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Euclid Avenue, Fountain Park

The “Central West End” is an artificial construct! It was all one giant neighborhood, known as the West End (which still exists as a smaller neighborhood to the west), before redlining separated out the part north of Delmar and condemned it by redlining. Lewis Place and Fountain Park possess amazing architecture, and Euclid Avenue has some great examples.

The apartment building above looks similar to one in Fox Park, which I’ve photographed in the past. The house below is favorite among many of my friends, an I understand why; it has a panache that is unique among already spectacular St. Louis architecture.

This area has been the center of the African American middle class, and homeownership has been high.

But the continued divestment and budget deficits plaguing the city have led to people giving up.

It takes great faith to spend money on a house next door to one that is abandoned. What’s on the west side of the street, since I’m only showing the east side? The back side of an anemic strip mall facing Aubert Street, one block east of Kingshighway across another parking lot.

Will these beautiful buildings survive until the government decides to subsidize their revival?

3 Comments

  1. At this point, I think I would settle for government not doing things harmful to these neighborhoods and not hold out on someone (big government, big developer, big business) to come in and save everything.

    • Oh I agree, but I would like the government to get out of the way. It is not “natural market forces” keeping this neighborhood economically depressed, but federal, state and civic policy that prevents lenders from giving home loans to buyers across Delmar from the Central West End. Redlining lives.

      • Agreed. That is a fact that is not talked about enough. The same financing should be available for depressed inner city neighborhoods as is available for the best suburban neighborhoods. The only way right now to restore buildings in a wide swath of the city (and frankly in many other cities around the country), is to plop down a big pile of cash, which tends to limit the ability to fund those restorations to only the most nefarious types of people: criminals and real estate developers.

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