Coitsville Township is looking toward the future, and leaders are considering a significant zone change to attract business. 

Along State Route 422, also known at McCartney Road in the township, a significant portion is zoned for commercial and industrial use. But just beyond the Hubbard Road line, the approximately two-mile stretch heading toward Pennsylvania, it's a mixed bag of residential, agricultural and commercial.

During a meeting Tuesday night, township officials told about a dozen property owners along the highway that they are considering a zone change to make the entire stretch east of Hubbard Road "commercial." Officials noted that the street is a four-lane highway with increasing traffic.

"The ultimate question is will someone desire to build a single-family dwelling in one of those residential zones, or does it make planning sense to zone that entire corridor commercial," said Zoning Inspector Michael Kurilla, Jr.

By rezoning the 36 parcels of land to "commercial," officials hope to attract business development and also potentially pave the way for the county to extend sewer and water along the stretch of highway.

Some residents in attendance expressed support and noted that the zone change would not force them to move.

But, not everyone felt that way.

"I'll pack up and leave. The first one that goes up there, my house will be for sale, and I'll be gone," said resident Jim Pinka.

Pinka questioned why township officials felt they could attract business to the area when other sections of SR 422 that are already zoned for business have business and properties that still sit empty.

"I don't know why the Coitsville Township people think they're going to move business up the highway and into the middle of nowhere, in the country, if they can't even bring a business into the city of Youngstown into the Lincoln Knolls area," said Pinka.

A decision by trustees on whether to rezone may not come until after the first of the year.