What is Wrong With St. Louis?

By on December 5, 2018

From St. Louis Post-Dispatch: by guest columnist, Greg Michaud

St. Louis was once a great city. After 60 years of steady decline there should be vigorous discussions on how to rebuild St. Louis. Instead, by 2020 over a billion dollars of public money will be given to developers and corporations as if tax giveaways are the only solution.

What if that billion dollars was invested in public infrastructure instead? Isn’t creating a desirable city that people want to live and work in a better strategy than bribing the already wealthy to locate in a damaged city?

A key problem is that the city of St. Louis has what can be best called the “whatever” system of planning. It is a reactive system: The city reacts to development proposals instead of guiding development in a creative and prosperous manner for the benefit of its citizens.

This reactive system of planning is a major factor in the way the automobile has been allowed to devour the human and pedestrian environment. The new Ikea should have been built alongside the street. This means an equal status for pedestrians, transit and the automobile.

In fact, great cities around the world use this simple planning technique to reserve streets for people. The experience of the driver is similar no matter what side of the building the parking is located.

Cities like London carry urban planning a step further designating areas as pedestrian priority zones, connecting them throughout the city.

Read more.


About Dede Hance


  1. Hair By Tina

    12/07/2018 at 3:09 AM

    Every city has their own problems and issues. Let’s hope for a good future

  2. James_Sib

    12/09/2018 at 6:16 AM

    This desperate, hopeful play about a young man creating a better future recalls something of William Burroughs’ fascination with using the written word to alter reality. In Williams’ case, the process succeeded in fantastic fashion. What was once an International Shoe Company warehouse is now the City Museum, a multi-story funhouse dedicated to rewiring the modern human brain to shun work in favor of exploring, dreaming and appreciating the beauty all around us. The delightful postscript is that these days in St. Louis, you can indeed escape through its roof to ride a Ferris wheel, or board an actual airplane and dream of world beyond.
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