Building Permit Issued for New UIC Mixed Use Building in the Grove (4321 Manchester)

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Click here to read the earlier nextSTL news item on this development.

A $1.2 million building permit has been issued to 4321-4325 Manchester, LLC, developer of that address along Manchester in the Grove, to construct a 20-unit mixed use building with 1,400 square feet of ground floor retail space. Currently, a one-story commercial building (a former donut shop) sits on the site. The designer of the building is UIC, perhaps better known for its Botanical Grove development one mile south, and the developer is Paramount Property Development.

Below is a rendering of the proposed structure:


And here is a streetscape shot:


Below is the Donut Shop that is set to be demolished to make way for the new building:


Click here for the development’s web site.

Click here for a map of the area.

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  • John R

    By the looks of it, pretty soon. Maybe summer? Just a guess.

  • Alex Devlin

    I’m going to be looking for apartments soon. Any idea on completion?

  • Kaylick

    I own a house in the Grove and, well, while this seems like good news, I think it’s actually going to hurt in the long term more than help. And I can some it up in something hopefully everyone can understand … Washington Ave. And i’m not saying Wash Ave is a bad thing, just that it doesn’t seem to be as great as it could be.

    Wash Ave is another area that was an entertainment district where Apts/lofts/condos were built and high rents charged. Started off well, but like the story about the young person that couldn’t afford it, now many of them are empty. And In my opinion, Wash Ave isn’t quite the “hot spot” it was supposed to be. This seems to be a familiar “mistake” made here in St Louis. Always charging too much and wanting top dollar. Never really in it for the long haul. Just my opinion from an outsider of course.

    I moved here from Portland 4 years ago because, from the outside, it looked like St Louis was working to better the city and be a little more progressive. Portland when an area was being redeveloped did something pretty amazing. In some areas, when a new building for apts/lofts/etc was being built, a percentage had to be lower income. Not LOW INCOME/low rent, but lower income. Like between $30 – $45,000 or something. And the rents would be $700 or so for that percentage of rooms. I hated the idea at first, but after a few years, you really saw the benefit. And the story about the MO Baptist person highlights it.

    The majority of “lower income” folks that Portland was targeting was College Students or recent grads. These folks like to live in the downtown areas, walk, bike, etc and cater to the businesses. Over time, they make more money, start families, and some stay, but others move on. The cycle then repeats with newer college people. This creates the dynamics of a busy area that also attracts grocery stores, and more retail. The units priced at higher values also get sold/rented and people tend to stay, because of the ongoing business development in the area.

    I like to say, development has a chicken/egg which comes first problem. Business doesn’t want to build if there are no people to shop them. Residents don’t want to live somewhere with no amenities. Someone has to give in first. And if you think about it, that’s easy. Government can take the chance and reduce taxes and give incentives for a short period of time to give an area time to develop.

    Lots more I can say about this, but I think that’s enough for now. I am glad to see me happening in the Grove/FPSE area. But, I’d prefer that it be more long term sustainable.

    • moorlander

      Why do you think “many” of the apartments on wash avenue are empty? Last I hear occupancy was 90%+ downtown.

      • Kaylick

        I honestly have no data to back it. Just my perception.

  • Guest

    The rent will range from $1100 to $1450. Very pricey for that area and for most people in general. For a 1 bedroom apartment, $1100 is just too much. It is also located in an entertainment area that is very enticing to young people to have too much fun.

    Let me tell you a cautionary tale about high rent and a young person. There was a MO Baptist college graduate who moved into a brand new Soulard loft and bought brand new furniture for her place (Dad paid for it all). She had a job downtown. She was making her $600 – $800 monthly payment on her student loan of $60K and then she realized that she could not afford food after making her loft rent and student loan payments. Her mother brought her a bag of groceries and told her to cook her meals at home in her loft and she told her “No”. She enjoyed going out to the Soulard bars and having a good time.

    Well, what happened next? Her dad forced her to quit her downtown job. They had to pay for her to break her loft lease. She was forced to move back home with her parents in St. Peters and she got a sales job in Chesterfield. Her brand new furniture could not fit in her old bedroom and so her parents had to pay for it to be put in storage. She now lives at home and makes payments on her student loan. What’s the moral of this story? If the rent is too damn high for a young person with loan repayment, then the person will struggle with other life expenses.

    Why was her student loan $60K, instead of say something more modest, $40K? This is the kicker. Because when she attended MO Baptist, she chose to live off-campus in an apartment rather than in the dorms on campus (cheaper) or even at home with mom and dad (free). She could have saved money by just living at home, which is where she ended up today. At the age of 28, she lives at home in her old bedroom. Funny how that worked out that way.

    • Alex Ihnen

      The rent isn’t too high per se, but the person to cite made some bad financial decisions. The proposed rents for this development are below those of other apartments in The Grove. It’s a hot area and rents will continue to rise.

      • DeepPockets

        I have young people’s interest at heart and want them to succeed financially. It’s too expensive for that area–too damn high compared to median area rent and median area income. I would not want young people to spend that kind of money on expensive rent and in an entertainment area no less where they could possibly “drink away the grocery money”. For that kind of money, you could be making mortgage payments and own a house. Again, I repeat–the rent is too damn high for any young person, regardless of your income level. Period.

        Young people have no business spending that kind of money (and it doesn’t even include utilities). Better to live with mom and dad or get a cheap condo with roommates. Live in an older apartment where the rent is half as much. You have lots of choices in St. Louis. Choose wisely. Try Bevo Mill area. It’s one of the cheapest, has immigrants from whom you can learn how to live the good life simply and practically, and is fairly central and safe.

        I’ve lived on the West coast some years ago where people hunted for apartment for as much as 6 months before landing something. The best rent is the most affordable in a decent location. Try to spend as little as you can on housing as possible. Pocket the remainder in a savings account because hard times may come in your future. Just live simply like immigrants do. Always ask yourself: “What would a savvy immigrant do?” You will thank me for it one day.

  • John R

    Is a parking lot on the vacant spot across the street still part of the plan? Not too thrilled about that but hopefully the project is a success. And brings a donut shop to the retail portion! In other donut news, California Donuts on S. Jefferson appears poised for a renewal later this Spring… hopefully with the neon sign restored.

  • Michael C.

    Great news!

  • moe

    1) 1.2 million seems awfully expensive for only 20 units. Will these be apartments or condos?
    2) We use to love getting donuts from here in the 70’s. The Grove could use a donut shop.
    3) Is it just me that finds that some urbanist proponents only like infill projects if it’s jarringly different from the nearby buildings? I like the second floor overhand, but the façade….color me unimpressed and disappointed.

    • matthb

      $60,000 per unit is pretty reasonable for new market rate apartments.

    • Adam

      i think “some urbanist proponents” would just like to see some contemporary architecture thrown into the mix. while i certainly appreciate a well-done traditional design, i love the design of this building and think it complements it’s neighbors nicely. i really don’t see what’s jarring about it—it’s not neon green or anything—but personally i think a little bit of jarring can be good.