Saturday, December 5, 2009

Random Scenes along Euclid Avenue

Less than a block north of the Central West End MetroLink Station some work is being done in the pedestrian mall that replaced Euclid Avenue south of Parkview Place several years ago at the BJC-WU Medical Center.  Below the sidewalk pavement tracks form the long gone streetcar have been temporarily revealed.

At the northwest corner Forest Park Boulevard and Euclid, sewer and foundation work has begun on the new 12 story BJC clinic building that will replace the demolished Ettrick and another building to the north.

Farther north at 901 Euclid, is yet another example of a building that did not need to be demolished.  This corner storefront building was not at the intersection of two streets, but at the intersection of Euclid and the Hodiamont streetcar line, which ran in its own right-of-way that was not part of a street.  Located just two lots south of the homes that front Fountain Park, the building unfortunately was outside the boundary of the Aubert Place-Fountain Park Historic District. The surrounding area is part of the 18th Ward, which has been held back from Preservation Review by Alderman Terry Kennedy.

The photo above (from Geo St. Louis) tells the story of this building's demise.  Like so many similar buildings, the back wall suffered a partial collapse likely due to continual water damage from a missing gutter. The building was condemned by the City Building Division in September 2005 and demolished in June 2007.  The issue with this building is that the damage was reparable and since the floor and roof joists in these types of buildings almost always run side to side, the remaining structure was in no danger of collapse.  So as is typical in a case like this, the building is needlessly destroyed.

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