National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency Update
The Board of Aldermen is moving forward with plans to declare eminent domain on property slated for construction of the new National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (“NGA”). Declaring the property necessary for public use – even though the City already owns it – would shield it from legal action by potential creditors of Paul McKee. Such protections are necessary to ensure that the City can transfer the land to the Federal government with clean title later this year.
The eminent domain declaration, which I fully support, is a thoughtful contingency plan that will keep the NGA project on track and help jump-start economic development north of downtown St. Louis. It also will insulate the City from the effects of McKee’s legal and financial entanglements. Earlier this year, the City dissolved its partnership with McKee over his failure to redevelop 1,500 acres of land surrounding the NGA site.
General Obligation Bond Update
Alderman Frank Williamson and I recently introduced Board Bill No. 110, which formally authorizes the City to issue $50 million in general obligation bonds. The authorization is the direct result of Proposition No. 1, which was approved overwhelmingly by City voters on the August 7 ballot.
Once the issuance is fully authorized, the City will move quickly to sell bonds to investors. Funds will be used to purchase critical public safety equipment and make upgrades to City facilities that have suffered long periods of deferred maintenance. Because the City recently retired some of its older debt obligations – but has a property tax rate that remains sized for ongoing repayment – no tax increase is required to make this bond issuance possible.
St. Louis Hills Neighborhood Safety Committee Meeting
The St. Louis Hills Neighborhood Safety Committee will host its next meeting this Thursday, September 20 at 7 p.m.
at Buder Library
(4401 Hampton). All are invited to attend and learn about the progress that this group is making. St. Louis Metropolitan Police Officer Lisa Pisciotta also will be on hand to discuss the CrimeStoppers program.
Macklind Deli Demolition
Regretfully, the Macklind Deli – located at 4721 Macklind – is now slated for demolition. The iconic neighborhood eatery recently enjoyed new ownership, but caught fire on July 5. Even though 60 firefighters worked valiantly to battle the blaze and save all surrounding property, the deli has now been condemned by the City and must be demolished by its owner.
Although we are unsure what the future will bring to this site, I hope to help continue the commercial renaissance that has transpired along this stretch of Macklind Avenue. Please rest assured that any proposed use will require City approvals and involve ample discussion with neighborhood residents and business owners.
Art in the Park
Francis Park will host Art in the Park on Sunday, September 30
from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m.
Please mark your calendars and visit the event website
to learn more.
Neighborhood Office Hours
I will host my next neighborhood office hours on:
- Friday, October 5 from 8 a.m. – 9 a.m. at Living Room Southampton (5760 Chippewa)
- Thursday, October 25 from 6 p.m. – 7 p.m. at Edibles and Essentials (5815 Hampton)
Please stop by to discuss any neighborhood ideas, issues or concerns that you may have.