By. Chris Stritzel
2017 brought the St. Louis region surprises galore whether it be new construction or historic restoration and preservation. The list is in order of least (9) to most (1) significant projects announces this year or got under way. Let’s get started immediately.
9. Forsyth Pointe
The Forsyth Pointe office building project was announced in early 2017 and is put at the top of this list for a reason, it adds more office space to Clayton. While many say that this is a good thing, I beg to differ. Clayton is in a building boom currently with the massive Centene project which is going to bring hundreds of thousands square feet of Class A office space to Downtown Clayton. This small building though is pushing the limit of office space that Clayton needs. The project may even put Clayton into the overbuilt category in terms of office space. And while it is good to have a surplus of office space, to much is a problem and can cause problems down the road.
Those problems combined with both companies abandoning their suburban office space for other areas and at home positions could hurt the office space category as a whole. Downtown St. Louis currently has a massive 1.2 Million Square foot office building abandoned, we don't want to add to the growing number of square feet of office space that is abandoned or struggling to get tenants. That would just make our delicate national image even more fragile. Basically, we shouldn't build more office space unless tenants are already lined up and worries are squashed, this one I do not see having any of these as the project has been quiet since March when the last document was sent to the City of Clayton.
8. AC Hotel Central West End
While a new hotel for Central West End is good, it is also a bummer in many ways which basically solidifies it spot at number 9 on this list. There are three pros to this project. 1. It adds density to a already highly dense neighborhood. 2. It brings a new hotel brand to St. Louis. 3. It will bring more people to Central West End to patronize their businesses in the most walkable neighborhood in the City. While those three things may make it sound like a big win for St. Louis, it is the little things that count in regards to a hotel project of this manner.
There are 5 cons with the project which really reduce the favorability of this project in my opinion those are...
1. Views- The hotel will not have any good views besides the back portions of the Chasse Park Plaza, York House and Maryland Plaza not to mention two large parking garages on wither side of the hotel.
2. It is located on York avenue, which Is a pain in the ass to get to from Lindell and is basically an alley with no shops or things to make you feel good about waking back to the hotel late at night.
3. The design is not to be desired as it has no special features that pother hotels have. No rooftop bar. No retail. Plain materials and over all blah design.
4. Parking- Parking for hotel guests will be hard as the Chase Garage will most likely not allow any guests to park there and, if guests are stuck parking at the Argyle Garage, then you have to walk through a creepy garage across the alley and into your hotel.
5. Nightly prices- Most likely are going to be high because of location (but not worth it because of thee above listed things).
Even thought his project was moved forward by the Preservation Board on 12/18 with the hopes that the architect and developer add more brick to the faced, it is not a very good project over all but fills the void for hotel rooms in Central West End.
7. 6300 Clayton Avenue
The first new significant development in Dogtown in years, 6300 Clayton Avenue (Hibernia) will be a true game changer for Dogtown as a whole. Announced back in March, the 5 floor project will add several residents to Dogtown as well as a new retail amenity, a grocery store. That store is supposed to be a Fields Foods market. The only other one in the City is in Lafayette Square off of Lafayette near Truman parkway. A big plus of this project is the underground parking Garage for residents. Dome may be wondering, why is it as number 8 on this list? Well the answer is simple, design.
The design is very close to both Cortona and Encore at Forest Park in the Highlands development. The same types of design get boring after a while especially in such close proximity to one another. That is why this development is so high up on this list. Cookie cutter designs get boring after a while and just because the colors or materials used changed doesn't always mean that it will be unique. However, I do believe Dogtown needs something like this for it to play a key role in changing our path in the 2020 census. The more new apartments the better especially since it is close to both Washington University and the Forest Park Community College.
According to Scott Ogilivie, the Alderman for the Ward that this is in (Ward 24), the project should break ground in late January 2018 as developers have been working to get financing in place, contractors and more lined up to make construction as smooth as possible. If all goes according to plan, the development should open up sometime in mid to late 2019.
6. Shaw Park Apartments
Announced around the same time as the Forsyth Pointe project, this 22 (formerly 24) story apartment project. The project would replace a long vacant lot where proposals have come and gone. Most notably though, this would be the third major Clayton Residential project to happen since 2015, the other two are 212 and Ceylon. The tower would over look Shaw Park and add to the street wall facing Shaw Park. However, this project does have some things that do not put it into the top 5 on this list. Those issues are...
1. Height reduction- A tower floor height reduction is odd for a project at such a prime location.
2. a monster parking garage for the project will make some if the units have bad views.
3. Lower floors will be against the Forsyth Pointe project thus making several units worthless.
The should begin in early 2018 though, which is exciting. But those issues I cannot get over and I think they will cost the project dearly in revenue and potential.
5. Jefferson Connector
As far as historic preservation and new construction is concerned, this project addresses both of these and adds more to the Downtown West-Midtown area. The Jefferson Connector Project will be a true connector of Downtown West to Midtown Alley and will help spruce up a current desolate part of Locust Street. The project will
consist of the restoration of the old Mendenhall
Building east of Jefferson and the creation of a entirely new streetscape West of Jefferson. The new streetscape will be made up of a 10 Floor Hotel Building, a parking garage with retail at the base of the garage. Across Locust to the North will be a Shipping Container shopping center. Finally, the old Beaumont telephone building will be restored and turned into office space and apartments.
The mix of new construction and preservation will surely change the perception of Locust and Jefferson as a whole. The intersection is currently blah and this project will surely help with the way it looks. But, this doesn’t make it into the top 5 because of one issue that I cannot get over. That issue is the overall master planning approach. The idea of having shipping containers reused for retail usage may be unique but certainly not a must. We would be better off getting another residential building built on that vacant lot. That with the monstrous AT&T building, this property and strip is just not very valuable. But at least the city will be gaining a new development that will help our city in the long run.
4. Jefferson Arms Building
After being stalled for several years, the Jefferson Arms is finally ready to be brought back to life, this time, by Alterra International. Planned is the restoration of the building with street level retail and second floor office space. That is part of Phase 1. Phase 2 will bring hundreds of Apartments and a AC Hotel to the building. This also represents a pretty sizable chunk of abandoned space in Downtown being brought back to life. There are no major problems to complain about this project besides the two phases. I understand that the project is large and will take time, but by doing it in to phases, you are at risk of economic collapse which could lead to overall cancellation of the second phase. That would greatly reduce the value of the first two floors of the building.
On the flip side, construction on Phase 1 should begin sometime in 2018 and wrap up in 2019.
3. Railway Exchange Building
As the Old Macy's building wraps up its rough year and a half (water line breaking and flooding the building's lower floors, crumbling exterior, removal of the Famous-Barr marquee and awnings falling off), a new plan is starting to finally emerge for the massive block size city building. The Railway Exchange Building may see new life, this time, with Square. Preliminary plans presented give the idea that the developer, Hudson Holdings, is trying to get Square to move their local Headquarters to the building. Featured in the project will be street level retail, office space, residential and a hotel. The plans also include a market Hall within the building with cafes and what not.
It is about time a project comes to fruition to tackle Downtown's largest historic abandoned building. The Railway Exchange Building holds a key piece in our city's fabric, and it is about time that a plan is being made to bring that icon back to life. While details are limited at his time, this project made it to the list as being a surprise for a building that has been deteriorating since 2013s closure of the Macy's store. While no concrete plans have been made, this project will surely make a return In 2081 with more details, so we are looking forward to hearing that news. Until then, the hopes of Square moving into the building are ambitious but doable. A corporate movement to Downtown would change our perception. Who knows, maybe Square is already part of the project.
We will see in 2018.
2. Ballpark Village Groundbreaking
After being announced in October 2016, it finally broke ground but is far larger and more pricey than the original plan announced last October. The new plan is 7 times the size of the first phase and is worth $260 Million. The new plan also fulfills much of the original 2006 vision that both the Cardinals and Cordish companies had. The new plan also brings new brands and things to St. Louis. The biggest new brand is the Live! By Loews Hotel. Loews is a luxury hotel company and the fact that they chose St. Louis, and Ballpark Village for their flagship St. Louis location in particular must be an honor to have. Furthermore, the project welcomes One Life Fitness to St. Louis.
On the Eastern end of the site, a new tower of 330 feet tall and 29 floors will rise and will bring more new residents to the streets of downtown, in particular, the most desolate part of Downtown. Overall, this project will be great fro the City and Downtown as it displaces several blocks of surface parking for new uses that will benefit the City. Now that construction has started, the perception on out city will change as the construction of the tower will be visible from televised Cardinals games. The entire project's construction will be seen from Interstate 64 which gives a even bigger impression for travelers just passing through the city.
Construction should wrap up in 2020 and by then, I wouldn't be surprised to see a Phase 3 announced.
1. 300 South Broadway
Say what you will about the government process of getting this thing approved and ready to go, it is significant and is at number 1 on this list. The tower shows us that there is renewed interested to build new in Downtown St. Louis, and in particular, around the ballpark. This all came about because of what I believe is the Ballpark Village effect. As Ballpark Village begins construction on Phase 2, this project was announced as the developers clearly anticipate this area becoming its own neighborhood by the mid 2020s. Even though a historic building will go away to make way for this tower, it will be a fair trade off as most of the existing structure was altered or added on to in the 1980s.
The 33 floor passed the Preservation Board on December 18th with the idea that the architecture firm, HDA, will incorporate the existing façade into the new building and that the exterior would be covered in at least 75% of glass. These recommendations were over turned the following day as the neighborhood was blighted for this project and vacant lots and buildings near by. Basically, construction should start by July 2018 and will bring yet another major project to Downtown that will change the streetscape by 2020.
This project is my favorite announced this year and we will see what happens with it, but I believe it will happen.
And that is the 2017 Year in Review. I predict that 2018 will being at least 3 new high-rise/skyscraper proposals for St. Louis and Clayton. I also believe that many projects featured in the STL Projects page will get underway thus starting the regions largest construction boom since the early 2000s.
By. Chris Stritzel
As 2018 is creeping up on us, literally only 11 days away, the Tower Grove neighborhoods (South and East) are preparing to see two significant developments rise from the ground. Both will replace eyesore structures and buildings. With a combined investment of over $25 Million into the two neighborhoods, it is likely that this is the beginning of a development boom for the two neighborhoods (and that is a good thing). The Tower Grove neighborhoods are my favorite with historic homes renovated to be new again, they really are unique and these two projects will add to that.
Let us recap what is going to be completed by Early 2019 (and truly benefit the neighborhoods).
Pelican Place (2200 South Grand Boulevard)
At the site of the former YMCA building on Grand will rise a five story, $19 Million apartment building designed by St. Louis based architecture firm HOK. To be built on the Western edge of Tower Grove East near Tower Grove Park and Compton Hill Reservoir Park, the 124 unit apartment building will add to the growing demand for apartments along South Grand, which was recently named one of Americas "Great Streets". We criticized the design back when it was first unveiled last November, but the newer design looks better. Larger windows and brick make the building better to look at.
This project will consist of middle tier luxury apartment units that range in price from $700-$800 for a studio apartment to over $1800 for two bedroom units. While that seems like a good deal, it seems a bit much for the building. But I guess being on South Grand and near two parks ups the price a bit. Also, a swimming pool, fitness center, balconies and on site parking will be accessible for residents which also ups the price. We are most likely to see this project begin in Early 2018 and wrap up in the second quarter of 2019.
The developer is ALTUS properties based in Clayton. The city recently approved of a 10 year tax abatement for the property. Next door, at the corner of Shenandoah and Grand, the Pelican Building is undergoing a renovation to become a Dominos pizza. That should be done by mid 2018. This will also lead to closure of the Dominos near Grand and Arsenal. Furthermore, the new structure will include no retail spaces along Grand, that is a shame in my opinion.
MOFO Apartments (3172 Morgan Ford Road)
Announced earlier this year, the MOFO apartment project will replace an eyesore of a Carwash with a modern apartment building designed by JEMA architects. With 24 units, the building will clearly add to the population of Tower Grove South and add density to the neighborhood. Included in the project is 6000 square feet of retail space. No tenants have been announced for this project as of yet. The neighborhood of Tower Grove South, especially around Morgan Ford is highly walkable. Down the street, you have Tower Grove Park, a grocery store and a bike shop. The rest of the way down to Utah, there are restaurants and bars.
The car wash was demolished on Monday, December 18th and site cleanup is on going. A building permit was issued for the site. Included in the project is covered parking on the Connecticut street side as well as private balconies which will allow residents to take in the new sights and sounds of the trendy neighborhood around them. There is no word yet on the rents that the apartments will go for, but we are expecting somewhere in the $600-$800 range per month. There was a tax abatement approved for the property (and it was one that brought much controversy within the Board of Aldermen).
Construction on this 3 story project should wrap up in very late 2018 or very early 2019. So basically, December 2018 or no alter than February 2019. The cost is estimated by us at around $9 Million, which is a hefty price considering the building's small and compact design. One downside of this project is the neighboring 7-11. I expect a development be announced for that lot as well. Hopefully one is announced soon so perspective residents do not have to look at a crap convenience store.
By. Chris Stritzel
Today, the Preservation Board passed the preliminary plans for the demolition and construction of a new tower at 300 South Broadway. The decision comes as a win for many in favor of seeing new Downtown Construction, but a loss for those who would’ve loved to see the Historic 1890 building stay in place. The building was designed by architect Issac Taylor (he designed such structures as the old Municipal Courts building on Market Street). However the Preservation Board put forth a motion to incorporate the 1890s facade into the new building as well as making the building 75% glass. They also want a construction permit applied for for the new tower so that the City is not screwed out of a historic structure.
Basically, the cultural resource office will not full approve of the demolition of the existing structure until a building permit is obtained to build the new structure. Jack Holleran Jr, of HDA (who is designing the tower) Sees this as a huge win for both his company and Downtown in general. It is also not meant to be in direct competition to One Cardinal Way that just began construction catty corner to the site. “It is supposed to include different amenities and views than those found at One Cardinal Way”, a representative from HDA said, “basically, we want to offer something different to those who want to live near Busch Stadium and Downtown but don’t want to live at Ballpark Village”.
The design has been criticized though by both supporters of Downtown development and Preservation Board members. Their ultimate concern, the building looks way to much like 212 in Clayton and they don’t want a “Cookie-cutter” skyscraper trend to happen in the region. However this design makes sense as the developer of this project also developed the 212 Building in Clayton. A co-developer of the project is CA Development our of Chicago. Clearly the plans can change. DowntownSTL Inc. CEO Missy Kelley, whom I assume believes, that another construction crane Downtown is a dream and needs to happen. I agree with her.
In my honest opinion, I think it will look great if done correctly. Plus, the all glass facade facing Busch Stadium (and hopefully surrounding areas) will look really nice and will give the impression that St. Louis is a booming city. That, with the 3 cranes that will be up around Ballpark Village by hopefully June, I think our perception will change to those on Interstate 64/44 and 55 passing through the city. Why? Because they will see those cranes and know that new things are coming. On top of that, once these structures are completed, the area around Busch Stadium will be constantly hopping with people as multiple hotels and residential buildings will be around it which improves our street scape.
The Final vote was 4-3. A narrow victory but not the kind that HDA wanted.
Construction should begin in mid to late Spring next year and construction should rap up in late 2020. Click below to see the project update page for 300 South Broadway. It includes additional renderings.
By Chris Eichhorn
On Thursday, ground broke on the new Ballpark Village “Phase 2” of development. And while this news may initially seem less exciting to you than the origins of Ballpark Village just 4 years ago, this newest development is far more significant for the area.
Ballpark Village Phase 1 does quite a lot of business: that much cannot be contested. However, because most of this business consists of bars, restaurants, and even more bars, these developments do not add a great deal of new business to the area. There already were bars downtown – and in fact, the locus of night life for the city in 2012 was on Washington Avenue, just a half mile away from Ballpark Village. Many of those bars (for example, the former Dubliner on 11th and Washington) are now closed, beaten out by the glitzier, newer competition seen at downtown’s new bar hotspot. There is nothing inherently wrong with this: new businesses open and best their competitors all the time. However, it’s worth noting that this doesn’t represent new business or revenue in any meaningful way. This is often referred to as migrational development, and can be best understood by imagining a small company located on one side of a street moving to other side. Were any new jobs created? Did the street prosper more than it had previously? Not particularly. Similarly, downtown Saint Louis saw the opening of new bars at Ballpark Village Phase 1 and the closure of other bars nearby.
Ballpark Village Phase 2, however, is quite another animal. Instead of a series of bars and snack shops, the Cardinals’ new development project brings office space, a hotel, and a 28 story residential tower: these represent real growth, developments which can legitimately increase revenue for the area and spur further development down the line. Unlike bars and clubs, differing residential developments are not inherently in competition -- often proving the opposite, with more people wanting to move near growing, pre-existing population centers. Ballpark Village Phase 2, in other words, does not simply shift the economic value from one part of downtown to another, as was mostly the case for Phase 1; it grows the pie. That’s significant, and hopefully Saint Louisans appreciate this distinction.
By. Chris Stritzel
This morning, history was made as the St. Louis Cardinals and Cordish Companies broke ground on the second phase of Ballpark Village. The highly anticipated second phase will consist of a 29 floor residential tower, a Office Building and a Live! By Loews Hotel. Also included is a three floor grocery store/Fitness Building. This is a significant development for Downtown St. Louis and is likely to spark other projects in the near vicinity of the stadium. The presentation this morning was all about the project and the success it could bring.
Bill Dewitt the 3rd even stated that this is only the second phase and that there is more to come. The crowd was also fairly large for this event. There were about 400 people in attendance. The very large screen showed us all what the project will look like from many different angles that have never bneen seen before (those are below). Overall, the Cardinals, Cordish Companies and Lyda Krewson hailed this as a key redevelopment piece for Downtown St. Louis.
Furthermore, the full project will be 700,000 square feet. That is 7 times the size of the current phase. Below are the Renderings from the event (that will be updated when better ones come out). Below that is the website for One Cardinal Way. For those who are interested, the waitlist starts today. And beneath that is a fly around shown at the event.
Press Release by the Cardinals
ST. LOUIS, MO (December 14, 2017) – The St. Louis Cardinals and The Cordish Companies broke ground this morning on the $260 million second phase of Ballpark Village. The Cardinals and Cordish were joined by St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson and numerous civic, community, and business leaders to celebrate this exciting milestone. The 700,000 square foot mixed-use expansion project will complete a full build-out of Clark Street, transforming it into one of the most exciting streets in all of professional sports.
“This second phase is more than seven times the scale of the first phase of Ballpark Village, bringing our total investment in new construction downtown to well over $750 million since 2005,” said Bill DeWitt III, President of the St. Louis Cardinals. “By developing new housing, Class A office space, an upscale hotel, and high quality street level retail, we are truly putting the “Village” into Ballpark Village.”
New buildings will be built on both the east and west sides of the existing Phase 1 development. A new street will emerge, running from 8th Street to Broadway, and be called Cardinal Way. On the east end of Cardinal Way will be a 29-story luxury residential tower called One Cardinal Way. On the west end will be the first new construction Class A-Office Building in downtown in over a generation, anchored by PricewaterhouseCoopers, and an upscale convention hotel, Live! By Loews – St. Louis, MO. In addition, a three-story retail pavilion just north of the existing Busch II Infield and Event Plaza will connect everything together. This spectacular glass pavilion will be anchored by the 31,000 square foot Onelife Fitness, a nationally recognized, state-of-the-art health and fitness club.
The first phase of Ballpark Village has played a pivotal role in the revitalization of downtown since opening in 2014, creating more than 1,000 construction jobs and 1,700 new permanent jobs when it opened. The second phase of Ballpark Village stands to create 1,500 construction jobs and more than 1,000 new permanent jobs.
"It is an honor to grow our partnership with the DeWitt family and the St. Louis Cardinals on this $260 million expansion of Ballpark Village,” stated Blake Cordish, Vice President of The Cordish Companies. “Ballpark Village is setting the gold standard for sports-anchored developments in the country and our partnership is proud to play a role in the ongoing revitalization of downtown St. Louis."
Located at the corner of Clark and Broadway, One Cardinal Way will be one of the most luxurious, amenity-rich apartment communities in the country. The 29-story, 297-unit tower will offer unobstructed views directly into Busch Stadium, as well as the Gateway Arch, Mississippi River, and St. Louis skyline. Designed by Hord Coplan Macht (HCM), One Cardinal Way will be designed to meet National Green Building System certification and will feature high-end materials, expansive ceiling heights, state-of-the-art appliances, and parking within the building. The community will feature studio, 1-bedroom, 2-bedroom and penthouse apartment homes. Additionally, the first floor will include 10,000 square feet of restaurant, retail and lifestyle amenity space.
One Cardinal Way will also feature over 25,000 square feet of interior and exterior residential amenity space that rivals that of any luxury apartment or condo building in the United States including:
· An expansive outdoor terrace with direct views into Busch Stadium
· Infinity Edge Pool
· Demonstration Kitchen
· Club room featuring an indoor-outdoor bar and fireplace
· Private Event Entertainment Room
· Fitness Center
· Conference Room
· On-site dry cleaning drop off and pick up
· Building sommelier
· In-building parking
· 24-hour lobby attendant and full suite concierge services
Beginning today, those interested in living at One Cardinal Way can schedule appointments with the Cordish Living management team to digitally view and reserve apartments at www.onecardinalway.com.
Designed jointly by HKS Architects, HCM and Tao & Lee, the new office building will be the first new construction office building built in downtown St. Louis in more than a generation (Metropolitan Square, 1989). The building will be anchored by PwC, one of the largest and most prestigious professional services firms in the world and longtime major employer in downtown St. Louis. The 10-story building will feature street level retail, modern office amenities and more than 500 structured parking spaces.
“This is a tremendous project that will bring hundreds of new residents and over a thousand new jobs to our city,” said Lyda Krewson, Mayor of St. Louis, MO. “I am excited to see a world-class hometown company like the Cardinals and their development partners, The Cordish Companies, expanding their investment in St. Louis and bringing the first new, Class-A office building downtown in nearly three decades.”
Plans were also announced for a new lifestyle tenant to anchor the expansion: Onelife Fitness. The state-of-the-art flagship location will occupy 31,000 square feet in the retail pavilion building directly north of the Busch II Infield and Event Plaza. The expansive space will span two levels and feature a two-story glass façade overlooking incredible views of Ballpark Village and Busch Stadium.
Onelife Fitness is owned and operated by US Fitness Holdings, LLC, one of the largest fitness companies in the United States, with the passion to improve lives by delivering unparalleled service and innovative programming. This high-energy club will feature over $1 million of the newest cardio and strength equipment, large functional turf training areas (indoor and outdoor), the most innovative and fun group fitness classes like BodyPump, Pilates, Yoga, Hot Yoga and Barre classes and industry-leading personal training and small group training like Zone4 high intensity heart-rate based interval training and Explosive Performance athlete training and more.
US Fitness currently owns and operates 47 clubs in Missouri, Georgia, Virginia, Maryland, and the District of Columbia. St. Louis will be the second Midwest location - the first location opened in Kansas City, MO adjacent to Cordish’s One Light Luxury Apartment tower in the Power & Light District.
“We are excited to open Onelife Fitness within one of the most impressive and highest profile sports-anchored, mixed-use projects in the country,” said Kirk Galiani, Co-Chairman, US Fitness Holdings, parent company of Onelife Fitness. “Our successful partnership with The Cordish Companies has allowed us the opportunity to extend our Midwest presence and to now team up with one of the great franchises of all professional sports, the St. Louis Cardinals, to bring something extremely special to Ballpark Village and downtown St. Louis.”
The construction of Ballpark Village’s expansion represents the next step in the Cardinals’ vision for downtown St. Louis that began with the opening of the new $411 million privately-financed Busch Stadium in 2006. Located on 10-acres north of Busch Stadium, Ballpark Village is the first master-planned development designed around a new Major League Ballpark. The dining and entertainment district welcomed over 10 million guests in its first three years.
The expansion project is targeted to begin opening in 2019 and be complete by 2020.
By. Chris Stritzel
Today, we are getting our first look at the multi million dollar Railway Exchange Redevelopment Plan. The owner of the building is Hudson Holdings. In the preliminary Renderings of the project, Square appears to be a tenant and one that would be significant to the Downtown office list. The building is also beautifully restored and looks great. Even though these are preliminary plans for the building, they include details on how the interior will look and function. The Architecture firm is Cannon Design.
The old bridge over Olive Street appears that it will be torn down and replaced with a new one. Or it may be renovated heavily. The bridge appears to function as a commons area for the office portion of the project. There is no word yet whether or not there will be a Hotel or residential portion of the project. Included in this project is a Market Hall. We assume that this will e something similar to a food court or food hall like the one at the City Foundry. It would be quite large and include, what appears to be, 22 stalls for retail and restaurants.
In the office space, a cafe at 7th and Olive as well as a atrium that looks down on the Market Hall. The other 2 floors are office space for what could be square. However, that deal has not been approved yet by Square. The developer hopes to begin this restoration + redevelopment project in August 2018.
There are additional renderings and things below. This story will be updated.
By. Chris Stritzel
After rumors, construction, announcements and waiting, St. Louis can finally taste native Danny Meyer’s interpretation of some of our food. Shake Shack has opened today in Central West End. This is the company’s first location in St. Louis and certainly not the last one. At the prominent corner of Euclid and West Pine, Shake Shack lies in the nearly completed EUCLID Building. This is being developed by the Koman Group.
The 6 floor building should be open sometime in Early 2018, not until then, the first occupiable space in the Building belongs to Shake Shack and the Shack lovers cannot wait. Of course this location will have the signature Shake Shack lines snaking around the location. It is expected considering so many people have been waiting for this day for over a year since it was announced. If you want to try Shake Shack, it is best to download the Shake Shack app (which is available on the Apple App Store or the Google Play Store) and order ahead. That way, you won’t have to wait for the long lines and the headaches of waiting in a line as long as it will be.
We will be down at Shake Shack this afternoon.
UPDATE: The Review/Verdict
I, Chris Stritzel, went down to Shake Shack today around 3P.M. and thought I would do a review of my experience there and give a recommendation on the kind of food that you may like. It begins just below.
I arrived at Shake Shack around 3P.M. on opening day and packed about a half block North on Euclid just west of the Whole Foods Market/Orion building. I walked over to Shake Shack and the line was not to long. Earlier in the day, the line went down to the Boy Scout building on West Pine. There were only about 15 people ahead of me outside and about 20 inside, in all, 35 people +/-. It was cold outside from the strong winds that were blowing. It was already windy enough but being in the recently built up Euclid Concrete Canyon made the wind even worse. It was like a wind tunnel.
As I waited in line, a man, who appeared to be in his 30s, came behind me and we started to talk. He stated that he was from Kansas City and wanted to know what all the hype was about surrounding Shake Shack (F.Y.I. Kansas City doesn't have a Shake Shack yet). He also wanted to know what the line was about. So I told him that lines at Shake Shacks are common especially new ones because hundred, if not thousands of people have the urge to get their hands on a Shake Shack burger or other foods. He was shocked and basically said that it is a cult.
As we continued to talk, two employees came out. One had menus and the other had hot cocoa. That hot cocoa was one of the better that I have had. It was rich and thicker than most other cocoa drinks but had a slight salty flavor to it. I asked one of the employees why it was this way, her response was that there was a dash of sated caramel in it. I was shocked but I liked it. After about 15 minutes outside in the cold wind, I got inside and it was packed. People were all over the place, 20 in front of me waiting to order, 10 waiting for their food and even more sitting down eating. It was interesting. (Video below).
Over the smell of food cooking in the kitchen, I could smell fresh paint which made the experience even better. It was also at this time that I realized the line grew back to the West Pine door on the Northern face of the building (keep in mind that it was now around 3:20P.M. so more people were getting off of work and school and just arriving). After waiting in line for a while, I ordered my food. I ordered a Chicken Shack, Original French Fries and a Coke. It was $13.20. Now some say that is expensive but I differ on that as it is 1. In Central West End which is expensive itself, 2. The City has a high tax rate (and tax was $2 on my order), and 3. Unless you have been to the one in Chicago, this one is reasonable.
My server was a middle aged man who was happy and didn't know how to use the Point of Sale system. But that is to be expected considering it just opened. Within 5 minutes, I got my food and went on my way. I got to my house and ate and it was very good. The Chicken was just the right amount of spicy, juicy and sweet. The fries were crunchy and not salty (which I like), the Coke wasn't anything special, as it was a Coke. I highly recommend getting the Chicken Shack if you happen to visit a Shake Shack as it is good and offers something different from a place known for its burgers and frozen custard.
So what is the verdict based on people, food, employees and atmosphere? I give this place a 4.25 out of 5 stars. The only thing I would like to see improve is employee usage of the computers. At times, the line would be stopped for two or three minutes because the employees did not know how to use the computers correctly. But I believe that they will learn by the first or second week of being in business. Furthermore, it is something that can't be changed, you are crunched for parking in Central West End. Street parking Is a hassle and Whole Foods bans you from parking in their garage, so you literally have to park a couple blocks away, unless you are lucky like me, and walk to Shake Shack. Unless it is not freezing cold or windy out, it would be ok but walking in the cold and wind really just makes this a hassle.
Overall, I think that Shake Shack will expand in St. Louis in the future and that this location will be highly successful once numerous proposed projects get underway around it.
By. Chris Stritzel
Yesterday evening, I posted on Twitter (@BuildingSTL) that the Preservation Board would See a preliminary proposal for 300 South Broadway. Today, those plans were unveiled by St. Louis Business Journal’s Brian Feldt on Twitter. The plans call for the demolition of the 6 floor St. Louis Community College Building at 300 South Broadway (Southeast Corner of Clark and Broadway). In its place will rise a new 33 floor tower consisting of...
- Ground Level Lobby
- Floors 2-8 are Parking
- Floors 9-33 are Apartments
The tower is most likely going to be marketed with views of the Stadium and the Arch. Since the posting of Board Agenda on twitter by myself, people have commented (and with good reason) questioning why an older building will come down to make way for this tower. Many people say that this can be built on the numerous vacant lots around the stadium and preserve this building. An explanation as to why this is not an option is because of owners of Parking Lots are in it to make as much money as possible, especially around the ballpark. Owners of the lots will not sell easily or, in the case of 500 South Broadway and Cupples X, those lots are owned by developers which means that plans could be in the works for either of them. When the time comes, Parking Lots will be bought out and things will be built on them, but at this time, that is not a viable option.
If the Tower is approved by the Preservation Board on December 18th, it will surely go through numerous revisions. Public hearings will most likely be held and should be encouraged if none are planned. Meanwhile, directly to the Northwest on the opposite corner, One Cardinal way is scheduled to break ground on Thursday December 14th at 9:30 A.M. This means that both tower will be competing for residents as both offer views of the Arch or the Stadium. 300 South Broadway and One Cardinal Way have a flaw that may turn residents away. The hulking City block size, Busch Stadium East Garage is an eyesore when looking down on it.
It does not look nice from the top, has a prison vibe to it when viewed from the street and has NO street level retail spaces to offer to the public. It is just something bad to have as your view out of your bedroom or living room in these two towers, especially when you are paying potentially over $1200 a month for a cheaper unit. The garage needs to go. Will it? Most likely not in the next 20 years.
The architecture firm behind this project is HDA Architects who are based in Chesterfield Missouri. They designed the recently completed 212 Project in Clayton and have co-designed the AC Hotel in Central West End. The front of this tower looks trendy and beautifully designed, however, the Northern and Southern Facades, and potentially the Eastern side (I hope not) has the 212 Tower vibe to it. That tower isn't particularly trendy looking but adds a fairly large building for Downtown Clayton, that one is 26 floors and 300 feet tall.
This tower though, as stated earlier will sit at 33 floors tall and, if that is the case, the tower could be over 337 feet tall thus making it the tallest residential building in the City, a title that will be held for a short amount of time by One-Hundred if this tower is approved and built. December 18th, we will learn more about this project and Building St. Louis will be in attendance to here the plan in full, until then, here are the known specs.
Address: 300 South Broadway
Architect: HDA Architects
Floor Count: 33
Number of Units: Unknown
Cost: $100 Million+
Tax Abatement Sought: Unknown
Project Update Page Below
Click the button below to go to the 300 South Broadway Project Update Page.
The Preservation Board document specifies that the building will not exceed 337 feet on height and will not have a all glass façade when seen from the East Side. They also do not really like the height of the tower compared to surrounding structures. The “punched windows” are also not desired. They also will not issue approval for demolition of the existing structure UNLESS a Building Permit was applied for and/or approved. The elevations are featured below.
By. Christopher Eichhorn
Just over three months ago, the Mississippi Valley Trust Building was just another vacant - but beautiful - downtown Saint Louis building. Smaller than others at just 4 stories, it seemed ripe for reinvention at a time when the downtown area was quickly resurrecting. That is a sentiment that Daniel Brian, COO of COVO co-working spaces, shared. A native of Philadelphia now living in San Francisco, Daniel and his team at COVO were looking for places to grow their co-working business, and Saint Louis’s Mississippi Valley Trust building at 401 Pine struck them as ideal. The space’s grand opening is December 7th.
We were looking for places on the tipping point for growth,” Daniel, COO of COVO, told us, which seems a reasonable conjecture given the significant construction ongoing in the downtown area already. They were also looking for places with a dearth of available coworking spaces: Daniel believes that similar cities might have 2-3 times as much comparable space already available in their downtown area. Combined with low real estate costs (Daniel was visibly struck by how cost-efficient Saint Louis real estate is), and this helps explain how a relatively small San Francisco firm chose Saint Louis as only their second location.
The space has come together quite rapidly, and has a unique combination of amenities. Unlike most coworking spaces – which operate almost exclusively as office space for rent – COVO also operates TRUST coffee bar in the front of its space to attract more diverse clientele and to bring the space together. There is space both for walk in customers in addition to a premium space (at two dollars an hour) to both have coffee but also have access to better internet, a printer, and many normal office needs. “The coffee helps our clients to avoid insularity,” Daniel said, and this premise certainly makes sense. Without this central space, the COVO coworking might seem like a hodge podge of disjointed, unaffiliated offices, none of which coordinate or know one another. But with it, COVO feels simultaneously like a place that can provide professional business settings and a community.
For those interested in the available office space, COVO offers a variety of office set ups for two hundred dollars a month, each of which comes with almost all office supplies included (paper cutters and shredders, printers, etc.). The offices vary in size from one to eight employees, and come with access to two shared lounges which additionally help tie the COVO clients together. For those interested in the coffee, TRUST opens at 8AM Monday through Saturday, and converts to a cocktail bar at 4PM (run by former workers of the Thaxton SpeakEasy). And for everyone, we suggest you pop in to check out another beautiful space revived in the Downtown area.
You can contact COVO at 314-455-6313 or visit their site at https://stl.hellocovo.com
By. Chris Stritzel
When I last designed the Building St. Louis logo, it was done for the second anniversary. In the past, the logo was simple lettering or a location around town. But in order to be ready for the future, a new logo had to be created that was better, and more colorful, than the second anniversary one. That is where our new logo comes in. With a fresh and simple look, the new logo represents our region as a whole, and not just the City of St. Louis. Let me explain the key design elements of the logo.
1. Red, Yellow, Blue and White: These colors are on the St. Louis flag. That flag symbolizes our region just as the arch does. Even though we take pride in the arch, the flag is a symbol of our region’s largest municipality. Anywhere you go in the region, you are sure to see the St. Louis flag flying on someone’s porch on featured on a t-shirt. People take pride in St. Louis, so why shouldn’t we?
2. Fleur De Lis: The symbol of St. Louis and our French heritage. It also symbolizes our rebirth as a city and region, that is why it is on our logo officially.
3. A circle in the red: This Circle represents us coming fully around from bad times to great times again. It is basically the life cycle of St. Louis. The white breaking through the red is us breaking through the barrier that was holding us back. That barrier is the Great Recession.
We can’t wait to see what is planned for future of St. Louis, and our logo is here to set our path to report on it.