STL Downtown Multimodal Study Engagement Week Begins Today


 Today kicks off a week of events, from the Facebook Event page: You’re invited to join the City of St. Louis as we talk about the future of our Downtown transportation system. Join any of these half-day workshops. We hope you are able to attend and take part in the …

Sunday Poll: Was Justice Served In The Stockley Verdict?


 On Friday a judge finally issued his ruling on the murder trial of a former St. Louis police officer. Stockley, then a St. Louis officer, fatally shot Smith, 24, after a police chase in December 2011 over a suspected drug deal. After he pleaded not guilty to a murder charge, …

St. Louis Board of Aldermen: Board Bill #122


 Last week the St. Louis Board of Aldermen introduced twenty (20) new Board Bills. Today. only one. ON AGENDA* FOR INTRODUCTION TODAY 9/15/17: *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 …

Readers: OK To Raze For Amazon’s HQ2


 Last week Amazon announced it planned to build a second headquarters somewhere in North America. Every Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) of at least 1 million people is likely interested in attracting Amazon. That’s roughly 50 regions just in the US, the St. Louis region is 20th in size on this …

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One Building On Locust Being Renovated While Another Awaits Demolition

September 1, 2017 Downtown, Featured, History/Preservation Comments Off on One Building On Locust Being Renovated While Another Awaits Demolition

Over 4 years ago the then-owner of a couple of buildings at 10th & Locust wanted to raze them for a hotel driveway for the 3rd building, the tallest. Many objected, the city’s Preservation Board repeatedly said no to demolition.

In June 2013 the first two buildings were threatened with demolition.

I’ve not followed the current project, but work is underway at at least two of the three.City records show a demolition permit was issued on 8/17/2017 for the 3-story on the NE corner of 10th & Locust (923 Locust St.), with the later Tudor-revival facade. The exterior isn’t original to the building, but it’s important to have massing on this corner.

For a while now all 3 have been behind a construction fence.
Workers can be seen weekdays

Hopefully a new building will be built on the corner, ideally taller — at least as tall as the adjacent building being rehabbed.

— Steve Patterson

Opinion: St. Louis Feral Cat Outreach Has Best Interests of Rally Cat

August 30, 2017 Featured Comments Off on Opinion: St. Louis Feral Cat Outreach Has Best Interests of Rally Cat

Thankfully the volunteers at the non-profit St. Louis Feral Cat Outreach were able to find and trap the cat known as “rally cat” since running across the field during a Cardinals game on August 9th.

St. Louis Feral Cat Outreach is a 501c3 organization (tax-exempt nonprofit). We’re a resource page for trappers, caretakers/feeders, and cat lovers dedicated to Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR) in St. Louis, MO and surrounding communities. The page is managed by several trappers and colony/caretakers and we believe that TNR is the best and most effective approach to cat overpopulation.

Our goal is to reduce the feral cat population in St. Louis, MO and surrounding communities while improving the quality of life for both cats and humans. High-volume use of low-cost or free spay-neuter services to sterilize feral, semi-feral, stray and domestic cats will help us achieve this goal.

Feral cats are wild animals, not domesticated pets. They’re also called community cats:

Community cats are not adoptable and shelters rarely will accept them. The fact is, most community cats exhibit wild, shy or frightened behavior, and it’s impossible to predict how or if they will ever acclimate to indoor life. While a community cat might look exactly the same as a pet cat, community cats survive by avoiding close human interaction. When properly cared for, community cats are happier outdoors in their own territory.

Some semi-community cats are actually stray cats who don’t exhibit quite the same shy behavior as the majority of community cats. Occasionally, these cats are born in the wild but, for no particular reason are less fearful of humans than is typical. Many semi-community cats lack the knowledge to survive on their own, and are often rejected by established colonies. It is possible for some of these cats to be socialized, but it depends on their trust of humans. It is very important to take caution, especially with cats who seem to straddle the fence between community and friendly. Getting them to trust people again might be hard, making them extremely difficult to adopt out. (ASPCA)

Some feral cats can be adopted and domesticated, most cannot. Thus, it makes sense the St. Louis Feral Cat Outreach doesn’t want Rally Cat to be forced to live in the Cardinal’s clubhouse.

In the recent non-scientiofic Sunday Poll just over half agreed, with more than 10% in the middle.

Q: Agree or disagree: The St. Louis Cardinals should get custody of “rally cat.”

  • Strongly agree 6 [15.38%]
  • Agree 5 [12.82%]
  • Somewhat agree 2 [5.13%]
  • Neither agree or disagree 4 [10.26%]
  • Somewhat disagree 3 [7.69%]
  • Disagree 7 [17.95%]
  • Strongly disagree 11 [28.21%]
  • Unsure/No Answer 1 [2.56%]

This has forced me to read up on the varied opinions on Trap-Neuter-Return (TNR).

— Steve Patterson

Crosswalks Meet At One Curb Ramp, Rather Than Two

August 28, 2017 Accessibility, Featured, Planning & Design, Walkability Comments Off on Crosswalks Meet At One Curb Ramp, Rather Than Two

Recent work downtown has been mostly good for pedestrians, but Saturday night my husband and I found an awful corner: the NE corner of Market & Broadway.  This is the SW corner of the Old Courthouse. I;m not sure who gets the blame, the possible culprits are city streets dept, city board of public service (BPS), MoDOT, National Park Service, or Gateway Arch Park Foundation.

Most new work has gotten away from placing one curb ramp at the apex at the corner, instead doing a ramp/crosswalk to cross each street. This improves ADA-compliance and reduces inconveniences for all pedestrians.

We had to cross the ramp on the NE corner of Market & Broadway as we crossed Broadway. Both times the ramp was full of pedestrians waiting to cross Market. Both times I had to ask others to move.

Heading back to Kiener Plaza I snapped this photo of the crowd at the corner, two guys on the left are avoiding the crowd at the corner by walking in the street — not an option for those of us who use mobility devices.
In this crowed view you can see hoe the one crosswalk is angled to meet the sole curb ramp.

The idea is to get Arch visitors to start in Kiener Plaza, so this corner should see many pedestrians. It amazes me each crosswalk doesn’t lead to its own curb ramp.

No, I’m not amazed. I’ve experienced first hand how even brand new work ism’t designed by people who think like pedestrians.

— Steve Patterson

Sunday Poll: Should The Cardinals Get To Adopt ‘Rally Cat’?

August 27, 2017 Featured, Sunday Poll Comments Off on Sunday Poll: Should The Cardinals Get To Adopt ‘Rally Cat’?
Please vote below

On August 9th a small kitten ran across the outfield during a Cardinals baseball game, followed by a grand slam. The internet quickly dubbed it Rally Cat. Just as quickly Rally Cat disappeared, but then Rally Cat was found in Citygarden.

Then the controversy started.

The Cardinals publicized a plan to adopt the good-luck cat. He would live in the Cardinals Clubhouse and be pampered by the team, officials with the team said.

But alas, it won’t be so.

Public conflict between the birds and the cat lovers who captured Rally Cat have led to irreconcilable differences.

The cat nonprofit claims the Cardinals organization has the wrong priorities. (Post-Dispatch)

And here we have the subject for today’s poll:

This poll will close at 8pm tonight.

— Steve Patterson

Wheelchair Users Locked Out Of St. Louis Public Park

August 25, 2017 Accessibility, Featured, Parks Comments Off on Wheelchair Users Locked Out Of St. Louis Public Park

Since moving downtown nearly a decade ago I’ve spent a lot of time in Lucas Park, just two blocks to the East. Unfortunately, the city has me locked out of the park. Lucas Park has four entrances — two along the South edge off Locust St, and two along the North edge off St. Charles Sr. The city’s parks department keeps the two South gates locked and opens the North gates during the day. The problem is the two North gates both have steps.

When I first began visiting Lucas Park only one ramp existed — the South entrance nearest to 14th. When the dog park was added a 2nd ramp was installed near the North entrance nearest to 13th. That pedestrian gate gas unlocked by the nearby gate at the ramp does not. It’s impossible for me, while using my power wheelchair, to use Lucas Park.

The SW gate is locked on Wednesday August 23rd @ 8:32am.
The NE gate for the ramp was also locked
An hour later, on the way home from the grocery store, the park still looks inviting.

Wednesday I emailed the first two photos to a couple of city officials and posted them to social media. Yesterday was also a very nice day, I tried to visit the park again on my way to the grocery store.

A couple of people were working out in the park at 1:50pm
Again, the SW gate to the original ramp was locked
The NW gate was unlocked
It has steps down
The NE gate to the newer ramp was locked
The NE gate with steps was wide open
I can see into the park, I just can’t get inside
The SE gate was locked.

As I understand it, city parks dept employees come out to unlock the NE & NW gates, but don’t unlock the NE gate for the ramp. I don’t think this is deliberate, just another example of people not thinking.

— Steve Patterson



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