Renovated Pelican Building, 116-Apartment Infill Planned for South Grand

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2254-south-grand_2

The long-vacant Pelican Building on South Grand just north of Tower Grove Park may have a new life. The adjacent vacant YMCA appears to not be so lucky. Plans by property owner MBR Shenandoah LLC call for a new 116-unit apartment building to replace the YMCA. The Pelican Building would undergo an historic renovation utilizing historic tax credits.

The site was purchased for $1.8M and the redevelopment plan could total more than $18M. What’s known about the project is included in the city’s Land Clearance for Redevelopment Authority (LCRA) meeting materials for this month. The developer is requesting the site be blighted and a 10-year tax abatement be granted. Sixth ward Alderwoman Christine Ingrassia supports the project and abatement.

MBR Management Corporation is the owner of 72 Dominos Pizza franchises in the Missouri area. It’s long been rumored at the the South Grand Dominoes would relocated to this development, though that has not been confirmed. Josh Udelhofen, previously of Koman Group and now with Altus Properties, is listed as co-developer on LCRA documents.

*if you want to see the interior of the YMCA building before it’s gone, click here

Pelican Court, South Grand - St. Louis, MO

Last April we posted the development plan for retail and office space at this location: Proposal Would Replace Vacant YMCA with Office & Retail, Rehab Pelican Building

Pelican Court, South Grand - St. Louis, MO

Mixed-use development may be coming to the long vacant YMCA and Pelican Building site on South Grand Boulevard. Several blocks north of the historic, and busy South Grand business district. The property is now under contract by First & Main Properties, led by Richard Robinson. Planned is a total of 35,276K sf, including a full rehabilitation of the corner Pelican Building, and construction of two-story retail and office building on the YMCA site designed by TR,i Architects.

This stretch just north of Tower Grove Park had struggled with vacancy as neighbors have debated the type of development desired. Quik Trip’s proposal for a gas station in the site, was met met with loud opposition from neighbors. Another proposal to for an animal therapy business didn’t get off the ground. Two blocks south, a standalone Starbucks on a vacant auto repair site moved forward only after significant feedback and review. There are new condos here, but also drive-through fast food.

Pelican Court, South Grand - St. Louis, MO

 

Pelican Court, South Grand - St. Louis, MO

 

Continue reading: Proposal Would Replace Vacant YMCA with Office & Retail, Rehab Pelican Building

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  • Dahmen Piotraschke

    why ? the YMCA was not even open…so this is good, as it will most likely be moved into a new space that can be utilized quickly. Plus more housing along South Grand is great for Tower Grove and property values for the other struggling new and old properties.

  • Hobbes

    Sad to lose the Y, a truly beautiful building. The new design is uninspired, lacks design elements, basically it is totally ignorable. A total yawner created by engineers, not architects. Best that can be said about it is that it isn’t awful.

    • Catherine

      I think what we can see from the rendering is good. It’s pedestrian-scaled, keeps to the urban density of the surrounding areas, and does not add curb cuts on Grand. What the design elements look like, I think is silly to comment on at this point. We can’t see anything about the building’s aesthetics from the rendering, but I am hopeful they are in line with the surrounding buildings while also not trying to copy the historical architecture.

      • Ihanaf

        It is a shame though that we don’t push the envelope enough for creative design that works within the confines of what is historically there already. Too many projects starting with razing the site and creating another clean slate.

        • Catherine

          I agree! I am all for historical redevelopment when possible. I went to this YMCA as a child, and have fond memories there. That being said, it closed because of demand and that demand has not returned. The building is in disrepair and is not ADA accessible. It’s re-use isn’t as easy as many, and, despite what some say, not everything is worth saving. Especially if other options are on the table.

  • Riggle

    Just an FYI, the starbucks replaced Rudy’s dry cleaners (which used to have gas, but hadn’t for years when it closed).

  • TGEResident

    That seems like quite a few apartments at the location, especially right next to Compton Heights and Tower Grove East which is full of single family homes. The drawing above does not provide a great scope or vision for that corner. Any idea what the expected rent would be on in those apartments? Interesting to see what inspired the Alderwoman to support the idea.

    • jhoff1257

      There are 3 large multi-family buildings across the street from this development, those also back up to single family homes. Russell has quite a few large multi-family buildings that back up to Compton Heights’ single family homes too. Grand is a pretty dense corridor anyway, especially once you get south of 44.

      My guess the alderwoman was “inspired” to support this and the incentives because a 116 unit apartment building and a rehabed Pelican building produce far more benefit to her ward and the city (even with incentives) then a couple of vacant buildings that as of right now produce nothing.

      • TGEResident

        I could be mistaken, but I think the multi-family buildings across the street consist of condo/townhomes that are on the market for upwards of $180k, less dense with underground parking. Thats much different than 116 unit facility, a large parking lot, and a franchise pizza delivery joint..

        • jhoff1257

          Condos, apartments, whatever. Still multi-family buildings with a higher density then single family homes, which was my original point. The use for this proposed development is not outside of the norm for this area. Also the pizza joint already exists, it would simply move up the street from it’s current location near Arsenal, hardly a major change for the neighborhood. 116 units isn’t that big either. My guess is the majority will be one bedroom units with a few two bedrooms and even fewer three bedrooms. We’re talking maybe 200 additional (tax paying, business supporting) people here.

        • Tom Klein

          I’m a home owner in TGE and I don’t understand your concern. Increased density (and the many benefits of such density) are a net positive for our community, and long term, our home values.

          Glad our alderwoman is supporting mixed-use density in our neighborhood. If anything, I’d like to see more of this.

          • Riggle

            She also loves QT

      • Alex Ihnen

        Right. Looking at the map, the site borders three single-family homes, a fire station, a mixed use building, three-story condos, and various retail – all on a major city arterial. The apartments would add less traffic and activity (if one is looking to avoid such things) than the site did as a YMCA.

      • Riggle

        Same one who brought you the QT on Jefferson and Chouteau

      • Hobbes

        Which is why the city needs to crack down on landlords who allow their property to deteriorate.

    • thomas h benton

      There’s actually quite a bit of multi family in TGE. While not perfect, this seems like a decent plan for a white elephant (the YMCA) while preserving a cool building (the pelican).

    • Riggle

      I used to tell myself City people weren’t like this…

    • Imran

      If you want local businesses to succeed and build upon a safe walkable community, you need to build in residential density every chance you get.

    • Um, I live in a multi-family building, right in the middle of TGE, on a block that’s entirely multi-family, next to another block that’s entirely multifamily. Those blocks are surrounded by duplexes. So…no idea what you’re talking about. Bye Felicia.

  • rgbose

    Where are the curb cuts?

    • Alex Ihnen

      I believe the image above only depicts existing curb cuts and that access will be from Vanderburgh by the fire station, or Shenandoah.

  • rgbose

    Glad our preservation dilemmas are more and more “demo fro something” rather than “demo for nothing”

  • STLrainbow

    fwiw, I talked with the owner of the building where Dominos is now last week and he said they would be moving out… apparently it is one of the highest-producing locations in the state but corporate was giving the franchisee grief about no dedicated parking.

    The landlord, who is a great guy and owns the ice cream place with his wife, wasn’t worried at all about finding a new tenant.

    • Hobbes

      That’s great news!!! No more chains on south Grand. Maybe we’ll finally get an Indian restaurant there.

      • Riggle

        Chains prove retail viability, you don’t have to patronize them but are a good sign.

        • Hobbes

          Chains kill locally owned mom and pop restaurants which can’t compete with the cash owners like Dominos owner whathisname dumps into marketing, etc. Chains destroy the uniqueness of a town, homogenizing our cities till they all look the same. Ugly. Chains are owned by billionaires in New York who do not give a damn what they do to your town. Chains pay their workers squat. Chains are a menace to society. Oh, I thought I did have to patronize them. Thanks for telling me!

          • Riggle

            St Louis City doesn’t really attract many chains. And pretty much zero in walkable areas, it will be a good day in this city when nation retail chains WANT to open in our walkable neighborhoods. Chains have always been a part of south grand. Remember Woolworths? Should we boycott the medicine shop? Even fucking Wei Hong bakery is a local chain.