Tuesday, July 3, 2012
Another Corner Lost on a Desolate Stretch of Taylor
The stretch of Taylor Avenue between Delmar & Page is a stark wasteland of mostly vacant lots and surface parking lots. Compared to other nearby north-south streets and the east west residential streets, Taylor is especially desolate. Seven Twenty Five Liquor, a small drive-up store at Taylor & Enright is one of the few surviving businesses.
At Taylor and the old Hodiamont streetcar right-of-way a suburban style church is set back behind a deep lawn on the large property that was once the location of Missouri Baptist Sanitarium, the precursor of today's Missouri Baptist Hospital.
The intersection of Taylor and Lewis Place to the west & Finney to the east is one of the few bright spots along this stretch. Like a miniature Arc de Triomphe, the 1894 gate by Barnett, Haynes & Barnett stands guard at the east end of historic Lewis Place. Across the street is an attractive small historic building that houses a neighborhood tavern but sits isolated as an island at the corner of a large surface parking lot of Ranken Technical College. While it seems to have lost its cornice the building, the building appears relatively well maintained.
One block further north at the intersection of Taylor & Newberry Terrace was a lovely large stone residence with a corner turret. The home was later converted to a funeral home with a rear wing, entrance and circle drive off Taylor. Several years ago a small section of the front masonry wall between two second floor windows collapsed. As you can see, while creating a large opening, the collapse did not pose major structural issues for the rest of the building and was easily repairable. A bearing wall running down the middle of the second floor supported the third floor and roof structure.
The building held the corner of a fairly solid block that is a mix of historic homes and recent infills, many built by Ranken students. The front wall was apparently not the first exterior masonry issue for the home. A building permit was applied for in October 2002 to repair an exterior masonry (presumably the area of unpainted brick just behind the turret) wall at the cost of $4,000.00. A few electrical permits were also applied for through June 2004. In 2007 ownership changed from private hands to the City's LRA. On 4.28.11 the owner became Ranken Technical College, and in June 2011, a demolition permit for the entire building was applied for with an estimated cost of $38,500.00.
A close-up of the turret with the date of the home's construction: 1892
Today the corner is another vacant lot on this dreary stretch of Taylor.