Neighborhood Street Lights Back On 24/7

 

 In April I posted how My Neighborhood’s Street Lights Are Always On, notifying the Citizens Service Bureau (CSB) via Twitter.  It was Service ID 1206799. I posted a follow up a month later once CSB clued me in on the issue — Neighborhood Streetlights Still On Because Electrical Station Is Blocked.  I figured …

Sunday Poll: Should Union Station Have Updated The Retail Mall & Food Court Rather Than Gut Them For An Aquarium?

 

 As you probably know the retail mall under the old train shed at St  Louis Union Station is gone. The former retail/food court space is being converted to an aquarium. The plan for the aquarium was announced almost three years ago. The other day I overheard a couple of people …

St. Louis Board of Aldermen: New Board Bills Week 13 of 2019-2020 Session

 

 The St. Louis Board of Aldermen will meet at 10am today, their 13th meeting of the 2019-2020 session. As previously noted, they have the first two meetings labeled as Week #1, so they list this as week/meeting 12. Today’s agenda includes six (6) new bills: B.B.#89 – J. Boyd – An Ordinance …

Readers: No Citizenship Question Should Appear On 2020 Census

 

 Despite being a hot national issue the question of a citizenship question on the 2020 Census got a low response on the recent non-scientific Sunday Poll: Q: Agree or disagree: The 2020 Census should include a citizenship question Strongly agree: 5 [23.81%] Agree: 0 [0%] Somewhat agree: 0 [0%] Neither agree or disagree: 1 [4.76%] …

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Sunday Poll: Should the St. Louis Workhouse Remain Open or be Closed?

April 21, 2019 Featured, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Should the St. Louis Workhouse Remain Open or be Closed?
 
Please vote below

For a while some have been pushing the City of St. Louis to close its Medium Security Institution, commonly known as the workhouse. Others have argued it can’t be closed because the downtown facility doesn’t have capacity to handle all inmates.

From September 2018:

In a report released Thursday morning by the Close the Workhouse campaign, organizers make their case as to why St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson, Circuit Attorney Kim Gardner and the St. Louis Board of Aldermen should shut down the facility at 7600 Hall Street, which holds roughly 550 people, the vast majority of whom are awaiting trial.

City officials say it isn’t feasible to close an institution that houses hundreds of people facing felony charges but add they are taking steps to reduce the jail population without risking public safety. They’ve also pushed back against recent complaints about jail conditions, offering reporters a tour of the facility in March. The building may be old, said Public Safety Director Jimmie Edwards at the time, but it is clearly functional.

The Close the Workhouse report says that contradicts the “unspeakably hellish” conditions former inmates, several of whom are now organizers, experienced while they were inside. (Post-Dispatch)

Debate about closing/not closing the workhouse, located at 7600 Hall St, continue.  This is the subject of today’s poll:

Today’s poll will close at 8pm.

— Steve Patterson

 

New Book — St. Louis State Hospital: A 150-Year Journey Toward Hope by Amanda Hunyar

April 19, 2019 Books, Featured, History/Preservation Comments Off on New Book — St. Louis State Hospital: A 150-Year Journey Toward Hope by Amanda Hunyar
 

In my 28+ years in St. Louis I’ve been in many buildings that interest me. One I haven’t seen inside of is the St. Louis State Hospital on Arsenal. It and the grounds have changed considerably in my decades here.

A few hardcover book from local publisher Reedy Press gives readers a greater understanding:

While the St. Louis State Hospital dome has loomed over the St. Louis skyline for 150 years, the goings-on behind the closed doors of this mysterious complex of South City buildings has been the subject of speculation and curiosity for generations. This fascinating book takes readers beyond the gates on Arsenal and into an institution’s unique history.

It was through those gates in 1869 that 127 patients suffering from mental illnesses would pass to seek recovery through compassionate care. This richly illustrated volume presents their stories through a timeline of the hospital’s history and gives an understanding of what life was like for these vulnerable, often poor and disenfranchised patients. Included are photos and anecdotes of weekly dances in the fifth-floor ballroom, card game parties, and long walks to newly opened Tower Grove Park. Straight from the carefully curated archives are the records of traditional lobotomies, experimental drug therapies, and electric shock—all prevalent treatments of their time.

Author Amanda Hunyar takes readers behind the scenes and through the history of the iconic building with a complex tale to tell. Once the third largest hospital in St. Louis, and a place of healing and hope for thousands, its stories from generations past are finally ready to be shared. Even those with merely a passing understanding of its buildings can now come to appreciate its importance in the history of our region. (Reedy Press)

This new book is by Amanda Hunyar. I’ve loved flipping through the photo-filled pages.

— Steve Patterson

Readers Opposed To Missouri National Guard Patroling St. Louis’ Worst Neighborhoods

April 17, 2019 Crime, Featured, Neighborhoods, North City, Politics/Policy Comments Off on Readers Opposed To Missouri National Guard Patroling St. Louis’ Worst Neighborhoods
 
Unfinished house on 22nd Street in the Hyde Park neighborhood, August 2016

Following a recent daytime shooting Ald. Brandon Bosley started a long-overdue conversation about taking back neighborhoods from criminal elements.

The boldness of the crime, on a sunny spring day as sports fans flocked downtown, just three miles south, led the neighborhood’s alderman to call for deployment of the Missouri National Guard before the summer hits and crime spikes.

“I’m done waiting,” said Alderman Brandon Bosley of the 3rd Ward. “Before it gets too bad, we need to do something measurable. Extra hands. Extra guns. Guns bigger than the ones on the street.”

Bosley said he and the city Board of Aldermen’s black caucus had been talking for weeks about petitioning Gov. Mike Parson. He said he hoped to persuade the board to pass a resolution calling on Parson to send troops to the worst city neighborhoods. (Post-Dispatch)

The conversation took place on Twitter after Post-Dispatch writer David Hunn sent out the following tweet about the story:

I read through some of the replies, many good points made. In general I don’t like the idea of military forces being brought in. On the other hand, though I do live in North St. Louis, I’m not in a neighborhood that’s experiencing the violence that a few areas are. I get it, Bosley and residents want something done. Now!

Maybe the Missouri National Guard is the answer, maybe not. I’ve said before a lot of our problems are long-term, requiring long-term solutions. Correcting inequalities would help, but that will take many years once started. Understandably, Bosley wants action before it gets hot out.

I wish I had the answer.

Here are the results of the recent non-scientific Sunday Poll:

Q: Should Gov. Parsons send the Missouri National Guard to help patrol the worst neighborhoods in the City of St. Louis?

  • Definitely not!: 11 [33.33%]\
  • No: 7 [21.21%]
  • Hmm, don’t think so: 3 [9.09%]
  • Neither yes or no: 1 [3.03%]
  • Hmm, I suppose: 4 [12.12%]
  • Yes: 5 [15.15%]
  • Definitely yes!: 2 [6.06%]
  • Unsure/No Answer: 0 [0%]

A clear majority oppose the idea of the National Guard.

A Doug Unplugged segment on the subject, not online at this time, missed the point entirely. KMOV’s DougVaughn liked the idea, saying the National Guard should be outside Cardinals games, etc. Bosley isn’t arguing for military to make suburbanites who venture downtown for a game to feel safe, he’s trying to help the people in his ward feel safe in their neighborhoods

— Steve Patterson

Board of Aldermen End 2018-19 Session Today, Begin 2019-20 Session Tomorrow

April 15, 2019 Board of Aldermen, Featured Comments Off on Board of Aldermen End 2018-19 Session Today, Begin 2019-20 Session Tomorrow
 
St. Louis City Hall

When the St. Louis Board of Aldermen are in session they typically meet at 10am on Friday mornings. Their last meeting was February 1st, breaking for Spring elections.

This week they’ll meet today & tomorrow, but not Friday. Today is the last day of the 2018-2019 session, known as Sine Die. Tomorrow is the first meeting of the 2019-2020 session.

Today’s agenda includes wrapping up legislation from the 2019-2019 session, final consent to many bills. Also on the agenda is a long list of courtesy  resolutions, political thank yous.

One is worth noting.

Res.#296 – Ingrassia – The Board of Aldermen wishes our colleague Scott Ogilvie much success in his future endeavors.

Scott Ogilvie decided not to seek a 3rd term, today is his last day as an Alderman. Terry Kennedy’s last day as an alderman is today, he also didn’t seek another term. Kennedy will become the Board’s new Clerk. Their replacements, and others re-elected, will be sworn into office tomorrow.

Friday morning meetings resume next week on the 26th or May 3rd, per today’s & tomorrow’s agendas, respectively.

— Steve Patterson

Sunday Poll: Should Gov. Parsons send the Missouri National Guard to help patrol the worst neighborhoods in the City of St. Louis?

April 14, 2019 Crime, Featured, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Should Gov. Parsons send the Missouri National Guard to help patrol the worst neighborhoods in the City of St. Louis?
 
Please vote below

In some St. Louis neighborhoods violent  crime is driving some to the breaking point, including 3rd ward Alderman Brandon Bosley.

From last week:

Bosley said he and the city Board of Aldermen’s black caucus had been talking for weeks about petitioning Gov. Mike Parson. He said he hoped to persuade the board to pass a resolution calling on Parson to send troops to the worst city neighborhoods.

“We’re going to have tanks on every damn corner,” Bosley said. “These people have to know we’re not playing anymore.” (Post-Dispatch)

This is the subject of today’s poll.

This poll will close at 8pm tonight, I’ll share my thoughts on Wednesday morning.

— Steve Patterson

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