Welcome (Back) to St. Louis Patina

After years of indecision, I have finally made the leap to a full-fledged site, leaving behind my old blog.  As the weeks unfold, I will upgrade and improve this site to bring you the architectural legacy of St. Louis: what we’ve done right, what we’re doing right and wrong now, and how we can make the built environment in our city improve the quality of life in the centuries to come.  Rome (and St. Louis) weren’t built in a day, but our city has given us ample clues on how to continue our rich heritage of building some of the best edifices in the world.

Stately Homes, East St. Louis

By no means is the entire city of East St. Louis a wasteland, and in fact many streets still retain their original houses.

They could easily be in Tower Grove South or any number of neighborhoods in St. Louis.

Rather interestingly, these two houses with their distinctive turrets are the same design, but one has brick and the other tan stone.

While many houses were originally built of wood in the city, these houses are brick or stone, and are still surviving the ravages of time.

Also, I will be presenting about the exciting future of St. Louis Patina at 7:00 PM at the Contemporary Art Museum on July 12th, in conjunction with PechaKucha St. Louis. I hope to see you there.

Ainad Temple, East St. Louis

Long known as one of the last surviving institutions from the “old” East St. Louis, the Ainad Temple is a fascinating mix of brick and Moorish Revival decorative elements.

Inspired by buildings such as the Alhambra in Granada, Spain, it reflects an architectural frame of mind that was willing to borrow from any style that suited architects and their clients.

There was talk of moving two years ago, but I hope that they’ve changed their minds and chosen to stay.

Also, I will be presenting about the exciting future of St. Louis Patina at 7:00 PM at the Contemporary Art Museum on July 12th, in conjunction with PechaKucha St. Louis. I hope to see you there.

Some More Downtown East St. Louis

I’m always amazed by some of the beautiful storefronts on Collinsville Avenue, many featuring terracotta decorative elements that are still in good condition after decades of neglect.

Sadly, the back sides of many of the most elegant buildings in downtown are beginning to fail, and are slowing falling down into piles of concrete and rebar.

Grass lots are replacing what were once businesses, leaving the long sides of building exposed to view.

This house looks like it caught on fire at some point; despite the vinyl siding, I suspect this house is much older.

Also, I will be presenting about the exciting future of St. Louis Patina at 7:00 PM at the Contemporary Art Museum on July 12th, in conjunction with PechaKucha St. Louis. I hope to see you there.