Liggett-Meyers Tobacco Company, North Side

The Liggett and Meyers Tobacco Factory stretches between Folsom and Park Avenues, and the north side of the building is perhaps not as often photographed. There are large rounded arch windows of what was originally the power plant, with ten boilers that were served by the massive octagonal smokestack. It’s one of the most popular…

New Development in McRee Town

I clearly had not been paying attention to what has been happening in McRee Town, which has been experiencing a huge amount of development over the last twenty years. For example, the old synagogue above, which was only active for a short amount of time as the Southside Hebrew Congregation from 1928 to 1944, is…

McRee Avenue, McRee Town, January 2020

It’s hard to truly convey how much McRee Town, or Botanical Heights, as it’s known today, has changed over the last twenty years. Take the two houses above; they used to have third companion to the left, which was in fact a right triangle-shaped loner due to the alley formed by nearby Vandeventer Avenue. It…

McRee and Tower Grove Avenues, McRee Town

I never thought I’d see the day when McRee Town saw redevelopment. It’s coming rapidly, and I can only imagine in a decade the old, dilapidated neighborhood will be replaced with renovated buildings. Updated with one from the vaults:

Central Industrial Drive, McRee Town

Update: There is another one of these industrial drives up north. Central Industrial Drive might be the most forgotten street in St. Louis, stretching from Vandeventer to Chouteau in a valley that stretches up to the Mill Creek Valley. It was packed with railroad tracks for over a century, but sometime presumably in the mid…

Folsom Avenue, McRee Town

The eclectic nature of the area’s architecture continues on the northern end of the residential area. There was a Jewish population in the neighborhood for a while, as this former synagogue attests. Folsom Avenue is dominated by the gigantic Liggett-Meyers Tobacco Factory, which is gigantic, to be blunt. It stretches the entire length of the…

McRee Avenue, McRee Town

Update: Many of the abandoned buildings in these photos, and particular the large house in the photo below, have been renovated as of the winter of 2020. Redevelopment is coming to McRee Avenue, though many buildings still empty. Perhaps what is most striking is the variable housing stock, everything from a stately house that one…

Lafayette Avenue, McRee Town

McRee Town. For many people, the name no longer exists; they call it Botanical Heights nowadays. I don’t, and probably never will. McRee Town is an example of what happens to a neighborhood that is left to slumlords, cut off from other healthier neighborhoods by the interstate, and then left to rot. Take Lafayette Avenue;…

McRee Town This Week

Update: Of the three houses on McRee Avenue just east of Vandeventer Avenue, the two houses on the right have been rehabbed; the house on the left has been demolished. Long troubled, long misunderstood, I will look at McRee Town, now relabeled Botanical Heights, all this week.