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Mansion House Center 50th Anniversary

April 29, 2016 Downtown, Featured, Urban Renewal 1 Comment

During the Urban Renewal era St. Louis leveled much of downtown — chasing away residents, businesses, shoppers, workers, etc. By the mid-1960s blocks and blocks of once-vibrant land began to get new structures. In October 1965 the top piece of the Arch was set into place. A couple of weeks before Busch Stadium II opened, a new residential project opened: Mansion House Center.

The Mansion House center faces 4th Street, 2011 photo
The Mansion House center faces 4th Street, 2011 photo
A plaque next to the center fountain lists those involved and the date -- April 29, 1966. Photo from April 2011
A plaque next to the center fountain lists those involved and the date — April 29, 1966. Photo from April 2011

It was everything good & bad about 1960s modernism. On the plus side it had clean lines and quality materials. On the negative, it rejected the public sidewalk & street grid. Cars stored in the massive, but confusing, garage faced the new Arch. One level up from the public sidewalk, a private promenade level sought to remove residents from the street.

As I’ve said before, the three towers are good. It’s the low-rose platform base & garage that need to be reworked. Olive & Locust need to be reopened. The East face needs to be connected to a future boulevard. The center is divided among multiple owners, so the likelihood of a project to undo the anti-city aspects is slim.

— Steve Patterson

 

 

Currently there is "1 comment" on this Article:

  1. backprop says:

    I’m of the opinion that it would still look hideous even if it didn’t destroy the street grid and ruin the sidewalks.

     

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