One hundred years ago, there wasn’t a lot at the intersection of Grand and Chouteau; there was a quarry, some houses, but no signs of the massive buildings that would one day fill the area.
On a recent Saturday, I had the pleasure of joining a picnic at the intersection, in one of the large, empty lawns that stretch out to the southeast.
It’s striking how elevated the location is, and it provides stunning views of the the city from midtown all the way to downtown.
As the Twentieth Century unfolded, institutions like SLU Hospital were built, along with the Pevely Dairy.
Sadly, despite such huge building being around, the area is desolate, and not just because of the closure of the Grand Viaduct. Frankly, there is nowhere to walk to, or from in this area, and the only passersby seemed to be transferring bus lines.
I understand on the edges of cities desolation is perhaps normal, but in the heart of the city?
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This is a little OT, but…There was once an immense, castle-like building just South of Chouteau between Kickory and Rutger on Grand. It was the armory home of Battery A, 128th Field Artillery, MO National Guard. It was built sometime before 1900 and was raxed in the '70s (I think). Wohl Health institute occupies the site.It was quite large, with a huge area behind the building (more a thick facade than a building, really) where vehicles stored.The only photo I could find is here: http://www.google.com/imgres?q=armory+on+grand+ave+st+louis&um=1&hl=en&sa=N&biw=1024&bih=600&tbm=isch&tbnid=6z4cfFt5p8wK9M:&imgrefurl=http://stlexplorer.wordpress.com/2010/02/21/the-armory/&docid=Xr-SmdBB79DytM&imgurl=http://stlexplorer.files.wordpress.com/2010/02/51732089-390000batteryaarmoryinst-louis.jpg%253Fw%253D450%2526h%253D338&w=450&h=338&ei=cizETue7LarY2QX2l_3ZDg&zoom=1&iact=rc&dur=140&sig=112706696139966200010&page=1&tbnh=130&tbnw=173&start=0&ndsp=15&ved=1t:429,r:2,s:0&tx=89&ty=78I almost joined this unit in '63, but wound up in a CE unit at JB.