YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Three months ago, Kelli Way spoke before Youngstown City Council about problems at her apartment building downtown, International Towers. Way described drug problems, an HVAC system that didn’t work and people dying and not being found for weeks. Now, because of what she said that night, the situation is getting better.

The 15-story International Towers is a low and moderate-income apartment building on Central Square.

“Before, the only thing I liked about living here was my apartment. But I think my mind is changing a little bit now that we have people down here to keep those people out,” Way said.

Way says since her speech before city council, she and three others have formed what’s called the Go-Getters Tenant Association

International Towers is owned by Millennia Companies of Cleveland. There are 173 units. There have been improvements.

“They got two security people in February. They got our heating and cooling systems working as well in February. They have added a couple of security cameras in areas in which there weren’t,” Way said.

Way says people who were causing problems have been evicted and the management is working to get better tenants.

“So there’s not a lot of the criminal activity as well as the drug activity, which is still going on, but they’re trying to rid it,” Way said.

A big problem remaining is that the windows leak when it rains. Way hopes to have a solution to that problem soon.

“Whenever it rains, we still have water coming in and down our windows from the roof as well as in the windows,” Way said.

Way has been pleased with the cooperation from Millennia’s management. She realizes the problems will take time to fix. She also appreciates the help from city council and the mayor’s office.

“I hope the city continues because I do think if people don’t work together and there’s no follow-up by those people we started it with, it’s going to go back to the same thing,” Way said.

We received a statement from Millennia Companies that stated they are working closely with Way “to ensure a positive environment.” They’re doing quarterly inspections and people are regularly walking the halls to increase visibility. Nothing was mentioned about the water leaking into the windows. Their full statement is below.

“The property management team has continued to implement sound management practices (such as quarterly inspections) and to work closely with resident leader Ms. Way to ensure a positive environment for the International Towers community.

Recently, two concierge team members have been added to the team, and there is a position posted for a third. In addition to facilitating quarterly inspections (a process that was paused during the pandemic), each member of the property management team is assigned to walk various floors of the building throughout the day to increase their visibility and note any issues that need promptly addressed. Additionally, the team has added security cameras.

The International Towers team values the partnership of Ms. Way. Ms. Way has provided leadership for residents and liaised with senior leaders for many years; her dedication to strengthening the International Towers community is appreciated.”