Friday Live Chat

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live chat

It’s back, the Friday Live Chat. You know what to do – just use the comments section below. We’re open from 2-3pm today:

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  • Riggle

    Soulard has some great potential spots for infill… the under used AB -Inbev lots! I’m sure a ton of great houses were torn down to make way for those lots which are no longer used. Any chance ab-inbev would sell? In our lifetimes?

    • Alex Ihnen

      Good question. They should, but doubtful they will.

  • Riggle

    Any word on the possible Downtown Lucky’s… totally dead or just almost dead?

    • Alex Ihnen

      To be honest, I’ve heard nothing either way.

    • Alex Ihnen

      How ya been, Riggle?

  • matt

    Downtown seems on the edge of a huge surge if most of the proposed projects get done. What’s the next step to making it a much better downtown? Walkable development all the way to soulard? Just nicer sidewalks and lighting and things at more corners? More retail/stores?

    • Alex Ihnen

      Connections to surrounding neighborhoods – absolutely the walk to/from Soulard should be great. Lafayette Square too, and Carr Square, Old North, and so on. Eventually N/S MetroLink could help connect, but opening streets, decent sidewalks, lighting, bike lanes, etc. could help greatly!

      • matt

        Yeah I think short term cleaning up sidewalks and streets downtown is the best idea. Longer term has to connect to other neighborhoods I think to be really successful.

      • Riggle

        The walk from Soulard could be made alot better with just a few infill projects around 8th street. If Purina built some structured parking… As far as Laf Sq you have to cross the train yard. And ameren doesn’t help. I see it as a tougher thing to mitigate.

        • Alex Ihnen

          I believe this area was just rezoned to allow mixed-use and residential projects, which had been prohibited for decades. I’m not currently finding the story or info.

          • Goat314

            Yes that area was rezoned, apparently there was developer interest in the area which prompted that rezoning. Seems like a natural area for master planned mixed-use development.

  • MatthewHibbard

    Hey Alex, why isn’t anyone chatting today?

    • Alex Ihnen

      You and I are!

      • MatthewHibbard

        Woooo!

        • Alex Ihnen

          When does North-South MetroLink break ground? Is that what Secretary Castro is announcing on Monday?

          • MatthewHibbard

            Those are great questions, which unfortunately, I do not have answer to. #sadface

          • Goat314

            I think we are looking at a choice neighborhood grant announcement for the near northside

          • Alex Ihnen

            I think you’re right!

    • Alex Ihnen

      A) Everyone’s exhausted from all the development news.
      B) Everyone’s buying their Peter Rush sketch print.
      C) Everyone’s saving it for the Metro Live Chat.

      • MatthewHibbard

        Well….C) People are too late because it was on WEDNESDAY!

    • Alex Ihnen

      So what’s your take in driverless cars/buses and their potential implementation and affect on urban, and separately suburban, transportation, and public transit, in St. Louis?

      • MatthewHibbard

        Autonomous cars are part of a long continuum that could trickle down to affect transportation, particularly public transportation, however I think it’s still a way off from complete implementation. In my opinion, driverless technology will start at the micro-level, with your Teslas and other manufacturers. This movement will begin to create a viable market and thus create a track record of reliability and safety (if successful). We’re already seeing autonomous technology being used in logistics and distribution, so it’s natural that this technology spreads outside of the warehouse and on to the street grid. Like the introduction of automobiles and the interstate highway system, infrastructure will adapt — or at least be modified to handle this new technology. At this time, I’m not sure it will shift migration patterns — at least not at the beginning, but we shall see.

  • pat

    So there is still the lot owned by the Koman Group right? Does this project scare off the potential for that site to be developed?

    • Alex Ihnen

      At Kingshighway/Lindell? I believe it’s owned by Koplar and KPF/Koman were assisting with development planning. It certainly does impact it, but if the West Pine project moves ahead and is successful, it could be a big boost/proof of market. We’ll see.

      • pat

        Thanks

  • Nick

    You have hinted on Twitter before yesterday that we aren’t done with major announcements for 2016. With the new CWE tower annoucement, are we done with major announcements for 2016 or is there more to come in the next couple weeks?

    • Alex Ihnen

      I’m going to say we’re more/less done. I’d be happy to be surprised, and there are several big ideas out there, but whether they land in 2016 (with just a couple weeks to go), I don’t think so.

      • Goat314

        The CWE seems to be approaching full build out. Do you think the CWE will be the first city neighborhood to reach a critical mass in our lifetime? Or do you think FPSE has a better chance?

        • Alex Ihnen

          In terms of residential/retail density, the CWE will be first. There are simply too many single-family homes in FPSE to get there. Though there is more mid-rise mixed-use coming, so maybe I underestimate it. The CWE still has the space to add significantly more population – though the retail puzzle is harder since there isn’t a natural space to add much other than small shops.

      • Goat314

        Can you give us a hint about what “big ideas” may be on the horizon?

        • Alex Ihnen

          I’m thinking of the not-so-secret things…another phase for BPV, future of the Railway Exchange, Butler Bros Building, Millennium Hotel, and so on.

          • Goat314

            RRX building could be a game changer for the core of downtown if executed correctly.