Other Fall Updates, Fires, Demolitions, Etc.

It finally happened, the Mullanphy Emigrant Home, which I last looked at back in June of this year, caught on fire and burned to the ground on the night of September 14th.

There is certainly no grand conspiracy, but simply the fact that overnight lows reached 50 degrees, and a squatter’s fire probably spread out of control. Honestly, as I remarked back in November of 2021, this was really the only logical conclusion to the story.

And if the situation at the old Famous Barr/Railway Exchange Building caught fire, of course. It’s a fireproof concrete construction, so it will never burn down, but it can still be damaged by fires breaking out. What a horrible situation.

In other news, last month a former seafood market in University City was in the news for all the wrong reasons. The tenant was evicted and left behind their stock, which putrefied over the summer. Don’t feel too bad for the landlord, which according to my research, lives in California (what other state would we expect?), so of course they didn’t notice. I hope they enjoyed how their absentee landlordism cost them $7,000 a day in cleanup fees. And trust me, they’ll never see a dime of that over $300,000 in back rent from the former seafood market owners. See why I’m always railing against landlords who live in California? By the way, records also show the building once housed an IGA supermarket built in 1970, which I didn’t realize ever had a presence in the St. Louis region.

The CostCo nearby, which destroyed a huge portion of the Chinese and other nationalities’ business community along Olive, is now open behind the Great Wall of CostCo. Just wait, they’ll move one minute up I-170 to the Page Avenue exit in Overland as soon as the TIF expires.

In other depressing news, the former Lutheran Hospital has been in the news in the last month or so, concerning the wholescale stripping of its metal and any other thing of value. It’s not surprising, and honestly I think the whole complex should be demolished and the street grid restored. The original mansion, at the southeast corner of Ohio and Potomac could be preserved.

The demolition of the old A.G. Edwards building is coming along nicely, and will be soon replaced with two new hotels.

I was also happy to see the vacant Leona Apartments open again after redevelopment in Dutchtown. a year after I photographed it vacant.

The old St. Louis Syrup and Preserving Company southwest of the corner of N. 2nd and Cass Avenue is being demolished. I will assume nothing is being built in its place.

Ending on a high note, Lindell Boulevard is doing well.

5 Comments Add yours

  1. Sean B. says:

    It looks like the neglected remains of some old Mullanphy family’s emigrant house has made it completely towards a builder’s torch sadly. Like a cutters torch for scraped machinery. Plus those maintenance intact, Lindell Boulevard, luxury apartments are not that surprising when towards the geographic favoritism of certain areas beyond their “non paid employee” municipal and prefectural subjects. Like Saint Jones (as in keeping up with some made up Joneses) City and County would part of the same prefecture if Missouri was a made up Japanese island.
    Where the more general public, screw you attitudes towards architectural and artifact preservation. Along with some live scale replica recreations. Are allot more Seinfeld sitcom smug and openly indifferent than some proxy war zone Kharkiv meets Dnepropetrovsk, (you can’t have two Dnipro’s in one sentence) faster paced South Korea like long term population decline trend, “urban areas” Where’s Saint Bill Hicks when you need him?

  2. Brandon Otto says:

    Regarding IGA: out in St. Charles, at Hawthorn and Elm, there’s a locally-owned grocery store that used to be an IGA. Per their website, they opened in 1984. At some point (mid-2000s, I want to say?), they went totally independent and rebranded as Midtowne Market. They’re doing quite well, and, maybe a decade ago, they even bought out some extra space in their strip mall to expand. (I know there used to be a Hallmark store there, and maybe one more, besides the old Standard Drug that’s now a laundromat. The expanded space also has some nice St. Charles-centric murals decorating the windows.) For a while, some of their carts still had the IGA logo, but I think they’ve finally swapped them all out for newer, self-branded ones.

    1. cnaffziger says:

      Oh, I know that place! It’s a nice supermarket with good fried chicken. I didn’t realize it used to be an IGA. It’s an interesting commercial phenomenon when stores that belong to a chain strike out on their own.

  3. Everett Engbers says:

    I wouldn’t be so quick to blame California for all the absentee slum lord problems. There are plenty of slum lords who live in Texas. Trump’s son-in-law, Jared is one of the biggest slum lords in the world and he lives in New York. Then there is Paul Mckee who is undoubtably the worst of the worst. Many of these folks, however, tend to be foreign national entities since the US has no restriction on who buys up properties in this country. So they might have a California address but originate in Hong Kong or Shanghai. So, needless to say they don’t give one damn about how their lack of attention to their properties effects the character of communities.

  4. Everett says:

    BTW, the slum lords who own the Railway Exchange Building are from Florida. If the city and its recalcitrant mayor don’t take control over it soon it will be a smoldering empty shell before you know it. The winter is coming on and homeless campfires will finish it off if they don’t do something soon.

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