Lux Living’s proposal for an apartment building on the 1000 block of S Kingshighway at Oakland in the Forest Park Southeast neighborhood will be presented and discussed at the FPSE Neighborhood Association meeting September 21st. The saga of the long vacant and deteriorating properties held by Drury could come to an end.
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The developer proposes a 6- story building with 144 apartments (32 Studios, 101 One Bedroom, 11 Two Bedroom Units) to replace the seven buildings on the 1000 block of South Kingshighway. The building steps down in the rear with three stories at Oakland and one at Arco with amenity decks on top. Apartments have some sort of balcony- recessed, protruding, or Juliet. Like at Chelsea there’s a publicly-accessible bistro in the lobby with a courtyard facing Kingshighway for spectating the jaydriving on the traffic sewer. The design team consists of VE Design Group and Burkhart Elliott Creative.
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The proposal is scaled-down from one circulated a few months ago which had 177 units, one more story, and extended to the east beyond the alley to include razing a few buildings along Oakland and Arco for new townhome-looking two story buildings flanking a ground level pool and amenity area.
There is a deed restriction prohibiting short-term rentals like Airbnb. I speculate Drury added that so as not to compete with their hotel, should it ever happen. Lux Living’s renting of apartments via Airbnb under the profile TheStay has ruffled some feathers and likely would have been a topic for the neighborhood meeting.
There would be 144 parking spaces within, all underground accessed from the rear alley, meeting the city’s mandate of 1 space per dwelling unit. But in this case it’s the maximum permitted under the FPSE form-based code. For parcels designated “Neighborhood Core” which are primarily along Kingshighway, there is no parking minimum for residential uses. If, like at Lux Living’s Chelsea, parking is included in the rent, car-free tenants will end up subsidizing those with cars. Underground spaces are all that more expensive driving up rents. #parkingsmartstl
The developer believes they’ve met requirements of the zoning and form-based codes and thus won’t need any variances. They also will not seek tax incentives, though their chances would have been next to nil had they sought one. The existing buildings are in the FPSE Historic District, so the demolition will go to the Cultural Resource Office and likely before the Preservation Board.
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The view of Forest Park Southeast from Kingshighway has long belied the massive investment and change in the neighborhood behind. The deterioration of Drury’s properties has been a source of consternation for neighborhood residents. There is also skepticism of the developer among some neighborhood residents including FPSE NA board members.