Rebuild in North St Louis

Rebuild Foundation

Funding Received: 2013
St. Louis, MO
Funding Period: 1 year and 5 months
July 1, 2013

Inside 1419, in the future location of our brick oven; photo by Charlie Vinz

Since June, we've begun to assemble our team of building professionals that are going to help us transform 1419 into a beautiful new community art space. We've met with people in the St. Louis building department to go over our plans, which involve re-zoning the building from residential to mixed-use. Since we've done this before, they know we have a good history with this aspect of the project. Also, since the building is located in a historic district, our plans will be reviewed by the Cultural Resources Office to ensure that we comply with certain historic details.

As part of the planning process, we're also working to schedule a series of moments throughout the design and construction process to include our neighbors and primary community stakeholders. We've already held a number of clean-up days to keep the area outside of the building clear of trash and debris prior to construction, but we're planning to continue a deeper involvement in the design and build process of the building.

Recent Wins
Our Hyde Park art and design summer camp kicked off this week. Participants in the program will be thinking about the design of the exterior spaces around both 1415 and 1419 Mallinckrodt. They will also be creating custom pavers that will form the basis of walkways around the buildings. The camp will go through the first week of August.

We welcomed Rae Chardonnay, a past St. Louis resident who now lives in Chicago, to Hyde Park. Rae does programming with us on Dorchester in Chicago and helps manage performances for the Black Monks of Mississippi. She is in residence with us for several weeks to help prep our spaces in 1415, and to help run our summer camp. She brings the wonderful welcoming energy and spirit necessary to make our spaces and programs shine.


Milling around after an evening meeting with summer camp applicants and parents at 1415; photo by Charlie Vinz

We've done a thorough walkthrough of the building with design and engineering professionals and have found that, though there is significant deterioration throughout, the structural bones of the building are in great shape. Buildings like this are wonderfully positioned to be completely reconsidered in how we can adapt them, sometimes radically, for new and relevant uses while maintaining a familiar exterior appearance. It is this mix of the familiar and new that can help people feel welcome in our spaces. The element of surprise upon seeing something familiar adapted in such a different way is then what can help visitors see the potential their communities really have.