Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Arch Design Competition Begins Today

Efforts to reconnect the Arch, the Riverfront and Downtown St. Louis begin today. The chosen method begins with an international design competition. The design competition program will lead to a plan for repositioning the way the Arch connects to the region. That plan comes with the possibility of substantial federal funding to make the project reality.

Among the world's most famous landmarks, the Arch is on par with the best. Unfortunately, it is located in a horrible setting, walled off from the community it represents. The setting is not appropriate for such a world class monument. As the design competition begins, consider how these other iconic landmarks relate to their surroundings:

The Sydney Opera House:

The US Capitol and Washington Monument:

The Eiffel Tower:

What do these landmarks have in common with the Gateway Arch? Do they suggest possibilities we might pursue?

Some say creativity is not really about originality but rather the combining and reworking of good ideas already learned.

Will our efforts result in experiences on par with visits to the world's other top landmarks? What would such an outcome mean for St. Louis?


Anonymous said...


All three are near bodies of water.

All three are in the heart of cities.

All three are major tourist attractions.

All are surrounded by or joined to greenspaces.

Anonymous said...

One thing that's interesting is the way both sides of the river in Paris are so densely developed.

The NPS is thinking of expanding its park to the east side. Do we really want a bunch of greenspace on the riverfront across from the Arch, or would it better to develop that area with more density?

Maybe the NPS connection to the east side ought to happen by making the Eads Bridge part of the JNEM? The Eads Bridge certainly played a major role in westward expansion.

Then perhaps the ESL riverfront could be developed with other uses, maybe condos or some other type of riverfront development.

Anonymous said...

there definitely needs to be development on the east riverfront.

I hate the gateway geyser and I hate the hotel and casino.

As a sports fan, and no one probably wants to hear this but, I'd prefer to put a new Rams stadium there.

There's tons of opportunities for infill already on the missouri side, so I'm not sure how successful condos would be. I'd also prefer to tackle infill on the missouri side before luxury condos go up on the eastside. Riverfront condos would help its tax base though. I don't want to digress into all that ESTL needs but its clearly more and better jobs.

east st. louis has a web of highways criss crossing the riverfront, and just beyond that is its grid which runs diagonally.

I think with bridges to the north and south and a metrolink stop and possible water taxi's a new rams stadium is an ideal demand driver. Condos and other housing can still go up along the riverfront but I'd like a new stadium directly across from the St. Louis Skyline.