YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WYTV) – Construction is underway for a new Veterans Administration (VA) clinic on Youngstown’s north side. Local veterans say this is an important project that is long overdue.
Work on the Belmont Avenue site started weeks ago, but a year from now, the lot will home to a new area clinic for the Veterans Administration, replacing one just up the street.
“We’re probably doing a groundbreaking ceremony,” said Delmas Stubbs.
Stubbs and Leo Connelly, both with the Mahoning County Veterans Service Commission, said the new clinic will be almost twice as large as the existing facility, which serves about 10,000 people a year. It will include expanded mental health services with more privacy for patients.
“I think it’s important for those veterans to, including myself, when we may go and see our psychologist or whatever have you, to have some privacy when we do that,” Stubbs said.
The new clinic will have 38,000 square feet of space and more than 250 parking spaces. But, board members hope to have close access for those using transit services to get to the clinic.
“To most people, five or 10 steps aren’t much, but to somebody like myself that has bad legs or a gentleman who has lost his legs in the war, those steps are important,” Connelly said.
Connelly and Stubbs said they were able to lobby the VA to get things like handrails and other equipment for those with agility issues and even an area to walk service animals.
“That’s one of the concerns that came up from a veteran in the community and you know, it’s a viable concern. So we pushed it forward,” Stubbs said.
The current facility has been in operation since 1993.
The developer on the new project was awarded $24 million to build and operate it for the next 20 years.
Members of the VA Outpatient Clinic Advisory Board said they’re looking to hear from other area veterans who have questions or concerns about the new facility, or problems with their local VA services.
The current VA clinic is located at 345 Oakhill Ave., Suite 100 in Youngstown. The clinic can be reached at 330-740-2451 or through a contact form online. Just go to the righthand side of the webpage and click the Contact Us Form.