Friday, March 21, 2008

Daily Dose of Blairmont 19

  • 1602 N. 14th Street (Blairmont Associates LLC, May 2001)

November 2007

Here is where fear and despair butt heads with hope.

1602 N. 14th Street faces the Mullanphy Emigrant Home, a building of enormous historical value to the city, at the south end of Old North St. Louis. The former Emigrant Home suffered a partial wall collapse in 2006.

If Blairmont or a sister company owned the Mullanphy, it would have been rubble long ago. Blairmont would have let it sit for months unsecured, unprotected, and unsupported, a hazard to local residents. The City of St. Louis would have had to condemn the building, then front the money and labor to demolish it, and send Paul McKee the bill.

Fortunately, Blairmont does not own the Mullanphy Emigrant Home. It was purchased by a neighborhood renovation group, who are campaigning hard to raise money, labor and material for its repair and eventual restoration. It may take time, and it definitely will take much help, but the building has a fighting chance.

Across the street, however, is another story. Purchased by Blairmont in 2001 or earlier (one of their earliest buys), the little red house at 1602 N. 14th Street is now vacant, boarded, tagged by graffiti artists, and deteriorating.

What will its future be? Under Paul McKee's ownership, it has no future. Is this what the hard work of ordinary locals deserves in response?

No comments: