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Old 01-07-2011, 10:49 AM
 
Location: Kirkwood
2,735 posts, read 1,574,341 times
Reputation: 1474

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You know what would really be interesting to see is a New Town like community, but not in the cornfields in a floodplain in St. Charles County, but in some of the brown-fields of North St. Louis.

Seriously, there is so much unused ground now in North St. Louis.

Maybe that's what that developer McKee was trying to accomplish, I don't really know.
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Old 01-07-2011, 10:54 AM
 
Location: Kansas City, MO
403 posts, read 511,006 times
Reputation: 209
Oh boy, New Town. So much to say. I'll just say this. It would have been better if it weren't isolated. If it were near a spot where people already congregate and enjoy they might be adding a whole lot more to it by now.
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Old 01-07-2011, 10:55 AM
 
Location: Volker, Kansas City, MO
12,062 posts, read 19,070,831 times
Reputation: 3628
Quote:
Originally Posted by MUTGR View Post
You know what would really be interesting to see is a New Town like community, but not in the cornfields in a floodplain in St. Charles County, but in some of the brown-fields of North St. Louis.

Seriously, there is so much unused ground now in North St. Louis.

Maybe that's what that developer McKee was trying to accomplish, I don't really know.
That's exactly what this article is about -- New Urbanism. Creating not just subdivisions and strip malls, but a neighborhood with a vibrant street life, walkability, and a sense of renewed community. With TOD, there would be express buses that head to job centers, cultural amenities, and sporting events.

McKee wants to make money, I don't doubt for a second that's his main goal, but the smartest way to do that is to absolutely create new urbanism projects on the north side.

I would far prefer, whenever possible, to preserve historic architecture, but in some areas that's probably not very realistic. Many of the homes are in such poor condition and it would cost so much to rehab them, that the working class people for whom this area would hold the most appeal wouldn't be able to afford them.

It remains to be seen if McKee actually knows what he's doing or if he's in way over his head. He certainly could use a PR lesson or two.
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Old 01-07-2011, 11:25 AM
 
Location: Kirkwood
2,735 posts, read 1,574,341 times
Reputation: 1474
Quote:
Originally Posted by aragx6 View Post
That's exactly what this article is about -- New Urbanism. Creating not just subdivisions and strip malls, but a neighborhood with a vibrant street life, walkability, and a sense of renewed community. With TOD, there would be express buses that head to job centers, cultural amenities, and sporting events.

McKee wants to make money, I don't doubt for a second that's his main goal, but the smartest way to do that is to absolutely create new urbanism projects on the north side.

I would far prefer, whenever possible, to preserve historic architecture, but in some areas that's probably not very realistic. Many of the homes are in such poor condition and it would cost so much to rehab them, that the working class people for whom this area would hold the most appeal wouldn't be able to afford them.

It remains to be seen if McKee actually knows what he's doing or if he's in way over his head. He certainly could use a PR lesson or two.
I agree with you about preserving historic architecture, but so many blocks of space are just gone. They're either completely gone or partially gone. That's why I'd like to see a New Town type development fill in those areas. That would be exciting, with its own stores, etc. I doubt it is commercially viable. Who knows.
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Old 01-07-2011, 11:36 AM
 
Location: Volker, Kansas City, MO
12,062 posts, read 19,070,831 times
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^I definitely agree that North City is a tough sell. I talk about the importance of stigma all the time, and North City has a helluva lot to overcome. That's honestly why I think McKee might be a little nutty.

But there are certainly places in underdeveloped North County where I think this could absolutely work. There's an awful lot of 20-somethings who grew up in Ferguson, Florissant, Hazelwood etc. who might well dig something like this.
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Old 01-07-2011, 11:41 AM
 
Location: Clayton, MO
1,518 posts, read 2,025,683 times
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McKee wouldn't need to tear down much. Nearly all of those structures in NStL can be saved and reused in the new community.
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Old 01-07-2011, 01:08 PM
 
Location: Kirkwood
2,735 posts, read 1,574,341 times
Reputation: 1474
Quote:
Originally Posted by RichMonk View Post
Oh boy, New Town. So much to say. I'll just say this. It would have been better if it weren't isolated. If it were near a spot where people already congregate and enjoy they might be adding a whole lot more to it by now.
We've kicked around NewTown in other threads. I agree with you.
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Old 01-26-2011, 03:00 AM
 
Location: Rural area an hour from St. Louis
53 posts, read 37,196 times
Reputation: 187
Default We need more public transportation

Something I see as necessary for any kind of healthy growth, whether urban or suburban, is better public transportation. Now mind you, I live out in the sticks; partly because I cannot stand the sounds that go with the city due to my disability and partly because we can't afford to live in the city unless we live in the projects.

We have 4.2 acres of land, a newer mobile home and 2 outbuildings and for this we are paying less than $75K. We have a garden in the summer and have chickens for eggs and the occasional meal if our rooster gets too mean. The biggest problem here is getting from point A to point B without a car. I'd love to go into town, get on a train, and ride into the city. We did it in Europe all the time. Why do the rails sit so silently?

There is so much in this area that could be super-easily accessed via rail - St. Louis, Indianapolis, Kansas City, Columbia, Springfield, even New Orleans - but there aren't trains to ride. I've often wondered why we isolate ourselves so deliberately. If there were trains going in and out of the city, people could go into town to work or shop, and people could come out here to work or shop, all without increasing the burden on our already-stressed roadways and without sucking up more of our precious and increasingly expensive fossil fuels.

Many, if not most, of America's rural communities are sadly lacking when it comes to access to up-to-date medical care and convenient shopping, and not all of us live here by choice. However, even if we do, it would be awesome to be able to drive the 5 miles to town, park the car and hop on a train to go to the doctor's office or to enjoy a show at the Fox or to spend some time and money in the city.

Instead of pouring millions of dollars into a road that is going to have to be repaired again in a few years, a road that is basically a portable parking lot during rush hour and a place to take your life into your hands because of texting drivers and road rage, why not put some of that money into smart rail programs? Until we centralize transportation, we're going to stay a fractured state. I've been in places where the rail system was far superior to our nonexistent one, and there is a lot to be said for even just a few trips a day into and out of the city. I'd far rather ride a train than drive my car. It's less stressful and allows me to relax and enjoy the view instead of worrying about drivers weaving in and out of traffic going 80 miles an hour and flipping people off if they don't get out of the way fast enough.

I'd like to be able to get into town and find a kosher deli. Driving there is out of the question due to my disability but that doesn't mean I wouldn't enjoy the trip.

OCL
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:30 AM
 
Location: Volker, Kansas City, MO
12,062 posts, read 19,070,831 times
Reputation: 3628
Quote:
Originally Posted by OzarkChickenLover View Post
Instead of pouring millions of dollars into a road that is going to have to be repaired again in a few years, a road that is basically a portable parking lot during rush hour and a place to take your life into your hands because of texting drivers and road rage, why not put some of that money into smart rail programs? Until we centralize transportation, we're going to stay a fractured state.


Though to be fair, a good number of St. Louisans get this. Public transit in St. Louis is a heckuva lot better than in other, similarly sized, cities.
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Old 01-26-2011, 08:58 AM
 
Location: St. Ann, MO
2,916 posts, read 3,117,901 times
Reputation: 1492
In order to really improve public transportation it has to be near the population centers (when speaking of the cities) the problem is that the population of St. Louis is so spread out in all directions that ensuring everyone is close to a station is a little bit difficult, but it's getting better. If i were attempting to design a system, i'd probably work with something that resembles the interstate system in St. Louis, run a train system around the metro along the I-270 corridor, along with a major going South from I-170 through brentwood, and curving further south around the city, with a couple more smaller inner lines going into and out of the city from I-70 (airport-ish), I-44, and I-55. It would keep people from having to go through one central station constantly to go to either north or south county, while still giving people access to different parts of town.

As for getting public transportation out of the cities, i think that might be more difficult. While i'm sure there is some need, i'd wonder if the need is great enough to warrant passenger rail service to the smaller communities. To those in the cities, people often say high speed rail would be great going North to Chicago, West to Kansas City, South towards Dallas, etc....But they also say that if you could get the small stops out of the way the trip would be more enjoyable and faster.

In all honesty, you'd probably have more rail options had the airplane not been invented...specifically the jet. With the size and expanse of the country, cheap air travel has really made the rail system somewhat obsolete around this country, and it's pretty sad to see.
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