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Author: NextSTL

Demo Alert: Wabash Signal Tower

I’ve passed the Wabash signal tower on Sarah on Metrolink many times and figured it would make a cute cafe, donut shop, pub, who knows, once the area came to life. Sadly we will never know. As part of the new station under construction a block away, it is being razed. Given there is already room for a third track, it’s a mystery to me why it’s going. This is the kind of fine-grained development that creates place desperately needed in the suburban-office-park-that-happens-to-be-on-an-orthoganol-grid rising around it. Perhaps tearing down the city will work this time. About Richard Bose A...

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Everly in the Loop Photo Tour

Move-ins commenced August 15 at the Everly in the Loop, a partnership between Clayco, CRG, and Koman Group, while workers put the finishing touches on the 14-story apartment building. It’ beings marketed to students, being leased by the bedroom, each with its own bathroom, and amenities and services geared towards them. Background The apartments, with a total of 428 bedrooms, are 80% leased. The building meets the government-mandated one space per dwelling unit regulation. So far lessees have brought about 85 cars. There are also 100 spaces for bicycles. Unfortunately I couldn’t get a picture of them. The sidewalk...

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Failure of Fragmentation: Sales Tax Hike for SLMPD

On Friday the St. Louis Board of Alderman gave first passage 20-4 to a bill to place a 0.5% sales tax increase on the November ballot. It would raise about $23M in revenue and is meant to stem compensation competition from St. Louis County and its 50+ police departments since the passage of the same tax in April. If passed, the sales tax at a restaurant in the Delmar Loop would be 13.3%. Once again we see how fragmentation and spread-out auto-oriented development patterns are leading to insolvency, adding pressure to raise taxes at every opportunity. What happens when...

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Failure of Fragmentation: Aug 8 Tax Hikes On St. Louis County Ballot

Another election is coming up (a special one at that) and that means more tax increases on the ballot to prop up fragmentation in St. Louis County. The April 2016, August 2016, November 2016, and April 2017 ballots included several tax increases and bond issues. The next ballot looks much the same. Fragmentation and low-productivity auto-oriented development patterns are synergizing in the St. Louis area, driving up the per capita cost of government services, transportation, infrastructure, and utilities. Despite $100Ms in opportunity costs and a soft tax base under our current approach, municipal leaders are thinking inside the box...

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What Should Be: Delmar and SKinker

The Ferris wheel idea is dead. So What should be at Delmar and Skinker? Another auto-oriented fast-food joint a la Taco John’s? A parking lot? A traditional building? {H3 Studio} The Skinker DeBaliviere Neighborhood Plan calls for a mixed-use building much like that adorns the rest of the Delmar Loop. The proposed form-based code in the TOD Plan for the Delmar Loop and Forest Park DeBaliviere Metrolink Stations placed the parcel in the Boulevard Type 2 category, with heights of 3-12 stories and 40 to 130 feet. The FBC would set no parking minimum. {The lot is about as...

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