NEWTON FALLS, Ohio (WYTV) – There is new hope for a historic building in Newton Falls that’s been closed for more than three years.
“We were thrilled to hear the news,” said Lisa Hoerig, president of the Newton Falls Preservation Foundation.
City manager David Lynch says it’s his goal to reopen the community center on E. Quarry Street through a deliberate and responsible process.
“I think working with private organizations that want to partner with us, there’s a way we can save the building — preserve its historical features, restore the building — and do it in such a way that we don’t make a burden on the taxpayers,” Lynch said.
Before it closed at the end of 2015, more than a dozen groups and organizations called the Newton Falls Community Center home.
“It served so many different functions and served so many people and the seniors really enjoyed getting their exercise, meals and transportation here. So it was really important for that part of the community as well,” Hoerig said.
There’s a lot of history inside the building’s walls. The center was built by the U.S.O. in the 1940s.
The city closed its doors citing a lack of funding.
Since then, it’s been recognized as a historic building by the state and listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
“It’s a huge part of our community,” Hoerig said.
Now, Lynch is inviting organizations to submit proposals for a partnership to help restore the building and operate it.
“Our service in government is to respond to the needs of the citizens and there’s been an outcry as it relates to this building,” Lynch said.