Auto Parkit owner asks Warren officials for patience - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Auto Parkit owner asks Warren officials for patience

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WARREN TWP., Ohio -

Work on the new Auto Parkit facility in Warren continues to be delayed and while frustrations in the city are starting to mount, owner Christopher Allen is asking Warren city officials and residents for patience.

"I want them to know that I didn't create the eyesore and if you look at all of the money that we've put in, the buildings that are closed up, I mean you've got a complete contrast right here, right," said Allen. "You can see that we've already invested a significant amount of money and you know what our intent is, so we're taking the mess that you see behind me and we're creating new buildings that are going to house new workers and bring revenue to the city to create a better community."

The old Delphi Packard Electric plant in Warren remains littered with piles of scrap metal and garbage.

Allen, who announced two years ago plans to buy the property for his Auto Parkit company, says the company that owns this property has now filed for bankruptcy.

"The sellers filed bankruptcy in an effort to stay the sale of the property or whatever other reason I guess you could think about and now it's going through a process of litigation and it's holding up everything," said Allen.

Allen gave Warren City Council members a tour and update on the project and asked to them to remain patient.

"I need the community to understand the scenario that we have here and it's been a blight on the community for 10 years and it's just going to take a little bit of time to get to where we all want it to be," said Allen.

Warren Mayor Doug Franklin says the city will stay committed to Allen and the plant that is expected to bring in 750 to 1,000 jobs. 

"It's a huge undertaking and lot of times progress is inconvenient," said Franklin. "No one else is going to come in and clean up this site so we have a viable investor that we need to keep working with."

Despite all the challenges over the past two years and an investment of $1.8 million dollars already, Allen says he has no plans to cut his losses. 

"My dad worked 42 years for Packard. His first job when he got back from the Korean War was at this facility. My mom's first job ever was at this facility. The livelihood that Packard Electric provided for my dad, who came from a poor family in a coal town in Pennsylvania, is what helped give me the life experience that got me to where I am today and I'm trying to repay that commitment," said Allen.

Allen is hoping the litigation will be resolved in six months. 

He also purchased the former General Electric building across the street. That building gives Auto Parkit a place to begin operations with small fabrication, basic testing of individual components and some assembly of equipment.  

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