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17th Street Connects Locust, Olive, Pine, Chestnut, and Market to Washington Ave

June 17, 2016 Downtown, Featured, Planning & Design, Politics/Policy 14 Comments

For years now I’ve tried to end the week on a positive note, but it’s becoming increasingly difficult for me to be optimistic about St. Louis’ future. Today is the final vote on BB64 to give public land to a developer, cutting off others from Washington Ave. The following image illustrates the potential problem.

Looking North toward Washington Ave from the WW corner of 17th & Locust St.
Looking North toward Washington Ave from the WW corner of 17th & Locust St.

Behind me is the massive Butler Brothers Warehouse, at left is 1701 Locust — both vacant and in need of rehab. At right is one of our two buildings at Printers Lofts, the 5,500 sq ft first floor is currently vacant and for sale. Cutting them off from access to Washington Ave will not help.

Looking North on 17th, a clear shot to Washington Ave if the old CPI dock was removed from the public right-of-way
Looking North on 17th, a clear shot to Washington Ave if the old CPI dock was removed from the public right-of-way
From the NE corner of 17th & Locust you can see the Post Office on the South side of Market.
From the NE corner of 17th & Locust you can see the Post Office on the South side of Market.

Voting yes on BB64 would be incredibly short-sighted sided.

— Steve Patterson

 

Currently there are "14 comments" on this Article:

  1. JZ71 says:

    Short-sighted or short-sided?

     
  2. Sgt Stadanko says:

    downtown st louis is doomed. if bad government isn’t enough, it is just a matter of time before you will fall victim to crime. sorry to be a “danny downer” but I lost faith a long time ago. thanks, Sarge

     
  3. Adam says:

    These old-guard aldermen need to be removed ASAP. That, or development decisions need to be taken away from them altogether. Marlene Davis’s attitude is unacceptable: “I’ve heard the reasoning against but I don’t care because people would have to walk 180 feet.” That was her actual response when News 4 asked to interview her (which she declined.)

     
    • gmichaud says:

      I saw her comment on tv, she is arrogant and certainly does not represent the interests of the people of her ward or the city. Hopefully someone like Steve will run against her next time.

       
  4. neroden says:

    So, I see from your Facebook feed that this was the last straw and you’re going to move away from St. Louis.

    We would welcome you in upstate (central & western) NY. We’ve got a lot of old, “rust-belt” cities with good 19th century bones which face similar challenges to St. Louis. But the politics of actually improving things are looking a lot more optimistic up here.

     
    • I’ve let go of the notion that St. Louis will become the city I’ve envisioned . I’m now disengaging with St. Louis — I’m mentally prepared to leave the city that’s been home since August 1990.

      Financially, however, we can’t afford to move — not at this point. Starting next week posting will go from 6 days down to 5 days — no Monday posts.

      Each week I’ll spend less time blogging and more time working on several ideas for novels. Will continue playing one $2 Powerball ticket once per month.

      Chicago is our favorite option right now, my husband was born there — moving away at like 8/9 years old. It’s ranked as one of the best cities for wheelchair users — we’ve seen the great job they do clearing snow off of sidewalk.

      I do want to have s meal at Moosesood in Ithica NY.

       
      • JZ71 says:

        The tough part about leaving St. Louis for any “better” city will always be financial. We have incredibly low housing costs here, especially compared to “good”, booming, attractive, “hot” places, like Chicago, Denver, SF, NYC, Austin or Portland. Good luck on chasing Powerball, but it wouldn’t hurt to check out job opportunities, especially in planning, elsewhere . . .

         
        • If we’d be able to move that means a) I’ve become a moderately successful novelist or b) we won the lottery. Either way, the job market wouldn’t be a concern. Pedestrian-wheelchair friendliness, public transit, high walk-score, etc would be a high priority.

           
      • neroden says:

        As a lifelong resident of Ithaca, I can say that Moosewood has gone pretty seriously downhill since the 1970s, so I can’t really recommend it any more. We do have a lot of awesome restaurants with farm-to-table food. And Ithaca’s getting more wheelchair accessible (the sidewalks used to be a wreck, but we got a new funding system in 2013 and they’re all getting fixed).

        Anyway, Ithaca’s got expensive housing, mostly because we grew, but we didn’t build any housing at all for 50 years — the current mayor is working on getting more apartment buildings approved. It’s pretty much the only city in upstate NY which has expensive housing, though — all the other cities (Buffalo, Rochester, Syracuse, Binghamton, Utica, Auburn, etc.) shrank over the same period and have gobs of cheap housing as a result. I can’t say that they’re wheelchair-accessible but it’s mostly due to lack of funding, not due to bad attitude. They’re all car-dependent but they seem to be more open to changing that than St. Louis! And there seem to be a fair number of jobs in urban planning, and there seems to be a lot of real estate development activity.

        Chicago’s a great city. My uncle lives there, so I visit regularly. Good-sized gay community if that matters to you. And they have been making great progress on wheelchair access. The only downside is that housing can be quite expensive.

         
  5. Mark-AL says:

    Well, if you’re considering a relocation, why not take the plunge and move to Frankfurt? In several categories, the cost of living there is comparable to Chicago, except that housing and over-the-counter medications are a bit higher. Bring along your jeans and Nike shoes, too, because you’ll have to float a loan to afford them in Germany. Food costs and utilities are comparable to STL. You can buy a VW for around $20K. It’s a vibrant, colorful city of great restaurants (average costs comparable to STL, Chicago.) The Romer is a historic building that has housed Frankfurt’s City Hall over 600 years. Interesting building. Anyone who appreciates older buildings could spend a week looking around the Romer. Excellent art museums. The Alte Oper (opera house) is of itself a work of art. If you enjoy botanical gardens, there’s the Polmengarten, which really can’t compete with Shaw’s Garden in STL, but few can. Lots of Japanese and Chinese visitors. The city proper is fairly ADA compliant, and they’re working on improvements as changes are made to the infrastructure. Many of the gay clubs are frequented by non-gays as well. There’s a gay club similar to STL’s Clementines (where my wife and I sometimes used to eat Prime Rib on Friday or Saturday evenings when when we lived in STL) , and like at Clementines, straights feel comfortable at the Frankfurt clubs. You can easily get by in Frankfurt if you don’t speak German. My three sons have learned the language quickly, but I spend so little time there that I haven’t, but I’ve never had a problem communicating. If you live in the city, you won’t even need a car. Why not take a big bite of the apple?

     
    • We may never be able to afford to relocate — we’re just both mentally prepared. I’m going to devote more time to the four novels I’m working on. If we get to the point where we could afford to relocate, we’d travel to many cities as part of our research.

       
      • Mark-AL says:

        Just write a best-seller, and then you’ll be able to afford to live anywhere you fancy. It’s simple.

         

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