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Loughbrough Commons – No Accessible Entrance After Six Months

Next week marks the six month anniversary of the opening of the Schnuck’s grocery store at the auto-centric Loughborough Commons big box/strip center (see post from opening day). To date, developer DESCO has failed to provide an ADA-compliant accessible entrance from the public street to either of the open businesses. The Americans with Disabilities Act, you may recall, is not building code but is in fact federal civil rights legislation.

Part of the public sidewalk along Loughborough was removed and has remained open and muddy alll winter — forcing pedestrians along Loughborough into the street. Heading into the center is a minimal sidewalk which does not appear to comply with the maximum slope requirements for an accessible route. Now that I have my new digital level, I will be able to verify the slope of the sidewalk and how compliant or not it may be.
Ald. Matt Villa took exception with my comments at the time that Loughborough Commons didn’t welcome pedestrians, stating that it was not finished yet. Well Matt, do you have a timeline from DESCO on when we will see an ADA-compliant accessible route from the public street and from building to building? A year? Two years? Five years?


Currently there are "11 comments" on this Article:

  1. Again, due to our “battered wife syndrome” we have low standards and take what we can get regardless if it’s illegal.

  2. Brent says:

    I’m with you on this one Steve. I have a trip to Lowe’s planned this morning. It’s a beautiful day and what I’m buying can be brought back on my bike. I will be driving however, because riding my bike over there scares me and there’s not anywhere handy to lock up.

  3. Patience Grasshopper. All DESCO and the aldermen have to do is wait a bit for this un-sustainable location to fall in vacancy and disrepair and then they won’t have to worry about any pedestrian/shopper access! Brilliant!

  4. stlmama says:

    Doug, the use of the term “battered wife syndrome” in this case is extremely offensive.

    Aside from that, I say the less accessible the better. I won’t shop there at all in protest
    of their use of eminent domain to build, and wish no one else would either. I know, there’s
    always someone who has a reason they can’t get somewhere else, but it’s the only way
    we can make a point about eminent domain abuse.

  5. toby says:

    Hell, it’s a nightmare to access that place in a CAR!

    And I’m with “stlmama” in that I just avoid the place entirely as a form of public and private protest. After 2 disastorous outtings there (both inside and out), I refuse to even go near the intersection, much less the shopping center.

    But this fallout has made me re-discover the independent grocery store st Grand and Iron. It fits all my criteria: small, so it’s navigatable; under the radar so it’s never crowded; within walking and biking distance; do not risk life & limb to walk or bike to it; purchases made there do not enrich DESCO in any way.

  6. I am sorry if the term is offensive, but I believe it describes our political culture. Reality is often not so pleasant.

  7. “Battered wife syndrome”?

    Lack of imagination
    Insistence on following outmoded social and political conventions

    All of which combine to create a city where great things fail to happen not because they can’t, but because people won’t let themselves do great things.

    We are our own worst enemies. Commonly-cited “bad guys” like Richard Callow are handy excuses for inaction

    If such people did not exist, many St. Louisans would have to invent them.

  8. Joe Frank says:

    So far I’m liking the selection and the interior setup of the new Schnucks Loughborough store.

    But I agree the ped/bike access is horrible. Trying to get from the #08 bus stop on EB Loughborough just west of the entrance to the store is very dangerous on foot. That missing sidewalk wouldn’t be so bad, except that stretch of Loughborough is busier than ever since that center has opened.

    They really have included a TDD in this project that would have funded widening Loughborough from the store entrance to I-55, including a new, wider bridge over the UP railroad tracks.

    By the way, what’s a “six month anniversary”? The Latin annum means year.

    Yes, I’m a pedantic dork. 😉

  9. stlmama says:


    Use of the term “Battered Wife Syndrome” isn’t offensive because of the point you’re tyring to make, I get that. What is offensive is this term in general. It blames a woman who is battered for somehow being defective when the real problem is the guy who thinks he has the right to beat her. And yes, I know it’s been used in the law as a defense for women, but as a woman I don’t appreciate being told that defending my life may mean I’m accused of being crazy. And I know this is way off point, sorry.

  10. Jim Zavist says:

    Driving what’s there now out of business seems like a pretty stupid strategy. Yes, it’s mediocre, suburban, big-box architecture, but the alternative is a lot worse (and won’t bring back that “much-beloved” vacant industrial site)! This is a site that attracts residents from the county to spend money in the city and it gives city residents a place in the city to spend their dollars, both of which help fund city services through city sales taxes. And yes, its “success” will only serve as an incentive for other new developments to be proposed in the city. But, without success at a “basic” level (like this), who’s going to risk doing more-expensive “urban” projects?! In many parts of the city, including in this area, we’re fighting an uphill battle to both retain existing businesses and to attract new ones, and to act out of spite to drive away business simply because it doesn’t meet our aesthetic thresholds is elitism at its worst. Yes, we need to prod our aldermen and our city bureaucrats to get as much quality design as we can out of every project, but once its built, we need to work to see business succeed. Vacant storefronts and a pattern of business failures will only guarantee that the suburbs will continue to see the growth in business that should be occuring here. We also need to patronize those local businesses who have been in our neighborhoods for years or have opened, hermit-crab-like, in vacant storefronts all around town. Like the cliche says, a rising tide raises all boats – more than anything, we need a pattern of success, not a cloud of repeated failure!

  11. Adam says:


    I don’t see how the success of this project will do anything other than tell Desco they can build whatever they
    want and people will continue to shop there because it’s better than nothing. and so far the sales taxes are probably
    being used to correct “oversights” that should have been there from the beginning, such as public sidewalks and ADA


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