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Rethinking the North Grand Corridor for Jobs, Economic Opportunity

April 21, 2014 Featured, North City, Planning & Design 4 Comments

Grand Boulevard is one of, if not the most, important north-south streets in St. Louis. It connects north & south St. Louis to the east-west central corridor.  It carries our busiest MetroBus route, the #70.

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North Grand at 20th, click for map

After visiting the soon-to-close Schnucks at Grand & Kossuth last week it occurred to me the North Grand corridor could benefit from some comprehensive planning to bring needed jobs, housing, retail, etc to north St. Louis. This post isn’t a comprehensive solution it’s an introduction to the idea of concentrating efforts in a linear fashion along Grand north of Delmar.

POSITIVES:

  1. Despite massive population loss in the city, especially north city, the areas near Grand remain populated, in-part because of the #70 MetroBus route.
  2. The #70 MetroBus route will get five (5) higher-capacity articulated vehicles starting in June, by the end of summer all 12 will be articulated.
  3. Vacant land ready to build on.

NEGATIVES

  1. Few major institutions to help build support
  2. Numerous problems: crime, poverty, unemployment, aging infrastructure & building stock
  3. Lack of hope

We could list more negatives, as well as positives. In fact, taking stock of the area is a good first step.

Looking north from Grand & Delmar, click for map

Bringing real jobs to this area won’t be easy. I don’t think we should just sit back and watch as jobs and people continue to leave the area. This is a chance to do some grassroots planning.  Done right North Grand can have a more prosperous future.

 — Steve Patterson

  • guest

    What new thinking? Is this post done?

    • I’m working on future posts to continue the idea of concentrating on a single corridor.

      • gmichaud

        While the specifics of what happens on Grand would be an interesting discussion, North Grand does not exist in a vacuum. One of the major problems of the region is the failure to understand and include the big picture. This is especially true of transit, but includes all aspects of development.
        Yes Grand is a heavily traveled corridor, that’s true, but how does that impact getting around the rest of the city, and/or the county?
        Isolating North Grand from the rest of the city makes it difficult to find a sustainable solution.
        As a side note I drove on Manchester between hwy 270 and hwy 141 today, St. Louis is such an environmental disaster. No provision for transit, pedestrians, bicycles, nothing, nothing but autos, and we wonder why there is global warming. The worse part is we continue on our merry way as if nothing is happening.

        • wump

          thats west county genius, it was built for cars, avoid it, dont go there

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