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Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Eco-Friendly Infill Coming to Old North St. Louis

Matt Fernandez, author of the blog St. Louis Evolution and future Old North resident rehabber, was kind enough to post on Urban St. Louis a rendering of possible infill for Old North to be developed in tandem by Habitat for Humanity St. Louis and EcoUrban. In all, 17 homes are expected to be built. Better still, both Habitat and, as their name might suggest, EcoUrban are planning to build the homes to be energy efficient and eco-friendly.

Note that this rendering is preliminary and set to be revised. See the Urban St. Louis forum topic here (yes, it's back up...and better than ever, FYI!).


And a very preliminary site plan to show the lots to be built upon here:



Personally, I love the idea of building new, eco-friendly flounder houses. They're basically unique to St. Louis. Those shown above have one other great feature--no brick! Look...I love brick as much as the next St. Louisan, but our old masonry work is expensive and difficult to replicate. Why not use contemporary materials?

The added density on Dodier, Sullivan, and Hebert only solidifies Old North's most solid and intact streets. With luck, we'll see other builders tackle some of the more challenging areas of Old North (such as its southern and northern extremes).

What do you think?

UPDATE: See Old North's own blog post on this topic here.

Second Update (2/3/2010): Per a commenter on this post, you can count on the rendering that there are actually 17 Habitat homes specifically, with a possible six additional (judging by that drawing) to come from EcoUrban. The two are not "collaborating" per se but are co-locating their developments.

4 comments:

Brian said...

Hmmm...not sure.

Ben said...

A few things:

1. The 17 homes will be built by Habitat with no involvement by EcoUrban. EcoUrban has, however, expressed an interest in building additional houses to be co-located with the Habitat homes.

2. The Habitat houses will be eco-friendly, however. They are pursuing LEED certification (the last homes they built were certified Platinum), using recycled materials where possible, putting in 95% efficient furnaces, and offering an optional geothermal system.

3. The extreme southern end of the neighborhood won't be around for much longer, due to the coming new bridge and Mr. McKee. His project area includes roughly the bottom third of the neighborhood (by area, not population).

Matt M. said...

Thanks for the comments and corrections, Ben.

One thing though...the southern portion of the neighborhood is still planned for renovation for the bike trestle project, right? There are a couple remaining historic buildings (near Tyler and Hadley) that are shown renovated in a rendering for the Iron Horse Trestle Project. This site is a couple blocks north of Cass, where the bridge is to empty into.

Ben said...

As far as I know, the trestle project is still planned for some future date. But check out McKee's project boundaries: http://www.northsideregeneration.com/Implement/boundary.html

I'm not sure to what extent the two have been talking, but McKee seems to include the trestle until it crosses 70.

Unfortunately, the City recently "accidentally" demo'd a sound building at the foot of the trestle without preservation review. Very disappointing.

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