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Twenty-Fourteen In 63 Pictures

December 31, 2014 Featured, STL Region Comments Off on Twenty-Fourteen In 63 Pictures

The end of another year…so for the last post of 2014 I’ve selected 63 images from the 800+ I uploaded throughout the year. Enjoy, please be patient as they load.

JANUARY

Fields Foods at 1500 Lafayette Ave
Fields Foods opened at 1500 Lafayette Ave without pedestrian access, this was soon corrected after my post
14th St @ Washington Ave.: Stones pavers & concrete removed so a new bus shelter can be built.
14th St @ Washington Ave.: Stones pavers & concrete removed so a new bus shelter can be built.
At Taylor I noticed this new storefront because it stood out from how it looked for years
At MLK & Taylor I noticed this new storefront because it stood out from how it looked for years
Pipes burst in the YMCA/Centenary Tower building
Pipes burst in the upper floors of the YMCA/Centenary Tower building
Work was still wrapping up on the Tucker project
Work was still wrapping up on the Tucker project
The Treasurer's office began testing different parking meters
The Treasurer’s office began testing different parking meters

FEBRUARY

The Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge opened, thus was seconds after Illinois Gov Quinn & Missouri Gov Nixon cut the ribbon
The Stan Musial Veterans Memorial Bridge opened, thus was seconds after Illinois Gov Quinn & Missouri Gov Nixon cut the ribbon
The St. Louis flag turned 50 as the city turned 250
The St. Louis flag turned 50 as the city turned 250
The wrap on the new buses looks like the original
The wrap on the new low-floor downtown trolley buses looks like the original

MARCH

IDOT officials held an open house at the Jackie Joyner Kersee Center in East St. Louis to get input into speeding up Amtrak from Alton to St. Louis
IDOT officials held an open house at the Jackie Joyner Kersee Center in East St. Louis to get input into speeding up Amtrak from Alton to St. Louis
Some members of the First Presbyterian in Edwardsville IL opposed the sale of the property to the school district, the church would be leveled for parking. The congregation has worshipped on the same site since the early 19th century
Some members of the First Presbyterian in Edwardsville IL opposed the sale of the property to the school district, the church would be leveled for parking. The congregation has worshipped on the same site since the early 19th century
Looking west toward Morgan Ford
New bike lane & pedestrian zone on Chippewa, looking west toward Morgan Ford
The Castle Ballroom in midtown was damaged in a storm, later razed.
The Castle Ballroom in midtown was damaged in a storm, later razed.
The property to the north had a gate that blocked the public sidewalk, it was later removed
The property to the north had a gate that blocked the public sidewalk, it was later removed
It was announced a park was planned for the north side of the Eads Bridge, to the right of the trucks parked in the alley,
It was announced a park was planned for the north side of the Eads Bridge, to the right of the trucks parked in the alley,
To prep for a new Civic Center bus transfer facility, all the trees were cut down
To prep for a new Civic Center bus transfer facility, all the trees were cut down
Fields Foods pedestrian access
Fields Foods pedestrian access problem corrected
Metro showed of the first of  15 articulated buses they would receive in 2014, mostly for use on the #70 Grand route
Metro showed of the first of 15 articulated buses they would receive in 2014, mostly for use on the #70 Grand route
City police had out of town journalists park on the sidewalk during a basketball tournament because...homeland security
City police had out of town journalists park on the sidewalk during a basketball tournament because…homeland security
6th ward residents checked out the Participatory Budgeting project expo
6th ward residents checked out the Participatory Budgeting project expo

APRIL

On April Fool's Day I got many people with the announcement of a Trader Joe's at Grand  & Olive
On April Fool’s Day I got many people with the announcement of a Trader Joe’s in a new mixed-use building at Grand & Olive
Inside the "Live" area of Ballpark Village the day before the home opener
Inside the “Live” area of Ballpark Village the day before the home opener
I proposed returning 9th & 10th north of Washington or Cole into two-way streets
I proposed returning 9th & 10th north of Washington or Cole into two-way streets
Schnucks closed their North Grand location
Schnucks closed their North Grand location
After two years of not having a car, my then-fiancé and I bought a used car together.
The east facade of the branch of the St. Louis County Library which was planned to be demolished after a new library was built.
The east facade of the Lewis & Clark branch of the St. Louis County Library which was planned to be demolished after a new library was built.
On April 29th major equipment was ripping out the unloved center planters  on 13th Street between St. Charles St & Washington Ave
On April 29th major equipment was ripping out the unloved center planters on 13th Street between St. Charles St & Washington Ave

MAY

I took at look at the dire economic disinvestment in the north county area at Chambers & Lewis & Clark
I took at look at the dire economic disinvestment in the north county area at Chambers & Lewis & Clark
I convinced Culinaria to stop filling the entire sidewalk in front of their 9th Street grocery store with cafe tables
I convinced Culinaria to stop filling the entire sidewalk in front of their 9th Street grocery store with cafe tables
Plans for the new Civic Center MetroBus transfer facility were made available.
Plans for the new Civic Center MetroBus transfer facility were made available.

JUNE

David and I exchanging our vows on Sunday June 8th, officiated by our friend Chris Reimer.
David and I exchanging our vows on Sunday June 8th at the Malcolm Martin Memorial park in East St. Louis, officiated by our friend Chris Reimer.
Our reception was brunch at Bevo Mill, Lydia S. drove us in her Tesla.
Our reception was brunch at Bevo Mill, Lydia S. drove us in her Tesla.
The Melvin Price Locks & Dam celebrated 20 years
The Melvin Price Locks & Dam celebrated 20 years
I took a look at the unincorporated area of North County known as Spanish Lake, the Belle Parke Plaza strip mall shown here
Five years since Citygarden opened
Five years since Citygarden opened in 2009

For July through December click more below.
… Continue Reading

 

We Have Many Police Departments In St. Louis

This post is intended to help out headline writers from outside the St. Louis region. Last week many said St. Louis Police when they meant St. Louis County Police.

Recent headlines
Recent headlines all attributing a mistake to the St. Louis Police, rather than the St. Louis County Police

Not their fault, they likely don’t know our long history of fragmentation.

The St. Louis region is in two states — Missouri & Illinois. Sixteen-seventeen counties, half per state, make up the Greater St. Louis area. The St. Louis Police was originally formed in 1808. In 1861, during the Civil War, the Confederate-supporting state took control of the St. Louis Police since the city was pro-Union. St. Louis only got back full control from the state in the last year or two.

In 1876 the rapidly-growing City of St. Louis left St. Louis County, to avoid having to support the rest of the then largely rural county. St. Louis, through changes to the Missouri constitution, became an independent city-county. The City of St. Louis, as a city-county, also has a Sheriff’s department.

St. Louis County Police was formed in 1955, absorbing the St. Louis County Sheriff at that time.  You might think the St. Louis County Police patrol all of St. Louis County, but no. St. Louis County has 90 municipalities. Some, like Ferguson, have their own police force. Others, like Jennings, contract through St. Louis County. Jennings used to have its own force, but it was dissolved in 2011. A few other municipalities contract through a neighboring municipality for police services. Unincorporated areas of St. Louis County are, as you’d expect, covered by St. Louis County Police. One tiny municipality, Flordel Hills, recently started its own police force.

With 884 individual units of government, St. Louis ranks 3rd only to Pittsburgh and Denver among our peer regions in ratio of local governments to citizens. (Where We Stand)

I’m not sure how many of the 884 units of government are police, regardless, the St. Louis Police is different than the St. Louis County Police.

— Steve Patterson

 

Returned To The City: Mercedes-Benz Dealership

October 30, 2014 Featured, Retail, STL Region 9 Comments

After nearly a two decade absence (see Last Downtown St. Louis Auto Dealership Closed in 1995), a Mercedes-Benz dealership is once again located within the City of St. Louis.  Two more exist in the region, one in St. Louis County and one in St. Charles County. None in the Metro East.

Mercedes-Benz of St. Louis opened recently at Hampton Ave. & Clayton Ave., I stopped by for a visit earlier this month.

The new Mercedes-Benz of St. Louis at Hampton & Clayton
The new Mercedes-Benz of St. Louis at Hampton & Clayton

Before we take a closer look at the finished dealership, we need to revisit the before and during.

KTVI's studios previously occupied the site. October 2012
KTVI’s studios previously occupied the site, not remotely urban. October 2012 photo
By July 2013 the old KTVI building had been razed, the site fenced. August 2013 photo
By July 2013 the old KTVI building had been razed, the site fenced. August 2013 photo
The steel structure for the main showroom going up in February 2014
The steel structure for the main showroom going up in February 2014
View from Hampton
View looking north along Hampton
View looking east along Clayton
View looking east along Clayton
View from near the east-facing showroom entrance, looking down the accessible route to the Clayton Ave public sidewalk
View from near the east-facing showroom entrance, looking down the accessible route to the Clayton Ave public sidewalk. See Mini of St. Louis, it is possible to comply in a graceful way!
Inside the showroom
Inside the showroom
Southern view of dealership. Service work is done in the level below the showroom. Customers drop off their cars on the main level though...
Southern view of dealership along Berthold Ave. Service work is done in the level below the showroom. Customers drop off their cars on the main level though.
Customers dropping off or picking up their Mercedes-Benz do so up on the main level, but visiting the parts department requires a short flight of stairs that lack handrails. The grade change on Berthed Ave would've permitted an accessible entry.
Customers dropping off or picking up their Mercedes-Benz do so up on the main level, but visiting the parts department requires a short flight of stairs that lack handrails. The grade change on Berthed Ave would’ve permitted an accessible entry.

For nearly 20 years this dealership, then called TriStar Imports, was located in suburban Ellisville at 16360 Truman Rd Ellisville, Missouri 63011.  Their old location is listed for $4.5 million. The far west county demographics just weren’t what they hoped they’d be.

Welcome back!

— Steve Patterson

 

Some Positive Changes In The Last Ten Years

October 17, 2014 Featured, STL Region Comments Off on Some Positive Changes In The Last Ten Years

In the last decade of blogging I’ve posted about the positive change that’s taken place in our region, it was fun looking back at the headlines of thousands of posts.

For today I’ve selected a positive post from each calendar year of this blog:

Here’s one example, the former St. Louis Centre mall:

Looking east along Washington Ave from 7th, February 2006
Looking east along Washington Ave from 7th, February 2006. Demolition of the oppressive St. Louis Centre bridge began in May 2010.
Same view yesterday
Same view yesterday, not only was the bridge over Washington Ave removed but so was the portion of St. Louis Centre that was over the sidewalk. St. Louis Centre opened in 1985.

Lots more great things happened in the city & region. Next Friday I’ll list some of the bad things from this same period.

— Steve Patterson

 

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