Save the 1900 Block on Olive Street!

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St. Louis used to be a very dense city, and each block in downtown was packed to the gills with wall-to-wall historic buildings. Over the past few decades, we have lost so much of that historic fabric to urban decay; the vast majority of which we turned into surface parking lots. St. Louis declined, and downtown emptied out. We found out that all these demolitions and parking expansions didn't make downtown a better place, nor did it make it attractive. Turns out that ripping down destinations downtown to make it more convenient for people to go there, doesn't make them want to go there!

Recently, demolition permits were issued for a group of historic buildings on the 1900 Block of Olive Street. We haven't heard any word of redevelopment or new construction for this block, which leads us to assume it will be replaced with surface parking for the new MLS stadium being build to the southwest. This is unacceptable!

There is already an abundance of cheap parking and vacant lots in Downtown West. If the developer wishes to redevelop the block, there's already plenty of underutilized parking space elsewhere on that block to work with. If they're looking to rip it down for parking, there's absolutely no reason that we need any more parking than we already have.

This petition is targeted at St. Louis City's Preservation Review Board. Since this block is located in a Preservation Review District, the PRB has the power to review its demolition. The PRB's webpage states that "Preservation Review Districts are established by ordinance for areas of the City where the Board of Aldermen finds that, considering the impact upon a neighborhood and upon the City as a whole, demolition review is in the public interest." Preserving our city's historic urban fabric, of which there isn't much left, is absolutely in our public interest! If the PRB for some reason lacks the power to stop these demos, we're calling upon Mayor Lyda Krewson and the Board of Aldermen to use whatever tools and connections they have at their disposal to stop this demolition on their end. 

We've lost more than enough of our historic downtown fabric to the car, to appeal to people that may not even live in the city. Enough is enough! Keep these buildings standing for a redevelopment opportunity where they can be given new life. Decades of replacing historic structures with parking has been an abject failure-it's time we bring an end to the decades of waste, and show that we treasure our downtown's and our city's history.