One Down, One To Go

Friday marked an important step in the evolution of downtown St. Louis. As the skybridge fell at the former St. Louis Centre this afternoon, we were reminded of the countless demolitions that St. Louis has borne witness to over the past 80 years – a period that will ultimately be remembered more for what we destroyed than for what we built.  Decades of careless removal of our cultural heritage in favor of roads and highways that stifled pedestrian activity, damaging urban renewal policies that divided our communities, and architecture designed to wall us off from one another has left St. Louis without the means to provide the engaging, authentic experience essential for any vibrant city.

The good news is that things have begun to change, and we are righting the ship.  There is clearly much to admire about the progress St. Louis has made in recent years. Friday, rather losing another historic building to the wrecking ball, we instead saw the removal of one of the misguided walls that have kept us from experiencing the grandeur of our city.

This is, however, merely the beginning.  For when the skybridge fell, the view revealed not our great river, but yet another barrier.

If we are truly dedicated to reconnecting St. Louis, then we must set our sights on removing the disruptive section of Interstate 70 that divides our city from our river and our people from their rightful monument. Only then can we fulfill the promise of the original Arch plan, and engage in the task of returning downtown to greatness.

Our business and political leaders are watching and listening; waiting to see what we will do.  They know all too well that if St. Louis unites to demand a full reconnection of downtown to the river, then it must be delivered.  So go out and enjoy the new energy on Washington, and remember – our work is just beginning.

One Response to “One Down, One To Go”

  1. Adam says:

    it would be amazing to look down wash ave and be able to see the eads bridge and those red brick beauties on the landing!

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