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Poll: Would You Support A 3/16¢ Parks/Arch Sales Tax Increase

ABOVE: The final piece of the Gateway Arch was set into place on Thursday October 28, 1965

In November voters in St. Louis, St. Louis County and St. Charles County may be asked to approve a 3/16¢ sales tax increase:

An obscure bill moving through the Legislature includes a provision that would allow residents to vote — possibly in November — on raising sales taxes in St. Louis, St. Louis County and St. Charles County by three-sixteenths of a cent (0.1875) for the Arch project and other area parks. (STLtoday.com)

The CityArchRiver group and Civic Progress say the sales tax revenue is needed to pay off bonds to complete planned improvements to better connect the Arch to the city. Much of the money would fund parks in each taxing jurisdiction:

Susan Trautman with the Greenway District says only 30 percent of the tax would go to the Archgrounds. The rest would go towards improving local and regional parks and trails.


The tax increase would only last 20 years and collect enough money to pay for a $120 million bond issue to help pay for the project. (KMOV)

Voters in Illinois may also be asked to support a small tax increase as well. This is the subject for the poll this week — the poll is located in the right sidebar.

– Steve Patterson


Currently there are "6 comments" on this Article:

  1. jimb says:

    Terrible park – would only vote “yes” if STL could get the 40 sq blocks back.

  2. JZ71 says:

    Tax dollars are fungible, ultimately they all come out our pockets, directly or indirectly.  I think the improvements fo the Arch grounds are a good thing, but I’m opposed to a separate tax to fund them.  Our elected officials are supposed to be making the hard decisions in balancing revenues and expenditures.  We simply can’t continue to add a new tax for every pet project or good idea.

  3. GMichaud says:

    I have to agree jimb, it is a terrible park. It’s like taking a great public square, say Piazza San Marcos in Venice, and surrounding it with parking lots and highways instead of attractive architecture. It would be useless square then wouldn’t it? So goes the Arch.  Maybe they should just let cars drive all over the Arch grounds, why worry about people?
    The tax is supposed to help correct this situation, but I’m not sure. The underlying problem is the rest of the city is being designed for the automobile. When the city outlines a better approach to urban design in general then support might make sense.
    There should be some sort of transit/waking zoned areas, certainly the corner of Grand and Chouteau is one. If the city is known to commit to effective transit, it becomes more desirable for everyone, including developers.
    I submit that the regional leadership has failed miserably, I personally have no confidence in the current leadership. The completely foolish suburban style solution by SLU at Grand and Chouteau indicates an overall poor performance by regional and local governments. This means the money spent on the Arch will be wasted, its value diminished by poor decision making. They are already wasting huge public investments in transit by allowing SLU build a heavily auto orientated project.

  4. Stlplanr says:

    Not without a commitment to remove the freeway.

  5. Moe says:

    I’m amazed that St. Louisians think the Arch park is terrible, but yet it is one of the most visited and recognizable parks in the Country!  A person never realizes the good in their own backyard.  It is a national park so on one hand, yes, the federal government should supply the funds needed to inprove/upgrade. But having said that, the Arch brings in so much to the City and surrounding communities…we have an obligation to ourselves to help when and where we can. It will only benefit us in the long run.

    Would I approve of a tax?  Yes and No….Yes if they would get the other surrounding counties to step up to the plate.  Why did they not ask Jeff County or the Illinois counties to step up to the plate???? Visitors drive through those areas to get to the County and City!!!!!! 

    I’m so tired of supporting my institutions (Zoo, Museums,Forest Park, etc) and having Jefferson Countians and the other non-payers come in and then do nothing but complain about the parking, security, leaving trash and yada yada yada.  I would love it if those institutions finally start charging for non-residents!!!!!

    • Msrdls says:

      I agree that admission to the zoo, museums, (yes)Forest Park, Science Center should be paid by all those who currently do not pay taxes which directly support those venues. When our boys were younger, we often visited the San Diego Zoo, and in my opinion the St Louis zoo compares very favorably by comparison. At the San Diego Zoo, we paid $15.00 for each of the two boys, and 18.50 each for myself and for my wife. Over $60.00 just to get through the door! Locals don’t appreciate the value that the City of St. Louis offers its residents, including those who are not even residents. It’s time for local Illinos and Jefferson County residents, and all those other out-of-state vacationers, etc to pay their fair share.


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