Erie Terminal Building/Commerce Plaza Building
Backstory and Context
The Erie Terminal Building, constructed in 1923, was designed as a dual-purpose office building/railroad terminal. The building shows the deep roots that the railroad industry had in Youngstown. Youngstown was the only city between New York and Chicago where 4 trunk lines (main rail lines) converged. Local Architect Paul Boucherle designed the building. The Erie Terminal Building received financial backing from George. N. Harmony, as well as the Erie Railroad Company.
The Erie Terminal Building served two purposes throughout its lifetime. For one, it was a major terminal for the Erie Railroad/Erie-Lackawanna Railway during the height of passenger train use. The building also served as office buildings for the Erie Railroad Company as well as other local businesses. This style of building was copied by Cleveland’s Terminal Tower, constructed 8 years after the Erie Terminal Building, which also housed both offices and a passenger terminal.
The Erie Terminal Building continued to house both offices and the terminal until 1976 when the building was left vacant. The Erie Terminal building now houses apartments for Youngstown citizens. This project was developed by Dominic Marchionda who purchased the building in 2011 for $740,000. The restoration project was completed in August of 2012. Turning what was once a vacant building into a community hub.
Erie Terminal Building, https://www.ohiohistory.org. Accessed October 7th 2019. https://www.ohiohistory.org/preserve/state-historic-preservation-office/hpawards/past-recipients/2013-recipients/erie-terminal-building.
Nelson, George . Erie Terminal Place Ready for Tenants. The Business Journal. July 31st 2012.
Williams , Judy. Erie Terminal Building, Commerce Plaza Building . Ohio Historic Inventory . Published July 23rd 1986. Ohio Historic Preservation Office .