St. Louis Board of Aldermen, New Board Bills Week 5 of 2018-2019 Session

 

 The St. Louis Board of Aldermen will meet at 10am today, their 5th meeting of the 2018-2019 session. It appears I missed numerous new bills last week, they were: B.B.#53 – Kennedy – An Ordinance adopting the 2018 International Building Code with amendments, including Appendices E, F, G, H, I and …

Technical Issues Yesterday; One Year Anniversary of Kiener Plaza This Coming Saturday

 

 Yesterday something went haywire, crashing the site. When it did work the poll didn’t appear. I’ve pulled yesterday’s post since only two readers were able to vote. I’ll have a new post on Friday, my usual on new Board Bills being introduced at the Board of Aldermen. If all goes …

St. Louis Board of Aldermen, New Board Bills Week 4 of 2018-2019 Session

 

 The St. Louis Board of Aldermen will meet at 10am today, their 4th meeting of the 2018-2019 session. Last week Board Bill 47 wasn’t on the published agenda, but it was introduced for a first reading. Here’s the summary: An Ordinance directing the Director of Streets to change the 3200 block …

Opinion: St. Louis’ Government Structure Has Failed City/Region and Generations of Most Vulnerable Residents

 

 Construction on St. Louis’ city hall began in 1890, completed in 1904. The design reflected the form of government the city had at that time: When City Hall was designed, St. Louis had a bicameral form of government similar to the Missouri Legislature. The building originally had chambers and meeting …

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St. Louis Board of Aldermen Week 34 of 2017-2018 Session

February 16, 2018 Board of Aldermen, Featured Comments Off on St. Louis Board of Aldermen Week 34 of 2017-2018 Session
 
St. Louis City Hall

The St. Louis Board of Aldermen will meet at 10am today, their 34th week of the 2017-2018 session.

NEW BOARD BILLS ON THE AGENDA* FOR INTRODUCTION TODAY 2/16/18:

*Note that just because a bill is on the agenda doesn’t mean it’ll be introduced, similarly, bills not on the agenda might be introduced if they suspend the rules to do so. This information is based on the published agenda as of yesterday @ 8am:

  • B.B.#260 – Vaccaro – An Ordinance establishing a four?way stop site at the intersection of Pernod and Childress regulating all traffic traveling eastbound and westbound on Pernod at Childress and regulating all traffic traveling northbound and southbound on Childress at Pernod, and containing an emergency clause.
  • B.B.#261 – Roddy –An Ordinance recommended by the Tax Increment Financing Commission to amend the City Foundry Saint Louis Redevelopment Plan and Redevelopment Project areas by amending the Redevelopment Plan by: (1) combining Redevelopment Project areas 2 and 3 into a new Redevelopment Project area 2; (2) revising the boundary between Redevelopment Area 1 and the new Redevelopment Area 2; (3) changing the use in new Redevelopment Area 2 from residential to retail and office; (4) revising the financing plan to remove Tax Abatement as an Incentive in Redevelopment Area 2; and (5) activating the new Redevelopment Area 2; establishing the City Foundry Saint Louis RPA2 Special Allocation Fund; making findings with respect thereto; authorizing certain actions by City Officials; and containing a severability clause.
  • B.B.#262 – Roddy –An ordinance affirming adoption of the City Foundry Saint Louis RPA2 Redevelopment Plan, the RPA2 Redevelopment Area and the RPA2 Redevelopment Project, authorizing the execution of a Redevelopment Agreement between the City and FOPA, for the City Foundry Saint Louis RPA2 Redevelopment Project; designating FOPA Partners, as developer of the RPA2 Redevelopment Area; and containing a severability clause.
  • B.B.#263 – Middlebrook –An ordinance authorizing the execution of a Cooperation and Community Benefit Agreement with Discovery Pier Land Holdings, authorizing reimbursement in Accordance therewith, and containing a severability clause and an emergency clause.
  • B.B.#264 –Guenther –An ordinance approving a Redevelopment Plan for the 3450 Wisconsin.
  • B.B.#265 – Davis – Honorary street name for, Elder Bernie Lee Thompson.

The meeting begins at 10am, past meetings and a live broadcast can be watched online here. See list of all board bills for the 2017-2018 session.

— Steve Patterson

Readers Would Prefer A Less Commercialized Valentine’s Day

February 14, 2018 Featured Comments Off on Readers Would Prefer A Less Commercialized Valentine’s Day
 

In the recent non-scientific Sunday Poll more than half of the responses supported a more traditional celebration of Valentine’s Day over the current commercialized day.

Q: Agree or disagree: Valentine’s Day has become too commercialized, we should return to a traditional celebration.

  • Strongly agree 5 [21.74%]
  • Agree 5 [21.74%]
  • Somewhat agree 4 [17.39%]
  • Neither agree or disagree 3 [13.04%]
  • Somewhat disagree 0 [0%]
  • Disagree 3 [13.04%]
  • Strongly disagree 1 [4.35%]
  • Unsure/No Answer 2 [8.7%]

But what does “traditional” mean?

The history of Valentine’s Day, legend says, originated during the third century in Rome. During this time, Emperor Claudius II decided that single men made better soldiers, so he outlawed marriage for young men. A young priest named Valentine was furious with this injustice and defied Claudius by continuing to perform marriages for young lovers in secret. Claudius eventually discovered Valentine’s actions and sentenced him to death (not quite the fate of those who fail to buy their significant others flowers on Valentine’s Day, but clearly a lesson to be learned from history!).

During his time in jail, Valentine fell in love with his jailer’s daughter, who visited him in prison. Before he was put to death, Valentine sent a letter to the girl and signed it, “From Your Valentine” — an expression we still use today. Valentine was executed on February 14, 270 AD. Later, around 496 AD, Pope Gelasius declared Feb. 14 a day to honor Valentine, who by that time had become a saint. (ProFlowers)

The above is the sanitized version, here’s more detail:

From Feb. 13 to 15, the Romans celebrated the feast of Lupercalia. The men sacrificed a goat and a dog, then whipped women with the hides of the animals they had just slain.

The Roman romantics “were drunk. They were naked,” says Noel Lenski, a historian at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Young women would actually line up for the men to hit them, Lenski says. They believed this would make them fertile.

The brutal fete included a matchmaking lottery, in which young men drew the names of women from a jar. The couple would then be, um, coupled up for the duration of the festival — or longer, if the match was right. (NPR)

Here’s one way to look at it:

Given that Valentine’s Day is a creation of the sentimental Victorian era and based on the flimsiest of traditions, rooted in an obscure reference by Chaucer to the saint’s day of an obscure early martyr who had no known interest in love or romance, it is surprising that, according to the US Greeting Card ­Association, about 1bn Valentine’s cards are sent throughout the world each year, fewer only than at Christmas. This must be due to the huge exploitation of Valentine’s commercial possibilities, especially in the US. Even a staid old newspaper such as the New York Times runs dozens of articles about what to do, what to buy, what to eat and how to behave on Valentine’s Day. It also defers to the modern sexualisation of a festival that, in Victorian times, was seen as a celebration of innocent love, often ­involving children. (The Guardian)

 

My husband and I usually have leftovers on Wednesday night, but tonight we’re going out — to a place he’s never been before. Today is also the 37th wedding anniversary of my oldest brother and his wife — congrats to them.

— Steve Patterson

 

First Stainless Steel Triangle of Gateway Arch Set Into Place 55 Years Ago

February 12, 2018 Featured, History/Preservation, Parks, Planning & Design Comments Off on First Stainless Steel Triangle of Gateway Arch Set Into Place 55 Years Ago
 
Looking toward the Arch from 4th Street, July 2014

Fifty-five years ago today “the first stainless steel triangle that formed the first section of the arch was set in place on the south leg” of the Gateway Arch. Demolition of 40 blocks of old buildings and original street grid of the original village of St. Louis had begun nearly a quarter century earlier — in 1939.  The idea of completely erasing the riverfront and starting over began following the 1904 World’s Fair.

On April 11, 1934, lawyers filed incorporation papers for the new Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Association. Its charge was to develop “a suitable and permanent public memorial” to President Thomas Jefferson along the city’s dingy riverfront.

Its leader was Luther Ely Smith, who always seemed to be in the middle of noble endeavors. He would guide the riverfront project through Depression and war, a massive land-clearance and a top-flight design competition. He would be praised as the founding father when St. Louis selected as the suitable memorial Eero Saarinen’s idea for what would become the Gateway Arch. (Post Dispatch)

Luther Ely Smith (June 11, 1873 – April 2, 1951) didn’t live long enough to see the Arch even started, though he knew which design had been selected from the competition.

Not surprising St. Louis continues to honor people like Smith, someone who created a massive hole in the center of the city for decades. As chair of the City Planning Commission he hired Harland Bartholomew, who also pushed for massive destruction of the city & street grid — widening the remaining streets and opposing new rail transit.  See Harland Bartholomew negatively impacted many cities.

— Steve Patterson

Sunday Poll: Should We Return To A More Traditional Celebration of Valentine’s Day?

February 11, 2018 Featured, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Should We Return To A More Traditional Celebration of Valentine’s Day?
 
Please vote below

Wednesday is Valentine’s Day — a holiday celebrated around the world — in very different ways. Here, it’s about gifts. From a year ago:

Valentine’s Day spending is expected to drop 7.6% this year to $18.2 billion from last year’s $19.7 billion, according to the latest annual survey form the National Retail Federation and Prosper Insights and Analytics. It turns out that 9% fewer people plan on celebrating the occasion.

“Valentine’s Day continues to be a popular gift-giving occasion even if consumers are being more frugal this year,” NRF President and CEO Matthew Shay said. “This is one day of the year when millions find a way to show their loved ones they care regardless of their budget. Consumers will find that retailers recognize that their customers are looking for the best deals and will offer good bargains just as they did during the holiday season.”

Once again it looks like department stores will have their hearts broken. They are the favorite shopping destination for Americans purchasing Valentine’s day presents. The average spending per person is expected to drop from last year’s $146.84 to $136.57. Discount stores are the second choice, while online shopping comes in at third. (Forbes)

This year it looks like spending will rebound.

Apparently, most Americans won’t be celebrating Valentine’s Day by offering their sweetheart a heart-shaped box of chocolates from the grocery store and a cheap bouquet of flowers. Instead, the 55% of Americans who say they plan to celebrate the holiday are estimated to spend, on average, $143.56, according to an annual survey by the National Retail Federation (NRF) and Prosper Insights & Analytics. That’s up from last year’s $136.57.

Total spending will hit $19.6 billion, according to the survey, a dramatic increase from the $18.2 billion spent last year. The 2018 number, however, won’t quite break the record of $19.7 billion set in 2016, when the average was $146.84, for a $19.7 billion total. (The Motley Fool)

Today’s poll is about Valentine’s Day:

This poll will close at 8pm.

— Steve Patterson

St. Louis Board of Aldermen Week 33 of 2017-2018 Session

February 9, 2018 Board of Aldermen, Featured Comments Off on St. Louis Board of Aldermen Week 33 of 2017-2018 Session
 
St. Louis City Hall

The St. Louis Board of Aldermen will meet at 10am today, their 33rd week of the 2017-2018 session.

NEW BOARD BILLS ON THE AGENDA* FOR INTRODUCTION TODAY 2/9/18:

*Note that just because a bill is on the agenda doesn’t mean it’ll be introduced, similarly, bills not on the agenda might be introduced if they suspend the rules to do so. This information is based on the published agenda as of yesterday @ 8am:

  • B.B.#257 – Guenther ? An ordinance approving a Redevelopment Plan for 3434 and 3436 Indiana.
  • B.B.#258 – Middlebrook ? An ordinance approving the Petition to Establish the Gateway Land Community Improvement District.
  • B.B.#259 – Oldenburg ? An ordinance amending Ordinance No. 68481, approved November 9, 2009, for the purpose of prohibiting smoking within one?hundred (100) yards of any Park Playground, except in those areas in which smoking is not regulated under Ordinance No. 68481, and containing an emergency clause.

The meeting begins at 10am, past meetings and a live broadcast can be watched online here. See list of all board bills for the 2017-2018 session.

— Steve Patterson

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