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St. Louis Rapid Transit Connector Study: First Round of Open House Meetings Scheduled March 28, April 2, and April 5

The following is a press release:


Bi-State Development Agency (Metro) announced the first round of public open houses focusing on a new St. Louis Rapid Transit Connector Study scheduled for March 28, April 2 and April 5. The study is another step toward fulfilling Metro’s long-term goal of offering efficient, competitive and attractive transit services to more residents and more places in the St. Louis region.

The study, led by the Bi-State Development Agency (Metro) and the Transportation Corridor Improvement Group, will identify two transit investment projects to move forward in pursuit of federal funding. It is anticipated at least one project will be implemented as a result of this effort.

The St. Louis Rapid Transit Connector Study is a direct result of Moving Transit Forward, the long-range transit plan that highlighted the potential of using the region’s existing network of highways and major streets to provide higher-speed, limited-stop transit services. The general transportation corridors identified by the public as significant opportunities for high-performance transit are Interstates 70, 44, 64, and 55, major streets near those highways, and Grand Boulevard in St. Louis.

“By improving the connections between people and jobs, education, and other opportunities, we can maximize the potential not only of our transportation network, but of our residents and businesses as well,” said Jessica Mefford-Miller, Metro Chief of Planning and System Development.

The study takes a data-driven approach to identify and evaluate potential projects. Final recommendations will be shaped by several objectives, including improved access to transportation that supports economic growth; expansion of access to opportunities; enhanced employer access to a broader and more diverse labor pool; reduction of traffic congestion and air pollution; and financial feasibility.

The partners leading the St. Louis Rapid Transit Connector Study will answer questions and encourage discussion at the three upcoming public meetings. The meetings will be conducted in open-house style, with the attendees invited to participate in interactive activities designed to gather community input on project goals and transit performance criteria. Residents will also learn about the range of possible options for expanding cost-effective rapid transit service in St. Louis.

The same information will be presented at each of the public open houses.

· Thursday, March 28 from 4:30-7:30 p.m. A formal presentation will be made at 5:30 p.m. and again at 6:30 p.m. Located at the JC Penney Conference Center at the UMSL Campus. The meeting will be in the 1st Floor Lobby of the building located at 1 University Boulevard, St. Louis, MO 63121.

· Tuesday, April 2 from 4:30-7:30 p.m. A formal presentation will be made at 5:30 p.m. and again at 6:30 p.m. Located at the World Trade Center on the 10th Floor. The building is located at 121 S. Meramec Avenue, Clayton, MO 63105.

· Friday, April 5 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. A formal presentation will be made at noon. Located at St. Louis City Hall on the 2nd Floor Hall and in the Kennedy Room. City Hall is located at 1200 Market Street St. Louis, MO 63103.

More information and futures updates on the St. Louis Rapid Connector Study can be found at www.movingtransitforward.org/stlrapidtransit.

About the Transportation Corridor Improvement Group

The St. Louis Rapid Transit Connector Study is being conducted by the Bi-State Development Agency (Metro) in partnership with the Transportation Corridor Improvement Group, a partnership between East-West Gateway Council of Governments (EWGCOG), St. Louis County, the City of St. Louis, and the Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT).


PR: Mayor appoints Roth Public Safety Director

February 24, 2012 Press Release 6 Comments

The following is a press release:


Eddie Roth

Bryson to serve as senior advisor on neighborhood affairs

St. Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay has appointed Eddie Roth as director of public safety for the City of St. Louis.

Roth, 53, came to city government in August 2011 to join the mayor’s staff as St. Louis’ chief performance officer. He was hired to implement recommendations made by IBM to reduce crime in St. Louis through improved coordination and communication in the City’s criminal justice system. IBM’s recommendations were part of St. Louis’ involvement, last year, in the company’s Smarter Cities Challenge program. St. Louis was the first city chosen, nationally, to participate in the program.

Mayor Slay seeks to accelerate the implementation process through Roth’s appointment as Public Safety Director.

“Eddie Roth’s experience as a Police Board president combined with his recent work to better coordinate the criminal justice system makes him ideally suited to serve as director of public safety during this important period in the City’s history,” said Mayor Slay.

Roth was a member of the Board of Police Commissioners from 1998 through 2001, serving as president in 2000-2001. He is a former editorial writer at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and before that practiced law for nearly 20 years. He is past president of the Shaw Neighborhood Improvement Association.

As public safety director, he will continue work as the city’s chief performance officer.

 “I look forward to working with the various arms of public safety in the City of St. Louis, including the Board of Alderman’s Public Safety Committee,” said Roth.

“As chairperson of the Public Safety Committee, I look forward to collaborating with Eddie Roth to increase safety and quality of life in the City of St. Louis,” said Alderman of the 27th Ward Greg Carter.

Roth succeeds Charles Bryson, who has served as public safety director for five years. Bryson will rejoin the mayor’s staff as a senior policy advisor with a focus on neighborhoods.

“Charles deserves praise and thanks for his service in the Department of Public Safety,” said Mayor Slay. “Charles’ experience in creating more and better neighborhood partnerships will be beneficial to our City.”

 * * *

About the St. Louis Department of Public Safety:

The Department of Public Safety is the largest municipal government department in the City of St. Louis with more than 1,400 employees.  The Divisions of the Department of Public Safety are: 

  • Building Division
  • City Emergency Management Agency
  • Corrections Division, which includes the City Justice Center and Medium Security Institution
  • Excise Division (liquor control office)
  • Fire Department, which includes the Bureau of Emergency Medical Services
  • Neighborhood Stabilization Team, which includes Citizens’ Service Bureau
  • Office of Special Events

The Department of Public Safety is responsible for:

  • Code enforcement in the development of new construction and substantial rehabilitation
  • Preventing use of unsafe buildings (monitoring unsafe buildings to prevent usage)
  • Emergency management planning (and execution)
  • Fire prevention and suppression (fire education and suppression)
  • Emergency medical services
  • Land use zoning
  • Issuing permits for residential and commercial construction, business occupancy, the sale and distribution of alcoholic beverages
  • Management of correctional facilities (and inmates)
  • Neighborhood safety, enrichment programs and citizen services (work order and complaint reporting system)
  • Special events planning.

PR: City to Restrict Area around 11th and Spruce

September 20, 2011 Downtown, History/Preservation, Press Release Comments Off on PR: City to Restrict Area around 11th and Spruce

The following is a press release from the mayor’s office:

Contact: Kara Bowlin


September 20, 2011

Starting Tuesday, access to the area around 11th and Spruce Downtown will be limited because portions of the historic Cupples 7 building have become structurally unsound. The City will restrict access to the building to make sure no one gets hurt.

City engineers have determined that the building is unstable enough that the City will close 11th Street from Spruce to Poplar and half a block of Spruce east of 11th Street on Tuesday after the morning rush.

Cupples 7 was built in 1907. The City routinely inspects it and has repeatedly cited the owner because of its deteriorating condition. Severe damage to the building’s roof has exposed the interior of the building to the elements. But, representatives from Ballpark Lofts III LLC, the building’s owner, say it does not have enough money to make the needed repairs to shore up the building. So far, no one has stepped forward with enough money and a plan to protect the structure.

“Building inspectors regularly inspect the building,” said Building Commissioner Frank Oswald. “It’s our job to protect our City’s residents and visitors from unsafe buildings. Unfortunately, we no longer feel confident in this building’s structural integrity. To the untrained eye, the building seems stable at the street level – but years of a severely damaged roof have taken a toll on its stability.”

Cupples 7 is one of nine Cupples buildings. It is one of only two Cupples buildings that has not yet been renovated – and is the only Cupples building without a renovation plan in place.

Any proposed repair or demolition of this building, a designated City Landmark and in a National Register Historic District, will be subject to review by the Cultural Resources Office.




May 23, 2011 Press Release 13 Comments

The following is a press release:


WASHINGTON – U.S. Housing and Urban Development Secretary Shaun Donovan today awarded $152.7 million to help eight cities across the country transform severely distressed public housing developments into mixed-income communities.

Housing authorities in the following cities developed highly successful revitalization plans to transform the physical condition of a public housing community and make a positive impact on the lives of their residents: Boston, Massachusetts; Denver, Colorado; Louisville, Kentucky; Patterson, New Jersey; St. Louis, Missouri; Taunton, Massachusetts; Phoenix, Arizona; and Portland, Oregon.

“No one can dispute the exceptional track record of HOPE VI to improve housing conditions for hundreds of communities and most importantly, thousands of families,” said Donovan. “As we move toward the next generation of neighborhood revitalization – one that links housing, education, transportation, healthcare, and other support services – we will always remember it all began with HOPE VI.”

The following housing authorities are being awarded grants through HUD’s HOPE VI Revitalization Program:

  • Boston Housing Authority will receive $22 million to revitalize the Old Colony public housing development;
  • Housing Authority of the City and County of Denver will receive $22 million to revitalize the South Lincoln public housing development;
  • Louisville Metropolitan Housing Authority will receive $22 million to revitalize the Sheppard Square public housing development;
  • Housing Authority of the City of Patterson (NJ) will receive $18.4 million to revitalize the Alexander Hamilton public housing development;
  • St. Louis Housing Authority will receive $7,829,750 to revitalize the Arthur Blumeyer public housing development;
  • Taunton Housing Authority will receive $22 million to revitalize the Fairfax Gardens public housing development;
  • City of Phoenix Housing Authority will receive $20 million from FY 2011 funds to revitalize the Frank Luke Addition public housing development; and
  • Housing Forward (Portland Housing Authority) will receive $18.5 million from FY 2011 funds to revitalize the Hillsdale Terrace public housing development.

The eight housing authorities announced today were selected among 36 public housing authorities that applied forFY 2010 HOPE VI Revitalization funding.  Six of the grantees will be funded from FY 2010 HOPE VI appropriations; two awards will come from FY 2011 funding. Later this year, HUD will conduct a competition to award $65 million in FY2011 funding to implement the Department’s new Choice Neighborhoods Program.HUD awarded high marks to applicants who plan to extend neighborhood transformation efforts beyond public housing linking housing interventions with early childhood education programs. The Obama Administration is challenging communities to build upon the HOPE VI lessons to employ a comprehensive approach to community transformation.  Choice Neighborhoods aims to transform neighborhoods of poverty into viable mixed-income neighborhoods with access to economic opportunities by revitalizing severely distressed public and assisted housing and then linking these neighborhoods to well-functioning services, effective schools, public transportation and jobs.

Housing authorities are competitively selected for HOPE VI grants based on many factors including the effectiveness and project readiness of their revitalization plans.  HUD gives recipients the flexibility to develop revitalization plans that meet their local needs.  Among other criteria, grantees are selected based on the capacity of their  housing authority and its development team to administer and manage completion of the revitalization effort; the severity of physical distress of the development; the ability of the housing authority to supplement the HOPE VI grant with funding from other sources, private, state or local government; the ability to provide supportive services to displaced residents; and the proposed green development and energy efficiency strategies.

Since 1993, HUD has awarded 260 HOPE VI Revitalization grants to 133 housing authorities– totaling nearly $ 6.3 billion. HUD began awarding HOPE VI grants following a 1992 report by the National Commission on Severely Distressed Public Housing that found approximately 86,000 public housing units in the U.S. needed revitalization.  HOPE VI Revitalization grants are used for an array of activities, including: demolition of severely distressed public housing; acquisition of sites for off-site construction; capital costs of major rehabilitation; new construction and other physical improvements; costs for mobility counseling and relocation; and community and supportive service programs for residents, including those relocated as a result of revitalization efforts.

Read a summary of the HOPE VI grants awarded today. #



PR: Volunteers Bring Hope to Homeowners on Lee Avenue

April 26, 2011 Press Release 6 Comments

The following text is from a press release:


Alderman Antonio French, Rebuilding Together-St. Louis, The Acts Partnership, and the Boeing Corporation join forces to rebuild one of the northside’s neediest blocks.

(ST. LOUIS) – Last summer, Lee Avenue experienced a string of shootings and drug-related homicides that left residents stunned and shaken. This Saturday, April 30, Alderman Antonio French (Ward 21) hopes to begin to turn that all around.

This Saturday from 7:00AM to 6:00PM, hundreds of volunteers (many from the Boeing Corporation) will rehab eight homes on the 4100-4300 blocks of Lee Avenue (between Newstead and Fair). These eight homeowners will receive complete home makeovers during year two of Alderman French’s innovative block-by-block “Rebuilding” program—a first-of-its-kind partnership between the 21st Ward and the nonprofit Rebuilding Together-St. Louis. This program works by coordinating a large number of volunteers to target homes on one block, on one Saturday, leaving a lasting impact on the whole block.

Saturday on Lee Avenue is the first of three “Rebuilding Days” that will take place in the 21st Ward this year, with the goal of repairing at least 50 homes over the summer and fall of 2011. Each targeted block will also receive needed city services, such as alley and sidewalk repair, demolition of vacant properties, tree-trimming, and street light replacement, as well as assistance in organizing block units. Saturday, volunteers will be doing everything from emergency plumbing and roof repairs to minor tasks like painting and landscaping.

“The residents of Lee Avenue have lived through violence and tragedy during the last twelve months,” Alderman French said. “We are going to do everything we can with the resources we have to rebuild these blocks and show these homeowners that they are not alone. With the help of the volunteers and donated materials that Rebuilding Together and Boeing bring to the table, we can really stretch each dollar we have as far as it can possibly go.”

“Rebuilding Together is grateful for the substantial financial commitment of Alderman French and the 21st Ward,” said Dave Ervin, Executive Director of Rebuilding Together. “We are thrilled to be helping over 50 families repair their homes in the 21st Ward this year thanks to the support of Alderman French, volunteers from Boeing Corporation, and the valuable support from the skilled trades.”

Work is already underway on Lee Avenue, as several long-vacant buildings are being demolished this week in preparation for Saturday’s event. For more info and to volunteer, please contact the 21st Ward TMAP Office at 769-9000.