Regional Chamber, City of Niles Look To Redevelop Properties To Spur Growth

May 01, 2017
The Regional Chamber and City of Niles have launched an aggressive property redevelopment program using a recently completed Youngstown State University study. The study, spearheaded by volunteers from The Avenue & Main community group and completed by YSU’s Regional Economic Development Initiative, identified abandoned and tax-delinquent properties throughout the city. The Regional Chamber’s Economic Development team and city leaders are now engaged in positioning those parcels for future economic growth.
The Regional Chamber and City of Niles have launched an aggressive property redevelopment program using a recently completed Youngstown State University study.

The study, spearheaded by volunteers from The Avenue & Main community group and completed by YSU’s Regional Economic Development Initiative, identified abandoned and tax-delinquent properties throughout the city. The Regional Chamber’s Economic Development team and city leaders are now engaged in positioning those parcels for future economic growth.

“The study and subsequent program will enable us to put these properties back onto the tax rolls,” Niles Housing and Zoning Code Enforcement Officer Jeff Crowley said. “In some cases, this means repopulating the city with an influx of young homeowners. In other cases, it means creating opportunities for commercial and industrial development.”

The redevelopment program is part of the customized economic services that Niles is receiving from the Chamber through a special contractual agreement.

Along with identifying properties that meet a broad range of company requirements, the city and Chamber are exploring various county and state resources to make the parcels more attractive for investors. The resources could include an expansion of the Trumbull County Planning Commission’s Community Reinvestment Areas, use of the Planning Commission’s Tax Increment Financing program or possibly state and federal resources available through the Eastgate Regional Council of Governments. These efforts will also include the creation of new programs to support a broader range of investment.

The Planning Commission completed the 2003 Niles Comprehensive Plan that the city and Chamber will use to help shape the city’s vision for the future. The plan will provide guidance for local decisions that will position the city for an increase in economic development opportunities. Among the goals would be to improve road and utility infrastructure to meet business demands.

“This is the ongoing prep work that is required to ensure the future success of any community,” said Regional Chamber Senior Vice President of Economic Development Sarah Boyarko.

“Available properties, local economic development resources and an aggressive approach are keys to winning a deal,” she added. “If you don’t have your ducks in a row for a rapid response or proactive approach, it’s very challenging to secure an investment. The competition is very real.”