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Demo Alert: 4534-56 Manchester - NextSTL

Demo Alert: 4534-56 Manchester - NextSTL

itsmeinthelou

While I fully support historic preservation and repurposing of significant structures whenever possible, I also fully support the demos of these buildings. They're eyesores and their continued deterioration has kept The Grove from fully realizing its potential for years.


therealsteelydan

Do you consider the houses in Lafayette Square or Soulard to be "significant"?


ads7w6

Have they announced a project for the site that is going to help the Grove realize its potential? Or you just want the buildings demolished? The current owner has owned the properties for 3-6 years and hasn't done anything to stop the deterioration. I always find it funny when someone says they "support historic preservation" then goes on to use the fact that the owner of a property's lack of maintenance is a good enough reason to knock down the building. I'm not necessarily saying I am against demolition but I am definitely against it if there is not an actionable plan that will improve the parcels. These buildings are certainly in rough shape, but there's a lot of examples of buildings in similar states being brought back to productive use in the city.


nangtoi

It sounded like there isn't a public plan yet according to the article. I hope this means that the western edge of the Grove is going to be getting some more attention soon.


itsmeinthelou

​ No, I'm not for demolition just for the sake of demolition and I never stated that in my comment. Nor did I state that the "property's lack of maintenance is a good enough reason to knock down the building". So, please don't put words in my post or thoughts in my head. I'm quite capable of writing and thinking for myself without your assistance. Also, historic preservation doesn't mean keeping every old structure just because it's old. As noted in the other comment, the western side of the Grove needs attention. Having ownership that just sits on a property, without proper maintenance, is not giving it attention. Of course I'd much rather see an actionable plan for the site than just another vacant lot from demo'ed buildings. Who wouldn't want to see this? It's my understanding there is a developer who has a plan for the site, however, they're not ready to go public yet.


RBB_STL

These buildings, although crumbling, are absolutely architecturally significant and contribute to the Manchester streetscape. They are not irreplaceable but should be protected from simple demolition. Far too many times in this city developers say they need to demolish a building so they can build something new, but once the old building is gone they walk away. For example, see what happened to the oldest building in Downtown St. Louis recently - [the Noonian-Kocian Art Company](https://nextstl.com/2013/05/when-the-art-world-came-to-st-louis-the-noonan-kocian-art-company-at-tenth-locust/) at 10th & Locust which was [supposed to be replaced by five townhomes](https://nextstl.com/2017/05/five-townhomes-proposed-10th-locust-downtown-st-louis/) but instead has become [The DUK Park](https://goo.gl/maps/T7iHvYbhuzDnLTS88), AKA a grass lot. We also have no idea \*what\* is replacing those buildings on Manchester yet - for all we know they could be intending to build another QuikTrip (exaggerated for effect - I know that's unlikely coming from Grove Properties). Any demolition approved for a developer should be contingent on approval of the replacement plan (to ensure the replacement is consistent with the environment and better than what it replaces) \*and\* proof that the replacement project is fully funded.


itsmeinthelou

Just because we don't yet know what's intended for the site doesn't mean that whatever is coming isn't already fully funded and consistent with the environment.


RBB_STL

You're right, that may well be. All I'm saying is that verification of funding should be a condition of the issuance any demo permit to someone with a redevelopment plan.


itsmeinthelou

I agree with that 100%. This is the best thing for the City.


ads7w6

It is what you wrote. You said you support these properties' demolition and cited them being "eyesores" and continued "deterioration" holding back the Grove as the reason. Their current owner has not been maintaining them which is keeping them as eyesores and allowing them to deteriorate. If what you meant was something else then you should have written something else. Those were the only reasons you cited. Your comment about attention just goes back to my point about people who claim to be for historic preservation then using an owner's lack of maintenance as the justification to then support a demolition request. That is exactly how the Archdiocese got support to knock down the San Luis for a parking lot and SLU got it to knock down the last Pevely building for a grass field. I've got no say in this so it doesn't matter but I'm not for knocking down 100+ year old buildings just because I've heard rumors of some "not public" plan for the site.


itsmeinthelou

For someone who claims it doesn't matter and states they have "no say", you're certainly writing a lot.