10-Unit Condo Building Proposed for Central West End

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The St. Louis City Preservation Board will review a proposal for shoehorning a 10-unit condo building into a long-vacant corner in the city’s Central West End. The Cultural Resources Office is recommending preliminary approval of the project. While only sketches of the project are available, the three-story building shows a residential entrance on Maryland, with garage entrance on the alley to access 10 ground level parking spaces. A Sanborn Fire Insurance map included in the Preservation Board materials depicts residential buildings that once faced Boyle Street.

[4301 Maryland Avenue proposal – Central West End Historic District]

Owner/Applicant:
Lauren and Mark Mathis

Staff Recommendation: That the Preservation Board grant preliminary approval to the proposal, subject to review of final documents, design details and materials by the Cultural Resources Office.

The Project: The applicants propose to construct a ten-unit three story condo building on a single vacant parcel. All new residential construction in Local Historic Districts is brought to the Preservation Board for review on a preliminary basis prior to permitting.

Preliminary Findings and Conclusion:
The Cultural Resources Office’s consideration of the criteria for new residential construction in the
Central West End Historic District Standards led to these preliminary findings:

  • The proposed site for construction, 4301 Maryland Avenue, is located in the Central West
    End Local Historic District.
  • The siting, scale, proportions, roof shape, and exterior materials comply with the
    Standards.
  • The building’s floor heights, water-table, and foundation do not line up with the
    neighboring property due to the ground floor garage.
  • The setback along Maryland cannot be followed due to the shape of the parcel.

Based on the preliminary findings, the Cultural Resources Office recommends that the Preservation Board grant preliminary approval for the proposed new construction with the condition that final drawings, design details, and exterior materials be approved by the Cultural Resources Office.

________________________

Video of Preservation Board meeting, added 5/24/17:

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  • Nick

    It looks like what’s labeled South Elevation is actually the north side. However, that still doesn’t jive with the the last drawing, which shows a staircase on the north side. So overall I’m wholly confused.

    Also, my guess is that east-facing wall will look better in real life.

  • Presbyterian

    I appreciate the density. And I am excited to see ths site developed. But I wish the city would demand better design.

    That blank brick wall facing the sidewalk along Boyle will foster a pretty oppressive pedestrian experience. There’s just nothing delicate to balance out the heaviness of this design.

    Elsewhere in the Central West End, first floor parking garages have been partially excavated and buried to keep the street level active. But here, they’re placing an unexcavated ground level garage with a blank masony wall right across from Juniper and West End Grill.

    If I had a vote, I’d vote no and wait for something with a better pedestrian experience. Let’s hope for some lush landscaping to help shield the first floor of the building.

    • John

      Agreed. I thought the same thing. The brick wall is uninspiring and imposing. (I do like brick over siding, though!) The concept could and should be redesigned to be more aesthetically pleasing. Please show some tree and landscaping placement as well.

      • Imran

        Maybe a bench or chess table or bike rack or a pedestrian access on Boyle. Anything to try and humanize this first floor dead space.