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Ten Projects Shaping St. Louis 

click to enlarge There's plenty to spark the imagination at the St. Louis Aquarium at Union Station.

COURTESY THE ST. LOUIS AQUARIUM AT UNION STATION

There's plenty to spark the imagination at the St. Louis Aquarium at Union Station.

From downtown to Creve Coeur, the St. Louis area is in the middle of a makeover. There are new developments and districts popping up all over the map. The Midtown area, in particular, is seeing a lot of action. If you want to know what the future of St. Louis is going to look like, behold these ten new projects — some already under construction, and some so far just dreams in progress.

Armory District

This mixed-use redevelopment in St. Louis' hot Midtown area will include a restaurant, a greenway path and 250,000 square feet of office space. Plans for the Armory District (armorydistrict.com) include a renovation of the historic Armory building, which St. Louisans will recognize as that beautiful old structure that is next to Goodwill Outlet. The gorgeous Art Deco building has a long history of redevelopment — the former Missouri National Guard space was also once known as a music venue and a tennis hub.

Ballpark Village Phase 2

Set to start opening next summer, this next addition to Clark Street provides more than just a place to party. Ballpark Village Phase 2 (stlballparkvillage.com/ballpark-village-phase-2) will transform the district entirely. The 700,000-square-foot project includes a hotel, office building, retail space, restaurants and a high-rise luxury residential tower with views of the stadium. The $260 million project promises to "bring the village to Ballpark Village" and is projected to add more than a thousand permanent new jobs to downtown.

Chouteau Greenway

Greenways are the paths of the future, and the Chouteau Greenway (greatriversgreenway.org/chouteau) aims to transform St. Louis. The free, accessible trail will be a place where St. Louisans can exercise, commute or explore. The final path for the greenway is not set yet because the project is still gathering feedback from the community, but according the website, organizers are looking to build a path "that stretches from Forest Park to Gateway Arch National Park and Tower Grove to Fairground Parks through twenty city neighborhoods."

City Foundry

City Foundry (cityfoundrystl.com) is due to open next spring along Forest Park Avenue and is sure to transform the Midtown area forever. Located just across South Vandeventer Avenue from IKEA, City Foundry will be a mixed-use, fifteen-acre community destination with office space, restaurants, shops, entertainment and a food hall. Alamo Drafthouse Cinema (where you can enjoy a brew and a film) is slated to open a location within the center, and a 700-person event space called 18Rails, to be run by Butler's Pantry, is also part of the plan.

Major League Soccer Stadium

Major League Soccer (mls4thelou.com) is finally returning to St. Louis with the arrival of our very own stadium. The 30-acre proposed stadium development site is just northwest of Union Station in the Downtown West neighborhood. Plans for the open-air arena include canopy shading and a seating capacity of 22,500, with each seat within 120 feet of the pitch. But this development won't just be a place for soccer; the plan, according to the project's website, is for the area to become an "urban activity hub open year-round and easily accessible via pedestrian pathways, bicycle and public transit."

click to enlarge Soak in St. Louis on foot or by bicycle by the Chouteau Greenway. - COURTESY GREAT RIVERS GREENWAY
  • COURTESY GREAT RIVERS GREENWAY
  • Soak in St. Louis on foot or by bicycle by the Chouteau Greenway.

NGA West Campus

The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency is planning to build a new 97-acre campus in the historic St. Louis Place neighborhood at the intersection of Jefferson and Cass avenues. Next NGA West (nextngawest.com) will include a 712,000-square-foot office building and a visitor control center. Not only is it expected to be the largest federal investment project in the history of St. Louis, but the $1.7 billion development also includes a plan to restructure two miles of North Jefferson Avenue to upgrade driving and sidewalk conditions. The groundbreaking was in November 2019, and a majority of the project is expected to be completed by 2023.

St. Louis Aquarium

As of December 25, Union Station now boasts yet another new attraction: the St. Louis Aquarium (stlouisaquarium.com). The former train station has seen many purposes over the years, but with the recent additions of the St. Louis Wheel, multiple restaurants, a mini-golf area, rope climbing course and zipline, Union Station is again fulfilling its purpose as a destination for fun and adventure. Located inside the former Union Station mall area, the aquarium occupies 120,000 square feet and includes the usual thrilling sea creatures, such as sharks, jellyfish and eels. It features a space to learn all about our local freshwater rivers and animals, too.

Square

Founded by St. Louis natives Jack Dorsey (CEO of Twitter) and Jim McKelvey, Square, Inc. (squarep.com) started as a mobile payment company and has grown into a financial- and merchant-services empire. Currently located inside the happening Cortex office space, Square is moving downtown into a 235,000-square-foot home in the former headquarters of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch in order to expand its operations and employee roster. The company has signed a fifteen-year lease, and the move is expected to allow it to hire an additional 700 employees.

39 North

The master plan for this 600-acre development in Creve Coeur was funded by a $500,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce and includes proposals to build a mixed retail, office and residential area connected by green space and biking trails. Located at the intersection of Olive and Lindbergh boulevards, 39 North (39northstl.com) secured $4 million in federal transportation funding with a $1 million match from St. Louis County to construct the new interchange there, too, which should relieve traffic in the area and open up access to the live/work development.

Hyperloop

We'll know when the future has really arrived in St. Louis because we'll finally get our long-awaited Hyperloop. Still just a pipe dream, the proposed high-speed transportation route would shuttle travelers from St. Louis to Kansas City in less than 30 minutes. Proponents says the Hyperloop could provide cheap travel for more than 5 million people and save Missouri $500 million per year. Missouri Governor Mike Parson recently announced the formation of a panel to look into the specifics of the project, including a possible test track.

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