Forest Park Southeast Endorses Mix of Contemporary, Historic Infill

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Yesterday, the Park Central’s FPSE Development Committee was presented with more than a dozen proposals for residential infill on city-owned vacant lots. As we noted, being able to select from competing developers is a new and welcome challenge for the neighborhood.

Park Central asked that the development proposals be reviewed together so that the neighborhood consider not only what’s on the table, but what’s possible as demand for housing continues to increase. The area known as The Grove has seen substantial investment over the past decade, yet single-family infill has largely been absent from this revitalization.

The committee selected Grove Investments (Anthony Duncan Architect) for six of its seven desired lots. Two sites, 1303 S. Boyle and 4201 Norfolk, will require further review once more detailed site-specific plans are produced. Loni Properties (Ken Burns Architect) was approved for both of its proposed projects. The Building Pros received support for two new homes on Kentucky Avenue, while HDC: Homes Without Limits (Brendel Architects) lost out on its two proposals. However, HDC is nearly finished with a single family home on the 4400 block of Chouteau Avenue, and has the corner lot at Gibson and Newstead under contract from the city’s Land Reutilization Authority (LRA).

The Grove Investments projects will bring more contemporary architecture to The Grove. Its proposed three-story, mixed use buildings at 4351 Gibson and 4201 Norfolk are especially important as they recognize opportunity for increased density on a high profile corner lots.

Elsewhere, UIC has received support for a contemporary mixed use building at 4321-29 Manchester (and contemporary single family infill on Gibson). The $85M Chouteau’s Grove project is set to introduce an eight-story, 300 apartment building, as well as 78K sf of retail.

Projects endorsed by the Park Central Forest Park Southeast Development Committee:

Grove Investments (Anthony Duncan Architect)

4351 Gibson proposal by Grove Investments

4201 Norfolk proposal by Grove Investments

4335 Arco proposal by Grove Investments

4247 Arco proposal by Grove Investments

4230 Chouteau proposal by Grove Investments

Loni Properties (Ken Burns Architect)

4211-19 Chouteau proposal by Loni Development

4235-39 Chouteau  proposal by Loni Development

The Building Pros

4328 Swan proposal by The Building Pros

1124 Kentucky proposal by The Building Pros

1123 Kentucky proposal by The Building Pros

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  • Friend of 9th district

    I am very happy to see something happen on this Norfolk corner lot. Some years ago this corner was rampant with gang and drug activity. Dealers use to hang around the bus stop and provided a open air drive thru street market for north/south traffic on tower grove. This went on for years.
    I can’t believe some of these comments? How could someone be opposed to any sort of progress in their neighborhood? This new building will certainly help elevate the area.
    Bad mouthing the area development corp that works everyday to make the city a better place? This makes me crazy. The development Corp did a darn fine job choosing these projects.

  • Pauly R.

    All of these projects looks way nicer than the travesty that is chouteau and tower grove. The six aventura townhouses from hell. Would it really have killed the developers bottom line to have put brick on the west elevation? Probably the worst example of urban infill I’ve ever seen. Anyone who was associated in allowing that much siding to sit on that corner should be a shamed of themselves. Park Central did a great job bending over for that developer. The same developer that successfully made the Laclede Gas building on Chouteau , look out of place, by surrounding it with a suburban garden style apartment. Such a shame. (Easily one of the coolest historic structures in the area, now almost ruined by its neighbors.) I know this area needed a development like aventura, but it was executed very poorly. That is why I’m glad to see complete brick facades on these new renderings. Siding on front elevations has no business in this area.

  • Not Buying It

    The JT Garden @4351 Gibson

  • Joe G

    Does anybody realize that a legitimate, well maintained neighborhood garden, complete with irrigation sits less than 100′ east down the alley from this “memorial”??? Yes its true. A lovely garden sits upon a vacant 50′ by 135′ LRA lot on the south side of the 4300 block of Chouteau Ave. I’m no math major, but this site seems twice as large and better maintained than the one at 4201 Norfolk. This real garden is a stones throw away, literally.
    I cant even believe someone would be opposed to developing this corner??
    The levy will break, and new construction plus a ton of rehabbers will soon flow in because of this wave of new projects. Please get out of the way, “not buying it”.

    • Not Buying It

      You mean the privately owned, paid membership, fenced in,and locked Chouteau’s Garden LLC? St. Cronan’s Housing Corporation put up the initial funds for this garden. Then a banker/developer/ board member bought the LRA land without final approval from Park Central Development. They are LAND BANKING. Do you really think they are not going to build on this double lot????
      Yes, that is a beautiful “community garden”, but it probably won’t be there for long. The true community garden should stay. The JT Garden @ 4351 Gibson has been there for 11 years, Chouteau’s Garden only 3. Both are legitimate gardens – one is PUBLIC one is PRIVATE.

      • Joe G

        If the JT memorial site was so important how come it was not better legitimized? Eleven years went by and no one locked this up?
        Oh wait…It’s cause no one cares.
        The community garden on Chouteau was made a real LLC in less than 3 years. Of course the chouteau garden will be built on eventually….
        As soon as the major demo of the neighborhood is made up of yuppies. Who will walk or drive their bmw to the brand new premium grocery store three blocks east in the Green Street development.
        LET GO OF THE PAST!
        Everything is changing. It’s impossible for this neighborhood to remain as is was.

        • Black Love

          FPSE should say NO to “Whites only” development policies.
          The white developer/banker/board member who established a “private community garden” on a predominantly black populated block 3 short years ago, is now the slick new owner of not one, but two LRA lots. He paid about a thousand dollars per lot. He did it without final approval from Park Central, the supposed final authority for development in the area. He did it at a time when demand for LRA lots in FPSE are at an all time high! He did it without LRA or Park Central reviewing any alternative development plans for the lots either! Way to go white man, and friend of the alderman.
          What people don’t know is that because this is a racially divided community, he did it after years of boycotting any support for the already established JT garden @4351 Gibson Avenue-on the same block!
          Black residents took the initiative over 11years ago, creating one of the first community gardens in the ward. On a violent corner, JT was killed there, the rubble of another long derelict LRA property was painstakingly removed. The transformation was remarkable considering the extremely bad degree of blight & the absents of support from white leaders. This garden served as a ray of hope, a “Tipping Point” project, before developers Guy Slay(sweetie pie’s) & Amrit Gill (restoration stl) moved in. Random visitors to JT garden were inspired. Samantha Dowd, home on spring break one year interviewed the JT garden fonder for a college paper on urban renewal. Our garden has art sculptures & murals. Normal black citizens, especially the troubled kids, were Placemaking before it was a hot topic, and doing community service without government supervision.
          The policy set by LRA & Park Central for certain FPSE community gardens is factually presented above. Unfortunately it’s a “whites only” policy, the black gardeners are given no consideration at all.

  • Presbyterian

    The committee did a great job. They seem to have selected the best option for each site.

    • Chris Cooper

      Right on. Park Central got this right. Best use of all sites indeed.

  • Imran

    Wait, how are they going to satisfy the parking nazis for the two mixed used buildings.

    • Alex Ihnen

      First, SHHHHHHHH!
      Second, there’s a crap ton of on-street parking currently not being used. Instituting a neighborhood parking permit program will ensure there is room for residents.
      Third, here’s the preliminary floor plan:

      • Not Buying It

        That is a well established community garden built as a memorial to JT,
        a 19 year old young black man who lost his life at that site. It was a grassroots effort that created it and has maintained it over the past ten years.
        This garden embodies all of the key concepts of PLACEMAKING – way before it was a BUZZWORD. Can we please value the JT Community Garden, with all of its flowers, vegetables, and sitting areas, that add beauty and function to the neighborhood. What value does the alternative serve? Another non-descript looking box shaped building that further alienates people below a certain income level………no thanks! We have enough of that as it is. Find some other corner to clog up.
        Research shows that community gardens add value, beauty, and spice to neighborhoods, while strengthening community bonds. This is exactly what the doctor ordered for the City of St Louis. Watch your step PARK CENTRAL DEVELOPMENT , it is crystal clear who you are serving, and it is not the underserved.

        • Adam

          Yeah, God forbid we have a city with buildings that people live in, and which house services that people use, and whose inhabitants pay taxes that are used to provide civil services and build and maintain city infrastructure. I mean, what value could that possibly have? Let’s just fill all of our vacant lots with community gardens because “spice” and “bonds”.

          • Not Buying It

            Not just spice and bonds – data and research:

            Community gardens have been shown to increase property values in the immediate vicinity where they are located. In Milwaukee, properties within 250 feet of gardens experienced an increase of $24.77 with every foot and the average garden was estimated to add approximately $9,000 a year to the city tax revenue (Bremer et al, 2003, p. 20; Chicago, 2003, p. 10; Sherer, 2006).

          • Adam

            Cool. When FPSE is no longer ~30–40% vacancies we can start talking about adding a community garden here and there to increase property values. Until then, community gardens aren’t going increase property values.

          • Not Buying It

            There are plenty of other LRA or private lots for the developer to build on that don’t have an established community garden/ memorial there. This site also has benches for people waiting to take the bus. The JT Garden serves many more people than you care to acknowledge.
            And just to let you know, the President of the Board of Alderman and his staff recognize and support community gardens and the value that they add to the city. As a result, Gateway Greening and their mission is getting bigger every year.
            Just wondering, is the 30-40 % vacancy rate in FPSE due in part to the strategy of the developers to delay rehab so they can further drive down property values and buy more. It is twofold – buy cheap while driving people out. There is a human cost to this strategy: alienation, fractured communities, and racial tension. C’mon haven’t you watched the gentrification shows on PBS?

          • Adam

            How many people does the garden serve, exactly? By the looks of it, not too many. In contrast, how many people would a grocery store serve, do you think? In any case, there are plenty of other vacant lots for community gardens as well. The goal is to have few vacancies and a few gardens, not the other way around. Go ask Reed which he prefers: a populated neighborhood with a few scattered gardens or a mostly-vacant, crumbling neighborhood with gardens everywhere. I wonder what he’ll say… hmmmmm. As for bus benches, they can go on the sidewalk like all the other bus benches in every city everywhere.

            And are you seriously suggesting that the vacancy rate was lower before the developers moved in? Do you remember what Manchester looked like ten years ago? On top of that, rehabs and new construction in the neighborhood has only recently started to pick up, and account for a small fraction of current residents. Sorry, but the developers aren’t responsible for the high number of vacancies. Decades of disinvestment are.

            I know you love to harp on the “human cost” of making neighborhoods whole and livable again, but the suggestion that FPSE is not already a fractured community is laughable. We’ll see what happens.

          • Not Buying It

            You really need to brush up on what’s happening. Chouteau’s Grove at Sarah and Chouteau is ready to break ground – they will have over 80,000 sq ft of retail including a supermarket. Who in their right mind would put a grocery store @ Gibson and Tower Grove?
            The garden is enjoyed by anyone that drives, walks, or rides their bike by it. Over the past ten years, countless people have sat at the stone benches put there by community members. The city didn’t provide any seating areas for that stop.
            And regarding development, Wash U Redevelopment Corp is the biggest derelict/vacant property owner in this neighborhood by far. They own 80 parcels and have purposely let them decline for over a decade. They were not vacant buildings when they acquired them. Just walk around, especially south of Manchester.
            Open your eyes, this is all part of the long term strategic plan. Blight it – cut back on city services, drive property owners out, collect HUD monies, and then get the property for close to nothing. Then create a non- profit redevelopment corporation where you can leverage that CBGD money. How long has Alderman Roddy been in power? 25 years. Nuff said.

          • Adam

            and do you think that grocery store would be breaking ground if not for all the other recent development? i’m not talking about putting a grocery store where the garden is (although it could accommodate a small market). my point is that a grocery store is one of the amenities that a functional neighborhood needs, along with others (pharmacy, laundromat, coffee shop, bakery, etc.) that would fit comfortably on the garden site. it’s a matter of critical mass.

            “The garden is enjoyed by anyone that drives, walks, or rides their bike by it. Over the past ten years, countless people have sat at the stone benches put there by community members.”

            these are subjective statements. at least acknowledge that with an “i think” unless you’ve got some numbers to support them. it’s just too easy to say things like “everybody who has ever seen it has been moved to tears!” and “billions of people enjoy the garden every day!”. in any case, the garden can be resurrected on another site.

            “Open your eyes, this is all part of the long term strategic plan.”

            good, the neighborhood needs that (though i’m taking your description of the process with a grain of salt, of course, until you offer some evidence). hopefully one day it will be filled with people and commerce again.

          • Not Buying It

            You really need to brush up on what’s happening. Chouteau’s Grove at Sarah and Chouteau is ready to break ground – they will have over 80,000 sq ft of retail including a supermarket. Who in their right mind would put a grocery store @ Gibson and Tower Grove?
            The garden is enjoyed by anyone that drives, walks, or rides their bike by it. Over the past ten years, countless people have sat at the stone benches put there by community members. The city didn’t provide any seating areas for that stop.
            And regarding development, Wash U Redevelopment Corp is the biggest derelict/vacant property owner in this neighborhood by far. They own 80 parcels and have purposely let them decline for over a decade. They were not vacant buildings when they acquired them. Just walk around, especially south of Manchester.
            Open your eyes, this is all part of the long term strategic plan. Blight it – cut back on city services, drive property owners out, collect HUD monies, and then get the property for close to nothing. Then create a non- profit redevelopment corporation where you can leverage that CBGD money. How long has Alderman Roddy been in power? 25 years. Nuff said.

          • Adam

            How many people does the garden serve, exactly? By the looks of it, not too many. In contrast, how many people would a grocery store serve, do you think? In any case, there are plenty of other vacant lots for community gardens as well. The goal is to have few vacancies and a few gardens, not the other way around. Go ask Reed which he prefers: a populated neighborhood with a few scattered gardens or a mostly-vacant, crumbling neighborhood with gardens everywhere. I wonder what he’ll say… hmmmmm. As for bus benches, they can go on the sidewalk like all the other bus benches in every city everywhere.

            And are you seriously suggesting that the vacancy rate was lower before the developers moved in? Do you remember what Manchester looked like ten years ago? On top of that, rehabs and new construction in the neighborhood has only recently started to pick up, and account for a small fraction of current residents. Sorry, but the developers aren’t responsible for the high number of vacancies. Decades of disinvestment are.

            I know you love to harp on the “human cost” of making neighborhoods whole and livable again, but the suggestion that FPSE is not already a fractured community is laughable. We’ll see what happens.

          • Adam

            By the way, we can see when you up-vote yourself.

          • Adam

            Oh, and I found the site that you copied and pasted from:

            http://www.gardeningmatters.org/sites/default/files/Multiple%20Benefits_2012.pdf

            Did you by any chance actually look at the neighborhoods that experienced increased property values? How does the population/density compare with FPSE?

        • jhoff1257

          I think the doctor’s prescription for additional property tax revenue trumps the need for a community garden. Adams Park is a short walk away and there are dozens of other vacant lots you could build a community garden on. As far as a memorial to JT, you could have a plaque or other type of marker at the site to keep his memory alive. Try and keep an open mind. Someone wants to come into (presumably) your neighborhood and build something that would add residents, activity, and tax revenue. Those three things are what the doctor ordered for this City.

          • Not Buying It

            Please tell me you are not as naive as you
            sound. The developer will acquire the land for virtually nothing, plus they
            will score a 10 year tax abatement courtesy of Alderman Joe Roddy. AKA Mr
            “Special District Tax”, who prides himself on pushing the cost of
            development onto his constituents. Just what the Doctor ordered? You must be
            confusing the Dr with the BJC Medical Campus renewal campaign.
            PLACEMAKING and
            plaque making are two different things. Placemaking is where communities
            make a derelict public lot their own, it involves years of focused energy and
            participation. Adams Park is not a sensory garden nor is it a bus stop. The JT Garden meets multiple community needs – you don’t trump that. The problem with
            this city is its policy of trampling over the rights and needs of current
            residents while desperately chasing anyone or anything new.

          • Imran

            Even with the 10 yr tax abatement, the building will add a few more people to the neighborhood who will spend money, support local business , generate sales tax and generally add to the sense of security and community. The retail components may further add a valuable service to the neighborhood and generate sales tax as well.
            It is hard to argue against the sentimental value of a memorial garden but in general this development will be a net positive for the City.

        • Realist

          NO OFFENSE!
          The ” people under a certain income level” need to start to sell out in the FPSE. New buildings like this, will help get impoverished property owners a fair price for their run down, distressed looking properties. LETS FACE IT….
          Far too many buildings have been completely neglected for the last several years in this area. If these “people” have not reinvested by now, it’s time for them to sell to people who are willing to renovate. It’s the vast number of run down buildings that is holding back real change from happening here.
          *Please drive down some alleys in this area and look at just how bad it looks.
          I thought this area started it’s renaissance in 2004?
          The impoverished residents need to sell out asap, how have they even lasted this long???

          • Adam

            Low- and middle-income residents can coexist and will coexist in FPSE for the foreseeable future. But I find the suggestion that low-income residents would rather have a couple hundred community gardens than an inhabited neighborhood with amenities and services to be presumptuous and silly.

          • Not Buying It

            No offense taken. But it would help the conversation if you had accurate information.
            Who are the largest property owners of “run down, distressed looking properties” that have been neglected for many years in the area? Why its Wash U Medical Redevelopment, Restoration Saint Louis – Amrit Gill, and the City of Louis. Wash U owns 80 derelict properties, the Gills in the 30’s range, and I don’t have the count for the city. So that is well over 100 neglected properties that are “holding back real change”, according to you and your “theories”. In reality, the above mentioned property owners are driving property values down more so than anyone or anything in the neighborhood. They should be the one’s selling, they are doing the most damage!
            So let’s face this – if you drive down the alleys and see some things you don’t like….. move to the county!There are no alleys there. What they do have in the county is tons of “development” (think Aventura) – no community gardens, no flavor, and definitely no spice.

          • Adam

            80 + 30-something is not “well over a hundred”. it’s 119 at most. and 119 is a tiny fraction of the number of vacant properties in FPSE. good try.

            “In reality, the above mentioned property owners are driving property values down more so than anyone or anything in the neighborhood.”

            wow, for somebody who complains about people not having accurate information as much as you do, one would think you’d have some actual numbers to support statements like this. you know, like property values correlated to developer owned properties or something like that.

            and yeah, totally, if you don’t like alleys full of crumbling buildings move to the county! but if you want thousands of vacant lots and gardens everywhere, then the city is the place for you!

          • Alex Ihnen

            119 vacant properties aren’t a tiny fraction of the vacant lots in FPSE. The neighborhood isn’t that large. There’s more than one way to look at the impact of WUMCRC in FPSE, but ultimately, they want property values to rise to market rate. If that could have been accomplished a decade ago, they would have done it. There’s plenty of jockeying for development, and WUMCRC (and others) have been happy to be patient as they see a bright future for the neighborhood. There have been efforts to built infill on the south side of Manchester, but they would have all been heavily subsidized with virtually no market rate for sale homes. This has changed. Property values are rising in the neighborhood now and developers, at least a half dozen in addition to those already named in these comments, are building.

          • Adam

            okay. about how many lots total would you say there are in FPSE? even if WUMCRC and the Gills and whoever else are holding on to property, they are ultimately working to raise property values, which is something that a few community gardens simply won’t accomplish in FPSE. and this definitely isn’t a Northside-like scenario, as substantial progress has already been made. in your opinion, are these developers paying fair prices for the properties that they acquire? Are they “pressuring” people out?

          • D Scott

            Please watch My Brooklyn it’s on PBS . It shows how slick and dirty developers can be. It also shows how local government representatives totally sell out their people. This is a documentary on Brooklyn NY, a city with tons of amenities and plenty of density. They definitely “didn’t harp on the human cost” there.
            First and foremost cities are built for people, when city planners lose compassion for us, we lose!
            Are they pressuring people out? Alderman Roddy has been king here for twenty-five years. He condensed five neighborhood associations into one, “too much diverse input”, he said. He then orchestrated the creation of Park Central, a private not for profit corporation which he controls completely. It’s commonly known that aldermen have great influence with the building division concerning their wards. They can chose their own NSO’s which report to them directly. With decades in office he’s sure to have “connections” in many City Departments. Roddy has said on record that he has no problems directing the police to any of his concerns. Yes, they are pressuring people out. Developers must submit their proposals to Park Central, ( they tell King Joe whose property they want), then he directs every city resource against his own people. It’s very bad for us long time home owners here. Developers won’t offer us enough to relocate because the alderman has assured them that he can drive us out so they can steal it.

          • Adam

            A documentary about Brooklyn and your opinion on Roddy’s aldermanship is not evidence that developers are strong-arming residents out of their homes in FPSE.

            “Developers won’t offer us enough to relocate because the alderman has assured them that he can drive us out so they can steal it.”

            wow, strong words. did you happen to secretly record any of these assurances?

          • Alex Ihnen

            You can search Dan Scott and Forest Park Southeast if you want to know more. It’s true that some are favored over others. You have to decide yourself if it’s justified or not.

          • Adam

            Thanks for the info. I’ll look into it. I’ll only add that favoring certain developers is not the same as “pressuring” people out and “stealing” their properties.

          • Adam

            Thanks for the info. I’ll look into it. I’ll only add that favoring certain developers is not the same as “pressuring” people out and “stealing” their properties.

          • Adam

            Ah, yes. I remember reading about this. It seems to me that both Mr. Scott and Ald. Roddy may have behaved poorly. Still, though, one questionable incident doesn’t demonstrate a trend of “pressuring” people out of the neighborhood.

          • Adam

            Ah, yes. I remember reading about this. It seems to me that both Mr. Scott and Ald. Roddy may have behaved poorly. Still, though, one questionable incident doesn’t demonstrate a trend of “pressuring” people out of the neighborhood.

          • Alex Ihnen

            You can search Dan Scott and Forest Park Southeast if you want to know more. It’s true that some are favored over others. You have to decide yourself if it’s justified or not.

          • Not Buying It

            Listen, there are only 5 community gardens in the neighborhood. If outsiders get their way two will be gone. The 3rd one is being land banked so that will be developed on as well. That leaves TWO. You can’t add in a community garden – when there is no land available!
            There are not thousands of vacant lots available in Forest Park SE. There is hardly any property for sale. Developers are complaining to the Alderman about it. So residents are being pressured to sell – but the prices they are being offered are below value. Why? Because of all of the derelict/vacant buildings being held by developers that affect the comps.
            It’s obvious that you don’t live in my neighborhood so there is no point in trying to convince you of importance of having public spaces such as gardens to maintain a healthy, whole, community. People of different economic and racial backgrounds benefit from living together – especially in urban areas. Community gardens are places where people from different backgrounds interact and form bonds. So my suggestion to you is the same one I made to Realist – if you don’t like what you see – go to the county. It’s nothing but retail out there.

          • Adam

            5 community gardens is a lot for a small neighborhood, and currently only one of them has been targeted for construction, not two.

            i was referring to thousands of vacant lots throughout the city, many of which are in neighborhoods with similar demographics to FPSE. i assume you would rather see more gardens than more buildings and residents in those neighborhoods as well.

            “Developers are complaining to the Alderman about it. So residents are being pressured to sell – but the prices they are being offered are below value. Why? Because of all of the derelict/vacant buildings being held by developers that affect the comps.”

            let’s see some proof.

            “You have never seen the kids planting or playing there over the past 10 years. No “services” or “amenties” replace that.”

            ah, yes, the children will never be able to plant or play again unless this particular garden remains. i just don’t buy that there’s a shortage of space for gardens. and frankly, i think there are a few services that are at least as important.

            “So my suggestion to you is the same one I made to Realist – if you don’t like what you see – go to the county. It’s nothing but retail out there.”

            you don’t seem to get it. i don’t want “nothing but retail”. i want a city in which people—yep, even low-income people—can access the jobs and amenities that they need efficiently either on foot or via public transit, and in which it is safe to do so. THAT is the purpose of cities, and that will not happen until the city replaces much of its lost population, which requires construction since so much of our original built environment is gone. to suggest that a city is more appropriate for gardening than the county is absurd. and i’m not even disparaging community gardens. i think they’re great, and can really add to a neighborhood that already has its more important elements in order. but your priorities are backward if you think that community gardens are going to fix this city’s problems.

          • Not Buying It

            2 gardens
            4201 NORFOLK
            4351 GIBSON
            1 garden -slated for infill housing in near future
            4330 – 4332 CHOUTEAU

            2+1 = 3

          • Adam

            okay, two gardens. as for the third, what does “slated” mean? do plans exist or not?

          • Not Buying It

            Why don’t you ask the local banker/ developer/ board member who wrote and signed the check to LRA?

          • Not Buying It

            A part of this city’s problem is people like you,and many others, who pretend to know what is best for us. You have no firsthand knowledge. Quality of life in a neighborhood requires much more than the clubs and bars that make up The Grove Entertainment district. Residents have to put up with that mess because of Park Central and Alderman Roddy, Too much density – of liquor licenses. And at a meeting which I attended Roddy said he will keep handing them out when we asked him to stop.

          • Adam

            i’m not pretending to know anything. i’m looking at healthy neighborhoods in other cities and contrasting what they have to what FPSE doesn’t have, namely people and commerce. some of that commerce includes entertainment, but If you had actually read ANY of my posts, you’d see that nowhere did I champion more “entertainment district”. i mentioned grocery stores and coffee shops and bakeries, for example. so let me know when you’re finished putting words in my mouth.

          • Not Buying It

            A part of this city’s problem is people like you,and many others, who pretend to know what is best for us. You have no firsthand knowledge. Quality of life in a neighborhood requires much more than the clubs and bars that make up The Grove Entertainment district. Residents have to put up with that mess because of Park Central and Alderman Roddy, Too much density – of liquor licenses. And at a meeting which I attended Roddy said he will keep handing them out when we asked him to stop.

          • Adam

            80 + 30-something is not “well over a hundred”. it’s 119 at most. and 119 is a tiny fraction of the number of vacant properties in FPSE. good try.

            “In reality, the above mentioned property owners are driving property values down more so than anyone or anything in the neighborhood.”

            wow, for somebody who complains about people not having accurate information as much as you do, one would think you’d have some actual numbers to support statements like this. you know, like property values correlated to developer owned properties or something like that.

            and yeah, totally, if you don’t like alleys full of crumbling buildings move to the county! but if you want thousands of vacant lots and gardens everywhere, then the city is the place for you!

        • STLEnginerd

          After reading all the responses I am somewhat sympathetic to not buying it’s reasoning. Certainly with all the proposed development, the grove will be a very different place in a few years. Is there really a need to rush the redevelopment of these gardens which are splendid examples of simple ways a neighborhood can beautify their neighborhood. They certainly have been good stewards of the land buying its references to widespread land banking by the very developers who sit on the derelict properties which are holding back property values rings a least partially true.

          That said. Who owns the two gardens? Doesn’t this person or entity have the rite to redevelop it. Hasn’t the community garden concept been at least partially sold on the premise that it is a temporary use of land u til such time as a viable redevlopment plan is found. Why has no one bothered to form a community ownership structure for either these properties. The neighborhood has to have some say in how land in their community is used but private property owners also need to be allowed to g berate value from said property.

    • matimal

      Parking minimums have been eliminated in some Cincinnati neighborhoods. any chance of this in any St. Louis neighborhoods?

  • Adam

    Are those retail bays on the side elevation of the Grove Investments model?

    • John R

      yes…. retail would be fronting Tower Grove and Boyle while resident entry would be on Gibson (and rear) and Norfolk (and rear). These are skinny properties so to get two townhomes + retail is pretty remarkable. It’ll be interesting to see what kind of retail would fit well with the locations and space. btw, the Tower Grove/Gibson building would also conceal more of the Aventura mini-me spot across the alley which is nice but I do have to admit I enjoy the nice garden that is the current use.

      • Adam

        nice.