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Brick by Brick: 2857 Cherokee Street

At the West end of the Cherokee Station Business District lies a three story brick storefront property. Ruined by years of neglect, this rotting structure stands in defiance of being utterly forgotten by its owners.

2857 Cherokee

2857 Cherokee

The city finally issued a condemnation notice last week. The door had been kicked in by vagrants, unmasking the internal ruin. This debris-filled stairwell degrades right inside of the front doorway. Plainly visible to any passerby; and enticing to anyone needing a free place to stay the night.

Saint Louis doesn’t need to be losing any more buildings, that goes especially for 107 year old brick storefronts. South City has done a remarkable job of avoiding the wholesale tear-downs that ravaged North City. South City has thoroughly rejected bulldozers and the McKee’s that circle over them. Thanks to dedicated landlords, an undaunted Alderman, energetic entrepreneurs and activists, and a sprinkling of idealistic artists Cherokee Street has managed to save, restore, and invigorate its numerous historic buildings.

2857 is the only building within the mixed-use/commercial district in the shape it’s in.

20th Ward Alderman Craig Schmid, once contacted about the property’s condemnation, committed to finding what resources the city has in getting the property into the hands of a responsible developer.

The situation is ripe for a community-driven rehab project. As a resident and proprietor on Cherokee Street, I have a vested interest in seeing this building reconstructed. Other stakeholders, business owners and residents, have expressed interest in pooling what resources they have to save this building.

To be sure, this is a major job. The structural report states plainly that whole walls will need to be relaid. Internal damage is severe, water has had nearly every window open to its invasion. Plants have managed to grow from the windowsills and a tree has sprung out of the garage.

This post is a call for more involvement. Brick by Brick Saint Louis needs to be preserved. If you are a rehabber, a member of the Cherokee Street community, or simply a fellow Saint Louisan dedicated to the preservation of architectural history I ask that you join this project.

For more information on how to get involved please contact me.   With enough volunteers we can start putting together an organization and a plan to save this building.

Update: Before I’ve even managed to post the first installment, new developments have arisen. On Saturday, June 20th, workmen were spotted making superficial fixes on the building. A real door has been placed in the front; no other changes are visible.

Photos provided by Cranky Yellow’s photographer Amanda Beard; www.amandabeardphotography.com. All rights reserved.

– Angelo Stege


Currently there are "32 comments" on this Article:

  1. st. louis neighbor says:

    While, in my view, this is one of the most inspiring blog posts in some time, I predict….

    This post gets few responses…

    Little money or support is raised from bloggers/commenters…

    Alderman Schmid’s efforts will be ignored by hipsters reading here since he’s not considered cool by many in the urbanist community…

    Prove me wrong everybody.

  2. stl neighbor says:

    ^^^ Bitter much?

    What have you done? How much have you given?

    I bet you’re like a lot of STL neighbors, just trying to keep your head above water and keep your own piece of the city as nice as you can…maybe you could can the holier than thou attitude?

  3. a.torch says:

    Excellent post Angelo; ignore the nay-sayers. I have seen buildings in worse condition saved and rehabbed.

  4. Alissa says:

    Thanks for publicizing this, Angelo! I’m excited about the truly community-driven redevelopment that is being championed in our neighborhood, especially after the fiasco that was the ComeUnity Hub.

    We should also note that, per the city assessor’s website (such a lovely resource available to us as residents), property owner Eli Holt owes $2,855.56 in back taxes on this property. Mr. Holt, it is really disappointing to see your blatant disregard for this particular neighborhood, especially when your residence in the Shaw neighborhood has no property taxes due.

  5. CHRIS says:

    Does the Cherokee Business Station District have a good marketing program? Or Gravois Park and Benton Park West for that matter?

    The old architecture is only half the story. The area needs people who want to live and/or have businesses their. People who will contribute positively to the area and have a stake in saving the old architecture and contribute to a thriving community.

    Review how Soulard was turned around: http://stlouis.missouri.org/soulard/steps1prologue.html

  6. Jason Stokes says:

    Angelo –

    How do we get in touch with you? Your email isn’t listed on your profile page. You can reach me at jmstokes at bus.illinois.edu – I’d like to get involved.

  7. St. Louis Neighbor says:

    No, I’m not bitter, just experienced. From the original post, I thought maybe Angelo had an angle to own or develop the property. However, from Alissa’s comment its clear that thers’s an absentee owner/slumlord involved.

    When Schmid says he’s going to explore resources to get the property from the owner, let’s face it, unless the slumlord is willing to sell, then the city will need to take it by force. Would the anti-eminent domain forces rally to protect this slumlord?

    Will urbanists, Cherokee stakeholders push the city to use eminent domain? Would a judge award a ridiculous price in the sale?

    Given the condition, this building doesn’t look like it’s worth much. It will take a gut rehab to the tune of $X00,000s of dollars. In this economy, that’s a tough order.

    We need a strategy to deal with vacant properties. It shouldn’t be such a cajoling and plead approach. Neighbors and the good people ought to have a clear understanding of the resources available to deal with situations like this.

    The long term wait and see alternative will lead to another demolition and vacant lot.

  8. Angelo says:

    Chris, it’s funny you should say that….I am actually organizing a community-wide advertising campaign as we speak. I’ve already got over 15 businesses signed on…and way more are interested.

    The Cherokee Station Business Association has alot of resources, and has helped alot with street promotion. The extremely successful Cinco De Mayo is one example of that.

    As for contacting me, the “contact” section of the Cranky Yellow website has a couple of ways to get ahold of me.

    As I indicated above, the strategy is to find someone who’s already in the rehabbing biz and combine their resources with those in the immediate community. The price tag certainly goes down when you can utilize labor from activists in the community as well as donations from stakeholder individuals and organizations.

  9. Sandy G says:

    Geo STL lists the owner as living on Flad. What’s his story?

  10. St. Louis Neighbor says:

    The first task is to gain site control over the building. Absent that, it would be to stabilize/secure the building from further deterioration. Volunteers can’t do much without legal permission to do so.

    The city’s code enforcement mechanism has lots of tools to work with, and too many cases to deal with. Continuances of enforcement actions are often granted.

    What has the history of contact with the owner been? If he/she is totally incommunicative, then it’s time to raise the pressure in terms of legal action.

    What about having the Cherokee business association target the property in a nuisance/damage to property value lawsuit? By now, there should be a long history of formal complaints against the building/owner for lack of maintenance.

    With enough pressure, the owner might cave and donate the property rather than pay a stiff fine/judgement.

    As Chris said, an engaged citizenry is much more important than anything else.

  11. Angelo says:

    St. Louis Neighbor, could you please contact me directly? You’ve got some interesting ideas that I would like to explore.

  12. TimG says:

    I agree with “a.torch.” I wouldn’t know about 1/10th of these issues hadn’t been for your website. In order for this city to turn around, we have to venture out of our “own piece of the city” and try to help out around us.

    Although I don’t think it’s entirely on the city to rehab all these abandoned places, they should make it easy and enticing to invest in old property.

  13. Jimmy Z says:

    Good luck! If it truly “is the only building within the mixed-use/commercial district in the shape it’s in”, the odds will be much better of justifying the investment needed to renovate it. Our bigger challenge, as a city, is that this is by no means an isolated situation.

  14. GMichaud says:

    I looked at that building around 2005 or so. The windows were mostly intact then, the interior was rough, although not as bad as the photos. The brickwork was good at the time, although the front is a replacement and not historic. It is a good building, the city should insure that it stays, especially with the ongoing revival of Cherokee.
    According to Geo St. Louis it has 39 CSB complaints, 18 since 2005. There is also 27 building violations recorded in February of this year. Probably leading to the current condemnation.

  15. St. Louis Neighbor says:

    With so many code violations and apparent lack of progress, the owner of this building should be in front of a judge, with testimony being given by the NSO, the alderman, and local community representatives.

    Testimony would reflect the negligent ownership of the property and the detriment the building is bringing on the community.

    The owner would plea a hardship case. He would say he’s been doing X and doing Y, and that he plans a total rehab of the building.

    The judge should weigh the evidence, and offer the owner the option of bringing back plans and financing within 60 days or be obligated to sell the property for a price reflecting the average of three appraisals: one obtained by the owner, one by the city, and one by the community organization. The judge would reserve the right to review and reject any and all appraisals.

    In the meantime, the community should be working to establish a redevelopment plan for the building. Prospective developers and funds for site acquisition should be identified.

    A fly in the ointment would be the existence of a bank loan, holding senior lien rights. It would be good if the judge could order a foreclosure sale of the property, even if the bank did not want to foreclose. Most loans have default provisions for lack of building maintenance.

    However, it would not surprise me if the owner of this building owes more on it than its worth. Such a situation should not be hold a neighborhood hostage, waiting for a sucker buyer to over pay for a derelict building.

    Such boneheaded transactions were what created much of our national mortgage mess in the first place.

    Thanks for your efforts, Angelo. Keep us posted of the community’s progress.

  16. GMichaud says:

    According to Geo St. Louis he bought the building for $25,000, I know they were asking around $35,000 when I looked at it in 2005. There are ways to research loans on the property, but I have only done that in the county. I’m not sure how it is done in the city. (It is what a title company does). The best bet would probably talk to the owner and find out his intentions.

    At this juncture in time, no additional buildings on Cherokee should come down, especially a corner building. Truthfully it should be made more difficult to demolish buildings in general. This one is certainly not in bad shape, although with all of the plaster on the ground in the stairway, I would have to guess there are some good roof leaks.

    The English have a saying “a building should have a good hat and good boots.” (A good roof and a good foundation are the key to a well preserved building). The windows should be sealed also of course.

    The city should require such a stabilization at a minimum. I have seen first hand the legal apparatus of the the city force either improvements or sale of property in at least a couple of instances. One was in Lafayette Square, an area with substantial clout in government. But it can be done anywhere, especially if the alderman is supportive.

  17. GMichaud says:

    This brings up an even more insidious subject, speculation on buildings. I know I have seen reasonably priced buildings go up for sale a few months later for twice the price. This building could be a version of the speculative building, rather than a project that does not have funding.

    There is a great need for laws that slow down or stop flipping and speculation all together. A building that is bought at $25,000 and sold a short time later for $75,000 (with no work) is money that is pocketed. Instead it should go into the rehab of the building. That $50,000 is usually the difference between a financially feasible project and one that is difficult or impossible to do.

    It is not the only problem causing neighborhood deterioration, but it is a major one that is ignored by major media and government. Their corporate friends in the real estate industry don’t want restrictions or to talk about it.

    It is not capitalism, it is the same short term greed exhibited by Wall Street. It contributes to the decline of our living environment. There is little concern for the neighborhood, other than to take them for as much money as possible.

    Just as Wall Street needs to be regulated, so too, speculation and flipping of properties should be controlled. That may or may not be the problem with this building, but it is generally a universal problem in South City and in real estate in general.

  18. Jimmy Z says:

    GM – while I appreciate the intent of your thoughts, I don’t see a very viable enforcement mechanism. Every time real estate changes hands (except when the government gets involved thru eminent domain and condemnation), there’s a willing seller and a willing buyer. In your example, whoever sold at $25K and whoever bought at $75K could both be labeled as a novice, uneducated, uninformed and/or greedy. But, at the time the transaction occured, I’m pretty sure that they thought they were part of a good, or at least an acceptable, “deal”. It’s ONLY with the clarity of 20/20 hindsight that greed can be defined. Projects don’t move forward for a variety of reasons, not just speculation gone bad. Anything from financing problems, code problems, design problems to personal issue like health and/or divorce can derail a project. Until we figure out a way to make bad luck and decision making illegal, I really don’t see a way to legislate guaranteed positive progress!

  19. GMichaud says:

    Viable enforcement mechanisms exist if there is the will to install them. first of all it would be better if the party did not buy the property for speculation purposes in the first place.
    Taxing mechanisms tied with actual work accomplished measured over time is one way. Somehow the city manages to do something similar with LRA buildings, to prevent speculation on formerly owned city property.

    Sure projects don’t go forward for a variety of reasons. However we are past the point where the welfare of the society should be held hostage by financial interests whose goal is not redevelopment or quality of life, but self centered greed.

    Even the case of Paul McKee, who says he wants development has taken the north side hostage. He is doing so with the cooperation of the government through tax credits and other means.

    It seems the whole real estate and regulatory system needs to be managed in a more sensible manner. A few people can’t be allowed to run roughshod over the urban environment simply so they can stuff their pockets full of cash.

    There is the Paul McKee approach, who knows what you’ll get, not even the city or the citizens know. Although the 4 job centers mentioned is suburban rather than urban terminology. The term job center defines a non walkable environment, probably car driven yet again. But again, who knows?

    And what is happening on Cherokee? Should this individual bought it if he could not keep it weather tight and maintained at a minimum? When it was purchased it looked as if the real estate market was going to go up and up and up and up.

    Maybe it would have just sat there vacant, but that is all its doing now.

    Finding a way to curtail speculation and runaway prices is essential. Does it apply it to this situation, I don’t know. I do know that you can definitely say this building is harming Cherokee Street in its present state. Multiply that by 300 or so and you have Paul McKee.

  20. Jimmy Z says:

    I see a big difference between speculation and maintenance. We, owners of real estate, are, to some degree or another, all speculators – we want to make money on our investments, or, at least, not lose money. Sure, we get to live in it and enjoy it, but nearly all of us want to either sell at a profit or to leave something valuable to our heirs. If we didn’t have that motivation, renting is a much simpler, and probably cheaper, option.

    The problem with this property isn’t that it’s owned by a speculator or an absentee landlord, the problem is that it’s owned by someone who obviously has no intention of taking care of the property! The city has multiple ordinances already in place that address these issues. The basic problem is that the enforcement mechanism isn’t working! We may not have enough inspectors. The judicial process may take too long. The penalties assessed by the court apparently aren’t effective. And there apparently is no good way to get out of this cycle.

    The problem here isn’t that the owner is trying to make a profit. The problem is that profit apparently isn’t possible, so the owner has simply given up and tried to walk away. Limiting speculation, for some type of socialistic goal, would also eliminate the profit motive, aka “greed”, that motivates people to invest in real estate, in both large and small projects. If you want to see a lot more of this, just take away the profit motive. If not, focus on the appropriate maintenance! Plus we already have capital gains taxes that favor long-term holds over short-term flips and property taxes that go up as property values increase. I guess I really don’t get why profit is such an evil in some people’s minds . . .

  21. GMichaud says:

    Profit isn’t evil, how it is obtained is the question. While I don’t want to get into a long discussion about capitalism and where it succeeds or fails, suffice to say nothing is being produced, there is not a better product here, only greed. What exactly are these speculators producing to warrant excess profits? If they move in and live there that might be one thing, and your reference to home ownership has nothing to do with this discussion.

    Take this building at 2857 Cherokee, if there are say an additional 100 vacant buildings in the immediate area held by people who are speculating on them and have no intention of doing anything with them then it harms the community in a severe way, it is not in the best interest of the city nor residents in the area. It is unhealthy and counterproductive. Right now I see people are buying up cheap vacant buildings in the area, and they are not all are home owners or rehabbers.
    And please cut the socialism crap, economist Joseph Stiglitz recently wrote that the major capitalists have ruined capitalism. The truth is we have found that in many instances free markets are often damaging, unreliable and not the answer to all problems.
    So yes the basic enforcement process is not working, so it is time to add more tools. Like I said above, the city managed to regulate speculation with city owned property and they should do the same for privately owned property, it should be easy enough to write a law that protects homeowners and rehabbers while discouraging holding onto vacant buildings that damage neighborhood integrity. And in fact targeting vacant buildings (as the city is doing with its registry) and not vacant land or occupied buildings begins to address the problem of buildings such as 2857 Cherokee in a focused manner.

  22. Jimmy Z says:

    Define excessive. Before moving here, I bought my last home for $88K in 1987 and sold it for close to $300K in 2004. That’s close to 150% profit over 17 years, but it’s what comparable properties were selling for when I bought and when I sold. Is 150% excessive? If it only takes 10 years? 5 years? I think you’re confusing inflation and profit. It’s only profit if you can walk away with a net gain. It’s inflation if you have to spend your whole paper profit to make a lateral move.

    I understand the frustration that comes from having to save up a downpayment, especially if property values are growing faster than wages. Affordability can be a real problem, especially in desirable areas. And gentrification can be a real mixed bag in any community that’s experiencing it.

    I kind of get your argument that nothing is being produced, especially with this property. Would your greed argument go away/be reduced if the property were improved? Or would it still be greed if the renovator made any profit? Would 5% be too much? 10%? 20%? 50%? Bigger picture, should a landlord be able to collect rent off of the property? All he/she is doing is letting someone occupy the space; the landlord isn’t producing anything tangible.

    I also get your frustration with the 100 times argument. Is the situation any worse on the north side because one entity owns 100 properties? Would it be better if ten investors/speculators owned ten properties each (and neglected them)? If 50 owned two each? Ownership does NOT equate to pride of ownership – we have way too many examples of that across the city, and it’s not just the opwners of multiple properties.

    “Right now I see people are buying up cheap vacant buildings in the area, and they are not all are home owners or rehabbers.” Yeah, so? Who’s preventing the “home owners or rehabbers” from buying? Is it the banks, who won’t lend? The potential buyers, who won’t pay as much as the speculators? The city? Or is it simply a case of increased supply, citywide and regionwide, where potential buyers can buy relatively more, with less work being required, elsewhere? And the sellers here being left with the option of selling to an investor/speculator or being stuck with a property they don’t want?!

    Finally, we obviously have very different opinions about what amounts to capitalism and what constitues socialism. I have no problem with someone who works harder than someone else being rewarded for those efforts, through higher pay, which will buy the bigger house and the nicer car. Sure, sometimes luck plays a role, but most of the time it’s a direct result of making the right choices and working hard . . .

  23. GMichaud says:

    Speculating on a building is not working harder, that is exactly the point. In addition your excessive example has nothing to do with speculating, You are describing home ownership. Apparently you did not read my previous post when I said home ownership has nothing to do with the discussion.

    It is one thing to speculate on stocks which are imaginary and conceptual in their nature vs speculating on buildings that are part of the everyday lives of people. The best architects understand the difference.

    You are apparently not very familiar with the real estate market. Homeowners and especially small scale developers and rehabbers are not in the same league when buying cheap homes, and if you need an explanation then you truly do not understand how things work.

    In the end if you want to use capitalism to justify screwing over neighborhoods and communities then that is up to you.

    We have tried the same reckless and ignorant approach for quite some time with no results, St. Louis is barely maintaining. It is time for many changes.

    And if you want to talk about socialism, why not start with the large and mega corporations, who are all but handed state welfare day after day.

    Preventing speculation and the deterioration of communities is hardly socialism. And it certainly has nothing to do with working harder, it is not like these investors come into the communities and improve things with their bare hands. What? do you mean working harder is throwing money around?

  24. liljazz says:

    I would love to help on this program. I am with a group of people who have been trying to find a building to buy a house to rehab for co-op living for musicians and artists. We all have rehabbing skills and would like to also green roof, rainwater collection, greywater systems, and solar panels. Our goal is to restore these forgotten houses into efficient living spaces for low-income and below poverty people who can’t afford to buy a house. With the co-op plan we offer a rental equity program to help them save money to purchase another forgotten to be rehabbed during stay at co-op. Rebuild blocks of communities one building at a time. We are all also in poverty ourselves, but together with all our resources we can get things done 🙂

  25. Angelo Stege says:

    Ummm, liljazz, could you please contact me? “info[at]crankyyellow.com”, phone number on the website on my profile page. If your group is capable and has enough resources I would be happy to work with you on acquiring and rehabbing the building.

  26. Jimmy Z says:

    OK – no more talk of home speculation, let’s just talk commercial real estate. (I’ve just been using residential since it’s easier for more people to grasp.) Most businesses, especially new ones, do not own the buildings they’re in, they lease space from a landlord. And, by your definition, any landlord is a speculator, since they make their money passively – the landlord offers space at a rate affordable to the business, and the business’ resources are not tied up in real estate, leaving more money to invest in the business itself. What are you proposing? Eliminating landlords?!

    You assert that I’m “not very familiar with the real estate market”; I disagree. I don’t disagree that most small investors don’t have the same financial resources as many large investors – few small investors can pull out their checkbook and write a check for a distressed property, but that’s just the reality of being small, just like most people can’t walk into a car dealer and write a check for a new vehicle. You either save until you have enough, you buy smaller/cheaper, or you borrow, leveraging your limited resources to obtain more, more quickly. What are you proposing? That no one can pay cash for a property? That everything must be financed?! It doesn’t matter if this or any other property was acquired in a cash transaction, a trade or if it were financed – it matters that it’s falling apart!

    You close with several points: “In the end if you want to use capitalism to justify screwing over neighborhoods and communities. [No!] . . . We have tried the same reckless and ignorant approach for quite some time with no results, St. Louis is barely maintaining. It is time for many changes. [Yes!] . . . Preventing speculation and the deterioration of communities is hardly socialism.” Preventing speculation certainly WOULD be socialistic, while minimizing deterioration would not.

    I see three significant points where we differ. One, I put speculation and investment in the same box. Few people are willing to invest (“speculate”) in any property unless they can expect some sort of return on their investment, (“profit”). If there’s no profit available, then their money WILL flow to intangible investments, like the stock market. And, as this and too many other properties in the city illustrate, no investment equals deterioration. Two, I don’t see capitalism as being the evil that you see it. It doesn’t matter if it’s Big Brothers renovating the old Woolworth’s on Grand, the Roberts brothers doing their thing or Joe Blow renovating a shell of a structure in Benton Park – they’re all investing in the city, and they’re all doing it primarily for their own capitalistic goals! And three, keeping an old building is not necessarily always best use for a piece of land. Sometimes, a new structure is a much better and cost-effective answer. Where we do agree, however, is that the situation here, essentially demolition through neglect, is NOT good for either the community or the neighbors. And it’s not that we don’t have multiple laws that already make this illegal, it’s that their application obviously isn’t very effective, as in “We have tried the same reckless and ignorant approach for quite some time with no results, St. Louis is barely maintaining.”

    You closed with “And it certainly has nothing to do with working harder, it is not like these investors come into the communities and improve things with their bare hands. What? do you mean working harder is throwing money around?” There are many ways of working both harder and smarter. Sweat equity is not always the highest and best form of investment. Is it better if someone spends two months getting their walls drywalled (by doing it themselves)? Or is it better if you hire a drywall crew that’ll get it done in two weeks? Allowing the business to occupy the space a month earlier? Generating revenues a month earlier? The problem here isn’t who’s doing the sweating, the problem is who ISN’T!

    Bottom line, I think we have similar goals, to get our struggling business enclaves reoccupied, so that the surronding residential neighborhoods can improve, as well. Whether it’s the hispanic community making inroads on Cherokee or the gay community making inroads on Manchester, we need to support efforts to think outside the box, since the traditional businesses, and especially most chains, seem to have little or no interest in these structures. And I’m pretty sure that we’re going to have to agree to disagree on whether “capitalism”, even on a small, local scale, is the best answer . . .

  27. GMichaud says:

    JZ I did not say capitalism is evil. You are right, we need to agree to disagree.
    The bottom line is that capitalism has failed on many fronts. What has a higher value? The right of 100’s or 1000’s of citizens to live in decent neighborhoods, or the right of a few individuals to purchase buildings and sit on them for years on end so they can profit handsomely off of the community building efforts of everyone else?

    Commercial property is different than residential to be sure, just as there is a great difference in residential property located in South St. Louis vs Ladue.
    Storefronts such as this one on Cherokee are more akin to residential properties than larger commercial projects.

    If money flows into other intangible investments, so what? good riddance. That gives the opportunity for more thoughtful individuals and groups such as liljazz in the post just above to purchase a building. From the description Liljazz is going to be involved in building the community also. By nature, these individuals move slower and are learning about real estate, but what is important they want to become part of the community.
    It does not matter if someone buys a building if it is only going to sit vacant for years.
    I am actively watching speculators gobble up buildings right now all over south st. louis, it cuts out a natural renaissance that occurred in early Soulard and Lafayette Square when, for whatever reason, speculators were not the order of the day.
    If we are not smart enough to identify the shortcomings of capitalism it will be our downfall. Unbridled capitalism has already delivered a major blow to our country. Nor are we out of the woods as a nation from this blow.

    I am no fan of excessive government, in fact I feel like government should be limited. However, free for all capitalism is harming neighborhoods and communities and it needs to be contained. It is that simple. If there is a better way to do it than tax profits or some other similar mechanism, then lets hear it.

    At a minimum every building needs to be watertight, including roofs, the brickwork in good order, and in general preserve the structure.
    Anything else, they can take their money and piss it away on Bernie Madoff and friends like him. St. Louis does not need them to “invest” here.

    Now look at the subject of this post, 2857 Cherokee, if the city was going to tax profits at 50% or more because it is not kept watertight would this guy have bought the building to start with?
    Would it still be available for $25,000? If so, it would probably be purchased, even with it’s warts, by someone who would add to the soulful mix of Mexicans, antiques and young visionaries that now populate the street.

    Speculation has been an ongoing problem for many, many years in the the City of St. Louis. It needs to be dealt with.

  28. Jimmy Z says:

    Here’s a good idea from Louisville, KY – triple the property taxes on vacant properties: http://www.courier-journal.com/article/20090715/NEWS01/907150407/1008/NEWS01/Blighted+buildings+face+higher+taxes

  29. Nitzer says:

    The building is currently for sale with the asking price of $41,000. It is stated that the units within have been demo’ed and has structural paperwork to show any buyers.

    I had been looking a little into this building the past couple weeks. Not sure if I can take on a large project at this time, but who knows. I just hope that some takes the building and does it justice.

  30. Nitzer says:

    Here is the listing that I ran across.

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