4

Oregon Avenue Between Arsenal and Juniata Streets, Benton Park West, Fall 2020

Heading south on Oregon Avenue towards Juniata Street, we go through what was once the St. Louis Commons, an area of Karst Topography that was pockmarked with sinkholes, quarries and other rugged uneven land. As we can see from the Compton and Dry Pictorial St. Louis from 1876, Oregon was cut through late compare to neighboring parallel streets such as California and Iowa. Juniata is the red cross street, which was also not cut through yet. The City actually made residents pay for the grading and paving of their own streets, thus often delaying the building of streets, for obvious reasons.

Juniata gets squeezed out eventually, and ceases to exist to the east at Texas Avenue, due the slanting farm fields owned by L. Hardage Lane that came up from the river. The block is short, but there are some amazing houses, such as this Second Empire apartment building below. The upper floors were probably reached by back staircases.

This was probably once an Italianate shotgun, but it got “jazzed up” in the 1950s with some FormStone. I got used to seeing it living in Baltimore!

This is an amazing corner store, and I’ve mentioned before, the owner probably lived above his business with his family.

This was the end of the east side of the street, so now we’ll turn around and look at the west side of Oregon heading north from Juniata.

There is a bevy of amazing Second Empire houses on the west side, and one Romanesque Revival house, which at first we were surprised was sitting empty.

Oh, now we see what’s wrong! The front façade is totally falling apart! That is a problem.

I love this next Second Empire house with this particular Mansard roof style.

There is another one that was probably built by the same developer as we finish the west side of the street.

4 Comments

  1. Curious about how much of the property on the street is vacant and how much is occupied. Do you have a sense of that? I haven’t been to the Benton Park area in a few years, but it seemed to be getting rehabbed in spots.

    • Overall Benton Park West has fairly good occupancy levels, but there is some abandonment.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.