Youngstown secures 2nd bid for the redevelopment of 20 Federal Place | News, Sports, Jobs
YOUNGSTOWN – The city has received a second formal proposal to purchase and redevelop the downtown 20 Federal Place building, more than two weeks past the deadline.
Although the official deadline is June 1, and the city received a proposal from the Downtown Development Group in Warren on that day, there is a line in the RFP document stating, “Proposals received after the date limit will be reviewed until a redeveloper is selected. “
Desmone Architects of Pittsburgh, who had expressed interest in the project and requested more time to deliver a formal proposal, was submitted on Wednesday, said Doug Rasmussen, president and CEO of Steadfast City Economic and Community Partners, the St. Louis firm hired to design and oversee the redevelopment of 20 Federal Place.
“Since a redeveloper has not yet been selected, another company could submit and if they did, the city would have the right to decide whether they want to review / consider said proposal or not,” Rasmussen said.
He added: “At this point I am not expecting any further proposals. “
Mark Marvin, president and owner of Downtown Development, said, “The city’s decision is beyond my control. I don’t think that makes it a fair process when a deadline is created and not met, but it’s the city’s decision and not mine. As previously stated, I will let the process unfold and if we are (not) chosen I wish the remodeling team good luck and look forward to seeing their finished product.
Rasmussen said the initial timeline for selecting a redeveloper for the project remains with interviews in July and August, city council presentations in August and a company selected that month. An agreement would be reached by October.
The project has already encountered some problems.
Hunter Morrison, the city’s planning consultant, initially told a reporter that no formal proposals had been submitted for the project by the June 1 deadline. Downtown Development and Desmone had only expressed interest and wanted more time to come up with formal proposals, he said.
After reading a June 6 article in The Vindicator about the lack of formal proposals, Marvin reached out to a reporter and city officials to question why his company’s bid was not viewed as such.
After speaking with Morrison and reviewing company documents, the city’s legal department determined that Downtown Development had filed a formal proposal and apologized for the miscommunication.
Marvin also said he was concerned that “there would be a deadline, and the city then extended it,” and if other companies come forward with proposals, Downtown Development could “adjust our thinking process and think if we were going to go ahead with our proposal ”.
Downtown Development Group has renovated properties in Warren including the Robins Theater, the Mahoning Building and CharBenay’s Wine on the River.
Desmone is largely an architectural firm and has collaborated with other companies on projects.
The city’s legal department declined to provide the proposals citing the revised Ohio code that documents given “in response to a competitive solicitation will not be considered public record” until “the date on which the civil service announces contract award “or chooses not to award one.
The city purchased 20 Federal Places in November 2004 after the bankruptcy of Phar-Mor, a national retail store company. The property at 20 W. Federal St. was the Phar-Mor Center, the corporate headquarters. Before that, it was the flagship location of the Strouss department store for several decades.
The city has made several unsuccessful attempts to sell the 332,000-square-foot, 95-year-old building.
Last year, the Appalachian Regional Commission awarded a $ 40,000 contract to Steadfast City to provide technical and marketing assistance to the city for 20 Federal Place.
Steadfast presented a $ 34.5 million rehabilitation proposal for the downtown building in March with apartments mixed with offices on the top four floors, an improved food court on the first floor and tech companies, small businesses and meeting space on the second and third floors with a bowling alley, bar and malthouse in the basement.