A lot has been happening on State Street since the last time I posted any photographs of the downtown area of Granite City. Galen Gandolfi, who had opened the first art gallery on Cherokee Street, Fort Gondo, bought a series of buildings at tax auctions on State Street, and has opened up the Granite City Art and Design District.
Working with his staff, they have been slowly renovating the buildings, and art galleries are now open in three of them.
Update: You can see the Moose Lodge in greater detail here.
What is interesting is how the buildings of the arts district work with other businesses and private clubs in the downtown area, which is pretty close to being completely abandoned. There is so much potential, low crime, and low rents, allowing for people to do what they want creatively.
Moving south away from the traditional downtown of Granite City, there is a small residential district with some of the oldest houses in the city, I believe.
Then, getting closer to Madison, there are factories, reminding us that there is still an industrial presence on the East Side besides the steel mill.