Archive for July, 2007

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Mullanphy Timeline

This “collage” was put together to send out with an update letter that will be going to everyone that has donated to the Mullanphy Emigrant Home stabilization effort thus far. Pictures range from the original building as it was in the 1870’s to the work that was done up to just a few days ago. If you would like to contribute, visit

(Click on image for a larger view)

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Summer in Old North

Been a while for this. Today’s pictures cover the neighborhood from the southern tip to the northern edge.

Old piece of machinery in one of the buildings on the 14th St. Mall.

The Arch sneaking between two new homes in North Market Place.

Flowers in front of a new home.

Setting up scaffolding to relay a brick wall on N. 19th St. This is a renovation of another LRA property.

Mullanphy Building after debris clean up. Visit to find out how you can help preserve the Mullanphy Emigrant Home.

Friday, July 20, 2007

The Neighborhood of Choice for the Bike-Friendly Crowd

Although we weren’t able to get any photos of this week’s Old North St. Louis Architectural Tour (by bike), we do have some good shots of previous bike rides through ONSL, courtesy of our friends at Trailnet…The ride provides a good a demonstration of ONSL’s proximity to the Riverfront Trail, an asset that very few other neighborhoods can claim.
The ride included time to stop and appreciate the architectural beauty of ONSL’s 19th Century homes.The cyclists enjoyed a visit to the last stop at Crown Candy to replenish some of the calories that had been worked off during the ride.

The next ride through ONSL is scheduled for August 21. According to the flyer for the series of tours, the event offers an opportuntiy to “Explore the fascinating architecture of the Old North St. Louis neighborhood on these spur rides off the Riverfront Trail… The tour includes stops for historical and architectural interpretation and the last stop is Crown Candy (Buy your own).

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Rebuilding Mullanphy

Some work has resumed on the Mullanphy Emigrant Home. The south wall is being deconstructed so foundation repairs can start. A new foundation will eventually be poured on the south wall to support the new concrete blocks that will be layed to close up the wall. The bricks are being taken down one by one and put onto pallets along with the bricks that already had fallen. These bricks will be saved and used along with “new” used bricks to rebuild the wall. The north wall will not need a new foundation, and concrete blocks can be set on top of the existing wall.

Your contributions to the stabilization and rebuilding effort still are very much needed. Original estimates for rebuilding the damaged walls alone amounted to approximately $350,000. Visit for more information on how to contribute and more information about the historical significance of the Mullanphy Emmigrant home, or you can just click the PayPal Button on the right side of the blog. You can also track the fundraising progress on the Mullanphy Meter.

Below are pictures of the work taken on July 16, 2007.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Bike Tour Through ONSL Tonight

Further evidence that ONSL is a vibrant neighborhood with easy access to the best of our region’s outdoor recreational amenities… For more details on tonight’s bike ride through ONSL and other biking & hiking events, visit Trailnet’s website at As the flyer above indicates, you’ll get another chance to enjoy an “architectural tour of Old North St. Louis” by bike on August 21. Check back with us later for photos of tonight’s ride.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

ONSL’s Phil Valko Honored as One of “30 Under 30”

Congratulations to ONSL resident and ONSLRG Board Treasurer Phil Valko for his selection as one of the St. Louis Business Journal’s “30 Under 30” for 2007. The annual list honors St. Louisans under the age of 30 who are making a mark on our region through their careers or community involvement. The selection committee took note of Phil’s work as active living program manager at Trailnet, his founding of The Urban Studio, and his service on the Board at ONSLRG. Take a look at the full profile of Phil in this week’s issue of the St. Louis Business Journal.

Among the comments that made their way into print were Phil’s observations on why he has chosen to live in ONSL:

“I am rehabbing a beautiful 145-year-old stack of sticks and bricks in Old North St. Louis. Old North has an incredible sense of community; it’s diverse, full of creativity, and it is in the process of a remarkable, resident-driven revitalization. Plus, I can hop on my bike and be in downtown in 10 minutes, on the Riverfront Trail in five minutes or at the North City Farmers’ Market in two minutes.”

The full story (including details about the other “30 Under 30” honorees) can be found in the print edition of the St. Louis Business Journal, and online for subscribers.
On most Saturdays Phil can be found at the North City Farmers’ Market, coordinating activities of The Urban Studio or engrossed in a game of chess.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Opportunities for Redeveloping the Near North Side

In the aftermath of Governor Blunt’s veto of HB 327, we’ve heard from a lot of people who are wondering what that means for Old North St. Louis. The short answer is that whether or not the tax credit for land assemblage ever resurfaces, we will continue our work toward a comprehensive revitalization of Old North St. Louis in a manner that respects this neighborhood’s historic, cultural and urban character. We extend an invitation to any individual or developer who wants to work with the community in support of that mission. In fact, a few weeks ago, ONSLRG Board President John Burse (with some input from executive director Sean Thomas) drafted the following commentary and sent it to the Post-Dispatch, as a follow-up to their article on June 17:

For over 25 years the Old North St Louis Restoration Group has worked to revitalize the Old North St. Louis neighborhood – the historic district home to the venerable Crown Candy Kitchen. In recent years we have made tremendous progress.

North Market Place is a thriving redevelopment of new single family homes and work-force affordable historic apartments. Our efforts to save the historic Mullanphy Emigrant Home have gained momentum and captured community attention. The soon-to-break ground transformation of the 14th Street Mall area into a dynamic mixed use district will continue the work currently underway. The dollar figures involved are outstanding – totaling nearly $45 million – but such figures are abstract and hard to appreciate. What is palpable? The synergy of new families from all walks of life moving in to join a richly diverse community.

What have been the key ingredients in establishing progress? A community-based vision and the work of building strong working relationships are the core of our successes. The vision we have been working so diligently toward is based completely upon what area residents and stakeholders have identified as being a desirable outcome: a sustainable revitalization in a manner equitably respecting its physical and social character. The partnerships we have created with the Regional Housing & Community Development Alliance, Mayor Francis Slay, Alderwoman April Ford Griffin, government and not-for-profit agencies, foundations, and private enterprise have served to leverage the required expertise and energy. Without the vision and the relationships, we would certainly not be where we are today.

Recent media coverage regarding the now-vetoed Land Assembly Tax Credit highlighted Paul McKee’s involvement in our community and indicated that he is looking into partnering with others. The Post-Dispatch article of June 17 covered statewide interest in creating incentives to address challenges we are all-too-familiar with: assembling property to redevelop. The work we have underway has entailed a significant amount of arduous site assembly. Our hope is that when the General Assembly revisits the land assembly credit, it will refine this proposed tool to make it more useful on a scale appropriate to the grain and character of the city’s diverse and walkable neighborhoods.

As there is an abundance of opportunity to make a positive difference in the City’s revitalization, we welcome the interest of any developer who wants to work with the community in the pursuit of neighborhood revitalization. We have long recognized our work as setting the stage for others to join the chorus. To any partnership with developers committed to this vision, we bring a locally established presence, a strong advocacy for resident concerns, and the vision and capacity to realize opportunities inherent to our community.

Such a working partnership could leverage each partner’s strengths and ability to realize our goals many times over. Our position of trust within the community could be of assistance in developing a community-based vision for the broader near North side community. Such a dialogue is essential to generate trust and positive momentum. We would welcome an opportunity to develop and implement preservation planning for Paul McKee’s vast holdings of historic properties, along with any other owner of historic properties. As an advocate for the area, our “sales office” presence could even be of use marketing these properties to historic rehabbers or other developers.

These “what-ifs” only begin to touch on the value we could bring to such a partnership and the places we could go. Together our sense is that we could leverage each other’s vision and energy. We stand ready and willing to engage in dialogue with Paul McKee and other interested parties toward an outcome that is socially, ecologically, and financially positive for all.

Friday, July 6, 2007

Farewell, Thank You, & Good Luck to Irvetta Williams

Today is the last day on the job as ONSLRG’s Real Estate Development Coordinator for Irvetta Williams. We have thoroughly enjoyed working with Irvetta during her time with us, and we all greatly appreciate the professionalism and effort that Irvetta put in to various initiatives. Among the highlights are the partnership to market LRA properties to prospective developers and rehabbers; the Developers’ Fair in 2005; the Rehab Academy in 2006; support and assistance to several buyers of LRA properties; and countless planning and construction meetings with our partners on the North Market Place Homes, the North Market Place Apartments, and the 14th Street Mall.
Above: Irvetta reviewed the real estate accomplishments of 2005 at ONSLRG’s Annual Meeting in January of 2006.

Above: In the spring & summer of 2006, Irvetta coordinated the Rehab Academy for current & future ONSL residents and anybody who wanted to learn a little more about the rehab process.

In the short-term, Irvetta plans to spend some time off enjoying the summer vacation with her daughter, but she has agreed to return periodically to check up on the progress around ONSL and to indulge in a caramel sundae at Crown Candy Kitchen. Thank you and good luck , Irvetta!
Thursday, July 5, 2007

Summer in Old North

Hope everyone had a good 4th of July. The downtown fireworks were beautiful from various vantage points throughout the neighborhood. Unfortunately, my pictures didn’t turn out to be of quality to post. Today’s pictures instead come from several rehabs directly across Hebert from the last picture, showing some of the various sizes and styles of homes in Old North St. Louis.

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Summer in Old North

Picture are back after a week of vacation. Enjoy.

Scaffolding along the Hebert streetscape.


Welcome to the Old North St. Louis Restoration Group's blog. What's New in Old North chronicles the dramatic transformation under way in the neighborhood of Old North St. Louis. As a neighborhood just north of Downtown St. Louis, Old North is becoming a dynamic urban village of new and historic homes, a landmark eating establishment, beautiful community gardens, and a diverse, friendly, and engaged community.

  • RSS

    Subscribe to this blog's RSS feed (what's this?)