By. Chris Stritzel
After appearing in City documents for a while, SLU made it official and published a blog post detailing the new Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering (or ISE) building. The new building will rise just East of Ritter Hall (which sits along Grand) and will replace green space and the "dolphin fountain". According to SLU, the new 3 floor, 90,000 square foot facility will be their second silver leed building on campus. The ISE building will house state of the art lab spaces that are flexible as well as innovative. According to a SLU representative, "the ISE building will be a showcase structure detailing what the future of educating in lab space looks like".
The $50 Million project will also include the renovation of existing labs in nearby buildings to bring them up to date. This part of the SLU campus is home to several engineering schools and is named "the Parks College". Two buildings on this site have names of some known companies, Monsanto and McDonnel Douglas Hall. The new ISE building does not have a name yet but SLUI says that they are paying for it through a bond issue that they will pay off over the next several years. The new ISE building will begin construction this November and will be open by the Summer of 2020. The architecture firm is Hastings+Chivetta and the main contractor for the project is BSI.
SLU stresses that more information about the new ISE building will be made available after the start of the Fall Semester of the 2018-2019 school year.
For those wanting to view additional renderings, the gallery below includes three additional views. Each one is detailed by clicking on the photos.
By. Chris Stritzel
The neighborhoods surrounding Tower Grove Park have been doing really well in recent years. New construction, historic restoration and landscaping improvements are making these neighborhoods more enjoyable. Perhaps the neighborhood seeing tons of historic restorations is Shaw. Shaw has seen the redevelopment of the Shaw Theater, soon to be Baileys Range, Fiddlefern Café project, multiple gas station conversions, Ices Plain and Fancy moving in, and multiple house restorations among other things. Now, the Carroll Building, at 4000 Shenandoah, will be redeveloped to include apartments, retail space and the home of Carroll Service (a heating and cooling company). According to the Shaw Neighborhood Improvement Association, the building was acquired by the Carroll Family in 1960s and have served the neighborhood with heating and cooling services ever since. As the building ages, it is time to give it a facelift.
The Carrolls are nearly ready to begin their restoration project as financing nears completion. Advertisement boards showing renderings and contacts have been posted on the Shenandoah and Lawrence sides of the building. The plan is to clean the façade of the building off and remove the ugly green boards that have boarded up the windows for sometime. Then, new windows would be installed to be up to date. Then, restoration work would move into the inside where 5 retail spaces would eb made out of the current building as well as three apartments. Retail spaces would very with the two largest fronting Shenandoah and two smaller ones facing Lawrence. Carroll Service would have their office along Lawrence according to plans.
The retail spaces along Shenandoah would be around 1450SF in size while the ones on Lawrence will be substantially smaller but large enough to operate a café or small boutique out of. The second floor would have three modestly sized apartments. While there is no defined timeline yet, it all appears to be moving forward at this point. We have contacted the Carrolls for more information but if you or someone you know is interested in opening a business here, feel free to contact the Carrolls in one of three options...
1. By Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
2. By Phone: 314-371-5103
3. By Facebook: Carroll Property
Photos of the Building by: Shaw Neighborhood Improvement Association
By. Chris Stritzel
As MOFO Urban Residences begins on it's 3rd Floor, a block South, a new proposal has been unveiled to convert a building and vacant lot at 3201 Morgan Ford into 20 apartment units. The name of the project?-WYMO. The plan consists of renovating and restoring the 1902 corner structure at Wyoming and Morgan Ford as well as the construction of a new, 4 Floor "L" shaped addition to the South and West. As stated earlier, this will add 20 apartments to Tower Grove South as well as new retail space and parking spaces for the residents. Another amenity includes "front lawns" for the residents who live on the 4th floor of the new building.
The Land Clearance for Redevelopment Authority (LCRA) has reviewed the project at their meeting on July 24th. A 95% tax abatement has been recommended by the LCRA and is supported by Ward 10 Alderman, Joseph Vollmer. Also supported by Alderman Vollmer is the resolution to declare the property blighted for the tax abatements and redevelopment plan. The plan passed the LCRA board and now a Planning Commission and Board of Aldermen meeting is in order to fully approve of the project's tax abatement and blighting resolution. I don't see any problems happening there as this development is a smart one, where old and new blend together seamlessly.
No timeline has been given for the project. The project's architect will be JEMA, who also designed MOFO down the road (3172 Morgan Ford). Both of the projects combines symbolize nearly $11 Million in investment into Tower Grove South by the AHM Group in recent years. Who knows what else is planned by them. The AHM Group acquired the current building and neighboring lot for $325,000 earlier this year. This means that the total investment into the project will be $3,725,000. A dense development like this is needed to strengthen a neighborhood like Tower Grove South, which is doing well in terms of occupancy and density.
While all is good on the design end of the project, neighbors have voiced concerns over "size", "design" and "incentives". Some neighbors hope a meeting is called to discuss the project in order to fully decide whether they wan the project.
New St. Louis Story
It is these kind of developments that make neighborhoods thrive and add to their own Central Business Districts. In this case, MOFO and 3201 will add much needed apartments to Tower Grove South and strengthen the neighborhood around it. Without these developments, our City would be lost and the preservation and enhancement of a existing structure is even better. If it were up to me, I would remove the white paint from the bricks to reveal the original bricks underneath. That, I think, would be a huge win.
Additional Rendering and Current Site
By. Chris Stritzel
More renderings. A vacated building. Approval to demolish since March. All seem like for sure signs that 300 South Broadway is ready to go. What adds to it is that the property was rezoned in April. The transformational, and highly controversial, project just has one snag at this point, financing. When I spoke to the developer earlier this week on the matter, he responded by saying that "financing is coming along together nicely" and that building permits should be applied for by the end of August for a construction start date in September. What is controversial about the project is the demolition of the current, and historic, existing structure on site. Many people have been opposed to the demolition of the building since it was announced. advocates for preservation have asked to either save the existing façade or move the building to somewhere else. Both of these options have not come to fruition because of cost or owners unwilling to sell land.
As the dust continues to fly over the loss of the building, things look to be green lighted behind the scenes. I know I shouldn't have been worried about it not happening but was reassured it was happening with two things...
1. HDA Architects slipped and published 4 additional renderings of the project (featuring One Cardinal Way) to Facebook before swiftly taking them down.
2. A sign has been posted on the door of the current 300 South Broadway building stating that "the building is closed" and for more information, "Call this number" (wont be published to this website).
Those things reassured me that this is happening. For some, it is heart breaking to see this building go and even I don't really want to see it go but progress is progress. Downtown needs whatever new construction and development it can get at this point. The building that currently exists is only 7 floors, the new building will be 32. A skyline changer (as seen in the rendering below). Not only that but as Ballpark Village grows, demand will grow for more residential in the near vicinity so building 300 South Broadway will surely help feed demand.
The price tag on 300 South Broadway is $100 Million. With this and Ballaprk Village Phase 2, $360 million in development is happening within a block of each other. This also helps push total ongoing Downtown development to over $500 Million and over $800 Million since 2014. While 268 apartments units will be added to Downtown as a result of 300 South Broadway, the influx of nearly 570 apartment units in a block could weaken the apartment market South of Market. It all depends on rent in the end. While One Cardinal Way has published their rents (ranging from $1435 to $7965 a month), 300 South Broadway hasn't yet. I don't expect rents to be as high at 300 South Broadway so I expect both buildings to cater to different people ho want to live in downtown, but have different budgets.
While the completion date for 300 South Broadway is a long way off (Fall 2020), its effects on downtown will already be felt immediately once demolition begins on the existing structure. Once a crane rises, the mark the building makes on the skyline will be immediately felt. Even though we have to at least December to admire the historic building, we must be ready for the days of future upward growth in Downtown. It may come in the form of demolishing existing, and abandoned, structures or forgetting about the abandoned buildings and building anyway. Either way, 300 South Broadway gives us a look into the future of Downtown high-rises and that is that they wont be North of Market, they will be South of Market and centered around the Stadium. In the end, until construction starts, the clock is ticking.
Facts and Links
Height: 337 Feet
Floor Count: 32
Cost: $100 Million
Developer(s): CA Ventures and White Oak Realty of Chicago
Contractor: Paric (assumed based on track record at 212 and historic façade preservation reports).
Make up of floors: 1- Lobby. 2-7- Parking. 8-31- Apartments (16th Floor is a overlook). 32- rooftop Amenity.
Materials used: Concrete, Glass and Steel
Fun Fact One: Will be taller than One Cardinal Way by 17 feet.
Fun Fact Two: Will be the tallest residential only building in Downtown upon completion (the former Laclede Gas Building does not count as DowntownSTL Inc. and Arcturis have their offices in that building).
Fun Fact Three: Will be the tallest building East of Broadway.
By. Chris Stritzel
On Tuesday July 17th, nearly a year after Phase 2 was revealed, the City of Richmond Heights heard more information about the proposed extension of the Boulevard. It was all to get a ordinance approved for construction of the project. After passing the critical meeting, it appears the Boulevard is moving forward after all and chugging toward full on approval from the city. The development, located just South of the current “The Boulevard” and East of the Galleria, would redevelop a large swath of land that consists of a Mattress Firm and Rally House along with a vacant store space that is used for temporary retail purposes. The current strip mall is depressing and only takes up a small percentage of the lot from Darst to Antler (see site plan).
The Boulevard Phase 2 will consist of the following amenities to truly make this development a mixed use neighborhood...
- A 5 Floor Office Building (up to 200,000 square feet of Class A Space) with retail at the base
- A 6 Floor Apartment Building with retail at the base
- A parking garage that is enclosed and hidden by the residential building. There will be a skywalk connecting the office building to the garage.
- Other retail space not connected to the buildings mentioned.
The one thing Phase 2 leaves out that previous versions included is a hotel. But with the influx of hotels in the Richmond Heights-Brentwood area, it is easy to see why a hotel was left out of the plan. Who knows, maybe Phase 3 will include a hotel but that is way far off. In last years plan, the rendering of the office building showed First Bank as a tenant. The latest edition doesn’t show First Bank at but, the marketing brochure lists First Bank as a tenant along with Deer Creek Coffee. While the marketing process for this just now officially began, it is expected that more office tenants will move into the office building.
A feature not typically found in most office buildings today is a generous 15 feet ceiling height and 33,000 square foot plates. There will also be security on site, a common feature in all of today's Class A office buildings. Overall, then design hasn't changed much since last year when it was announced. The only real major change is the update to the inward facing façade of the office building and the appearance of more brick overall. Another change is the removal of the First Bank logo. You can see the original design linked in this story HERE.
The Taller the Better
A cool thing that the marketing brochure for the office says is that "additional floors can be added". That means that if there is a large enough tenant, the office building could gain a few floors ( maximum of two additional floors). Because each floor plate is 33,000 square feet, the maximum amount of office space that you can have is 198,000 square feet. That is almost the advertised 200,000 but it works. The taller the better! The extra height, as seen in the renderings included here, will make the building more visible thus making tenants want to have their name on the building.
The plans featured above call for construction to be underway by the fall with the first tenant able to move in by the late Winter of 2019. That is if the additional two floors aren't added. With the two extra floors, I say Spring 2020.
By. Chris Stritzel
After being approved by the planning commission twice, Clarendale of Clayton has been redesigned. In this new iteration of the design, the top two floors of the proposed building now sit back from the corner of Hanley and Clayton road. The design also appears to be more aligned with the nearby "The Boulevard" development. Whether or not that is a good thing is to be decided by the city of Clayton and the neighbors. At 178 feet in height, Clarendale blocks the views of the neighboring residential tower, which to them could be more NIMBYism.
The actual facade is to be brick and glass with some stone detailing. Landscaping also looks pretty good when looking at the renderings. The apartment tower has balconies for the residents (since this portion of the project is for independent living people). Down Clayton road to the East, the assisted living building has a courtyard in the center so residents there can still go outside and enjoy life.
In addition to senior living space, Clarendale will offer a small retail space on Hanley for something like a coffee shop or small cafe. The developer is The Ryan Companies. They currently have the site, which was a Schnucks grocery store. Clarendale should be open by the Spring of 2020. Below, you can find additional renderings and a fly around video. The new design goes before the planning commission on July 16th.
Gallery of Additional Renderings
Fly Around Video
By. Chris Stritzel
Today, a groundbreaking ceremony was held for the Live! By Loews Hotel at Ballpark Village. It was attended by dignitaries from the Cardinals, Cordish Companies, Loews & Co and the City of St. Louis. The event, which took place on the Busch 2 Infield, marked the official start of structural construction on the hotel building. While the actual groundbreaking for the full Phase 2 development was held back in December 2017, they wanted to hold another for this building. Along with the groundbreaking, we got some new Renderings of the hotel building itself which includes a new view down Clark and interior images.
The whole hotel has the vibe of the “gashouse gang” lounge in the current Phase 1 Building. The dark colors really blend well with simple light colored hotel rooms on the upper floors. Each hotel room has a outline of Busch Stadium 2 along with premium materials and views (except for the western view. That view shows the Busch West Garage). Also included in the new Loews Hotel is a Bourbon Bar where guests can taste many kinds and varieties of bourbon from all over. On Clark Street, the Gashouse Gang Restaurant will be a Cardinal themed restaurant. On floor 2, the terrace lounge will provide beautiful views of Downtown and allow guests to take in the atmosphere of the Ballpark Village area on game days.
Also included is a lobby level great room which will provide drinks and a meeting place for people. It will be one of the first things you see when you enter the hotel.
The hotel is eight floors tall and has 216 four-star hotel rooms. It should be open by February 2020. That is just in time for the 2020 baseball season. Loews hotels and company is paying for the $60 million project. HKS is the architecture firm. This is part of the fees to development. All foundations have been laid out ready to be excavated so the main structure can be built. This groundbreaking event was sort of pointless to have but it’s always nice to have another groundbreaking event.
Loews Hotel is part of the $260 million ballpark Village phase 2 expansion. This includes the 29th floor luxury condo building, One Cardinal Way. And a 10 floor office building, the Pennant Building. There’ll also be a three floor building in between all of them which will be home to One Life Fitness and a grocery store. All three cranes are up on site for this project, which is the largest in the city. To see additional renderings of the building, please view the gallery below. Each photo has a caption to tell you what you were looking at.
Project Update Page
By. Chris Stritzel
After just four years in business in St. Louis, Howl at The Moon will close its location at Ballpark Village. STLtoday and others have learned that “Shark Bar”, a Cordish Concept, will open in the space. There is currently one other location in Kansas City’s Power and Light District. The bar is more of a tropical themed one with drinks sounding like things you find in a bar along the gulf coast. According to Shark Bar’s Page on the Kansas City Power and Light District’s website, they describe themselves as…
“Retro Surf... Retro Dance... Retro Cool...The home of the endless summer brings you the endless party. From frosty cool rum runners and piña coladas to Shark Bar's signature beach pail punch, pick your libation to unwind and hit the beach. The beach heats up with the greatest retro dance music this side of the North Shore. Kick back on the deck and hit the surf; it's the perfect party”.
Whether or not it does good here is anyone’s guess but the second phase of the project could only help it. With the Loews Hotel and One Cardinal Way, some people may just want to go a tropical bar sometimes. I guess we will have to wait and see how something like that does here in St. Louis. It should open later this year after a renovation of the space.
By. Chris Stritzel
I have been a critic about our MetroLink system ever since I was younger. It just doesn't seem like it fits the needs of everyone as it only serves a small portion of the area. The portion it serves is a small strip along the Central corridor with small branches leading into North and South St. Louis County. Two lines just isn't enough. What about everyone living in the City in portions not served by the train? Well that appears to eb why the Northside-Southside line is being considered as the next major expansion of the MetroLink system. For $667 million, you get a 8.2 Mile System with 16 stations running North and South and connecting the city's recently revitalized neighborhoods with ones that need some help.
The new Northside-Southside line, which I will call the "Orange Line" will run primarily on Natural Bridge, Florissant Avenue, Delmar, 9th and 10th, 14th, Chouteau and Jefferson. Along this route lies several areas of local interest to residents and tourists. You have Cherokee Street, Lafayette Square, Downtown and Old North St. Louis. At the Civic Center Station in downtown, you can hop on to either the Red or Blue lines to take you to other destinations like CWE, Grand Center, Forest Park, Clayton, the Airport and the Metro East. The Orange Line is really one that can finally link the area together, even though it is a small line. The small line has tons of potential. Along the Orange Line, neighborhoods like Hyde Park, Old North St. Louis and Gravois Park are all ready to explode and the addition of light rail will surely speed up the process to add density in these neighborhoods. It could also help increase the amount of historic rehabs coming out of these neighborhoods. Even famous local businesses (Crown Candy, Cherokee Businesses) will benefit from this line.
While the Orange Line is substantially shorter than the original plan (which would've started at Stratford and ended at Bella Villa), it is more financially viable and addresses the "community investment strategies, serve area neighborhoods and residents and provide pedestrian access to the NGA West Campus". The price tag of $667 Million is far more viable than the original $1.5 Billion plan. It is also a good starter route. From here, more branches can be added onto at later times depending on how well this route does. Whether or not this gets built is still up in the air as federal transit money will need to be allocated for this and more thorough planning needs to take place (environmental effects and development study).
As for the NGA Alternative route (which is nearly 8 miles and has 16 stations), it could be used as part of a deal to get federal funding by aligning the transit line next to a federal agency. In this process, it would bypass the neighborhoods of Old North and Hyde Park which are making a steady comeback. That is why I prefer the Florissant line (as seen in the map below denoted in red). But fi the NGA Alternative of the Orange Line is selected, so be it, but then Metro should look at the possibility and feasibility of adding a BRT (Bus Rapid Transit) route to connect Old North and Hyde Park with the greater light rail network.
This goes before the East-West Gateway Council of Governments Board on August 29th.
Partial funding for the Orange Line passed in the April 2017 Municipal Election by the name of Prop 1. Federal Funding will still be required to pay fort he project. At this rate, we could see the line open in 2027 at the earliest (which is only 9 years).
By. Chris Stritzel
After the Facebook post caused on uproar and outpouring of hopes to get the building at 417 East Missouri Avenue in East St. Louis redeveloped, it now appears to be moving closer and closer to reality. I should know, I am on the team to see it become a reality. Things have been going on behind the scenes such as...
Most of these points have been completed but there still are some that need to be completed…
And while the process is still chugging along, it Is looking better and better everyday. Scottie Porter, of Historic Restorations Inc based in Fayette Alabama, is the primary developer on this project. I am a partner in all of this and am exited to be that.
When we sent out the RFP (Request for Proposals) on the exterior restoration portion of the project to 5 architecture firms, only two responded. Both Trivers and Killeen Studio significant interest in being part of this project, but only Studio Killeen is moving forward at this point. The deadline for the presentation of these plans is August 1st. All 5 firms we researched, had experience in historic restoration. Whether it be old houses or large buildings. We also wanted to give the firms a challenge by focusing solely on the façade of the Spivey first before working on the inside. In case you didn't know, the exterior of the building is crumbling and needs some attention ASAP which is why we only sent out the RFP for the façade restoration at this point. An interior design RFP will be sent out at a later date in private.
Which ever if the firms has the lowest cost, quality design will be selected as the architecture firm for façade restoration. The restoration of the façade would be to...
Scottie and I have full faith in these architecture firms, and hopefully the others if they respond soon, to deliver something remarkable that will truly be a beacon of East St. Louis. We will review over the plans and have a decision by the end of August (or potentially before) on who the architecture firm will be. At that time, applications for tax credits and TIFs will begin.
If the building is acquired by us after having meetings and what not, we will then move to set up temporary measures around the building to protect the public of falling debris. This part also includes removing the loosest pieces from the building and storing them till the restoration of the façade begins. This phase would also include the sealing of the building from intruders and the installation of a security system. We have a meeting set up with the East St. Louis Planning Commission and are working on one with the St. Clair County Economic Development Board (which is determined by the Planning Commission Meeting). The date of that meeting is to remain a secret at this point in time but it is in July.
One Last Thing...
In order for the new St. Louis Story to truly take place, we must work to preserve our buildings on both sides of the River. It strengthens our community while promoting our history. Follow the Spivey Building on Twitter and Facebook and, if you would like fill out the form below to state your support for the project! This is a community empowerment project after all!