Here’s a novel idea; build and rehab houses just outside of your main business district so people who work downtown can walk to work.
The area around Kansas City’s cathedral is a combination of original Italianate houses combined with housing that looks like it was built in the 1990’s or slightly earlier.
Regardless of its date of construction, the in-fill fits in well with the surrounding historic architecture and supports a thriving neighborhood.
St. Louis could learn about the idea of having healthy neighborhoods surrounding its downtown; currently St. Louis is surrounded by interstates, vacant lots and undesirable housing projects. When was the last time you walked to downtown St. Louis from your house? Never? It’s not like that in every American city.