CityArchRiver

A rendering of Leonore K. Sullivan along the proposed north riverfront water park.
courtesy Great Rivers Greenway

With the Gateway Arch grounds renovations nearing completion, the Great Rivers Greenway District is gearing up for another big project. The district and the city of St. Louis presented initial plans to revitalize the north riverfront Wednesday night at a public meeting.

The basic idea is for Great Rivers Greenway to spur investment in the area by creating a continuous waterfront park along the Mississippi from Laclede’s Landing north to the Stan Musial Bridge.

Rendering of the exterior of the renovated Arch museum.
CityArchRiver

The timing might have been better, Walter L. Metcalfe Jr. said Wednesday.

His plan was to remain as chairman of the CityArchRiver Foundation through Oct. 28, 2015, the golden jubilee of the topping off of the Gateway Arch, which is the central feature of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial, the signature of St. Louis.

Oct. 28 was his marker, Metcalfe said, his exit cue. He said he had no desire to stay on for the next phase of the project, the organization of a conservancy for the Arch-centered project.

Elementary students from KIPP Victory Academy in St. Louis and Rockwood Center for Creative Learning in Ellisville break ground on the Arch museum expansion Wednesday, April 29, 2015. CityArchRiver Executive Director Maggie Hales looks on from back.
Camille Phillips | St. Louis Public Radio

Construction is underway on the Gateway Arch museum expansion.  The groundbreaking ceremony for the latest phase of the $380 million CityArchRiver project was held Wednesday at the site of the future entryway to the museum, sandwiched between the Arch and the soon-to-be-completed park over the highway.

Red and violet hues are seen in discoloration on the Gateway Arch, as an engineer and scientist from Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc., studies its exterior.
Courtesy of Wiss, Janney, Elstner Associates, Inc.

The stains on the Gateway Arch's steel surface are not due to significant structural distress, deterioration or corrosion, according to the results of a comprehensive study on the monument's structural health released Thursday.

Courtesy CityArchRiver

Most of the renovations at the Gateway Arch are scheduled to be finished in October, in time for the monument’s 50th anniversary.

Work on the park over the highway, Luther Ely Smith Square and the riverfront will be done by October, said Ryan McClure, CityArchRiver’s communications director. CityArchRiver is a $380 million effort to connect the Gateway Arch and the city.

The completed bottom component of the "park over the highway."
Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio

Deanna Venker of the Missouri Department of Transportation is accustomed to building bridges for cars and trucks.

But MoDOT’s area engineer for the city of St. Louis said constructing the so-called “park over the highway” in front of the Gateway Arch is a bit out of the ordinary.

“This is a very different bridge in the sense that there’s not going to be any cars or trucks going over,” Venker said. “It’s strictly a park over the highway for pedestrians and bicyclists that are coming into the park area.”

CityArchRiver says water features allow for play but can be turned on or off, opening up more room for other activities. The fountains will be lit and can change colors for events and celebrations.
CityArchRiver

If there’s a sports-related rally, a festival, even a gathering of protesters or an outdoor civic event in the city, chances are that it will happen in downtown’s Kiener Plaza. In the view of some, Kiener works just fine as it is.

But what if:

Jason Rosenbaum, St. Louis Public Radio

The group in charge of overhauling Kiener Plaza is giving the public a taste of what's to come.

CityArchRiver had an open house on Monday in downtown St. Louis to give the public a view of Kiener Plaza's redesign plans. It’s part of a broader project to revamp the Gateway Arch grounds over the next few years.

The group is planning to add an extensive playground and an interactive fountain. The project will also include a large event lawn for concerts and movies, as well as a place for people to park their bicycles.

The trees that are slated for removal on the Arch grounds are marked with a pink ribbon.
Rebecca Smith/St. Louis Public Radio

The National Park Service will start removing 1,200 trees on the Gateway Arch grounds in earnest on Monday. 

The removal is part of a years-long project by CityArchRiver to renovate the popular tourist attraction, and it could start as early as Friday, according to the group's communications director Ryan McClure. He said the first few trees are coming down Friday to move in construction equipment.

Representatives of the National Park Service, Great Rivers Greenway, the City of St. Louis and the CityArchRiver 2015 Foundation break ground on the next phase of the CityArchRiver 2015 renovations.
Rebecca Smith/St. Louis Public Radio

The next round of renovations for the Gateway Arch grounds has begun.  On Thursday, representatives from the National Park Service, the City of St. Louis and other supporting organizations were on hand for the groundbreaking.

CityArchRiver 2015 renovations are geared toward making the grounds more accessible and enjoyable for all visitors.  

Camille Phillips/St. Louis Public Radio

A major step in the Gateway Arch grounds renovation is taking place this weekend, causing road closures and detours in downtown St. Louis.

Working around the clock from Friday night until Monday morning, Missouri Department of Transportation crews are placing 40 large girders over the depressed lanes of I-44. It’s the first step in building the land bridge that will connect downtown St. Louis with the Arch grounds.

The CityArchRiver Foundation

Vice President Biden visited St. Louis earlier this week to view the improvement project underway on the grounds of the Gateway Arch. He said the project was a model of public-private partnership.

But how is the project coming along? CityArchRiver Communications Director Ryan McClure appeared on St. Louis on the Air today to give an update on the project’s progress.

Jason Rosenbaum/St. Louis Public Radio

Right after CityArchRiver 2015 Foundation had announced its latest tally in private funding to spruce up the Gateway Arch grounds, sportscaster Joe Buck helped push the total a little higher.

Buck told patrons lunching in Ballpark Village that the group was within $20 of raising an even $178,210,000. He managed to coax somebody wearing a Chicago Blackhawks jersey to hand over $100, prompting the room full of St. Louis Blues fans to cheer.   

Buck – who helped emcee CityArchRiver’s event announcing the fundraising figure – said he was impressed by the project’s progress.

CityArchRiver2015

The Walnut Street Bridge downtown near the Gateway Arch reopens Friday afternoon along with a new permanent traffic configuration.

MoDOT has been working over the past two months to replace the span with a wider, two-way bridge over I-44 as part of the CityArchRiver2015 redevelopment project.

On both sides of the highway, Memorial Drive will be permanently rerouted to make way for the new park that will bridge the Arch Grounds to the rest of downtown, said MoDOT engineer Deanna Venker.

Joseph Leahy/St. Louis Public Radio and The Beacon

Ed Lammering wore his top hat to a groundbreaking last month beside the Gateway Arch, but left his horse, Lukes, at the St. Louis Carriage Company’s stable on the other side of Busch Stadium.  He held a sign which read, “Where do we stand? – carriage drivers.”

The carriage company is among several businesses that have concerns about the impact of the $360 million CityArchRiver 2015 project. Work will include expanding the Arch grounds over Interstate 70, carving out a new central entrance for the underground museum and numerous other major improvements.

If your daily commute includes heading west out of downtown St. Louis on I-70, you may need to find an alternate route.

Shortly after rush hour on Monday morning, the Missouri Department of Transportation is permanently closing the ramp from Pine Street to westbound I-70.

The closure paves the way for work on the Park Over the Highway, which is part of the CityArchRiver 2015 plans to revamp the Gateway Arch grounds.

MoDOT spokesman Andrew Gates said the ramp will ultimately be replaced early next year.

Joseph Leahy / St. Louis Public Radio

An effort to improve safety and access between the Gateway Arch and the riverfront has begun. City leaders and developers kicked off construction Thursday afternoon on the second phase of redeveloping the Arch grounds.

The $33-million project, centered along Leonor K. Sullivan Bvld., will elevate the corridor by nearly three feet to reduce flooding as well as add bike paths, walkways, better lighting and landscaping.

Courtesy CityArchRiver

Construction of the Central River Project along the Gateway Arch begins November 14. It is a key component of the CityArchRiver 2015 redevelopment plans. Great Rivers Greenway is taking the lead on the project.

(via Flickr/Zahlm)

A busy area of downtown St. Louis will close for about a month starting today as part of the project to improve the area around the Gateway Arch.

The Missouri Department of Transportation says Washington Avenue between Memorial Drive and Second Street will shut down after Monday morning rush hour.

The closing is part of a project to create a parkway over Interstate 70 and improve access between the Arch area and the rest of downtown. The multi-million dollar project is expected to be complete in 2015.

Courtesy CityArchRiver

The Missouri Department of Transportation began making improvements today to the ramps from the MLK and Eads bridges to westbound Interstate 70. It's part of the $26 million park over the highway.

MoDOT spokesman Drew Gates says this first phase will not change routes to downtown or the Gateway Arch.

“We’ll continue to make sure people are able to get to the Gateway Arch and be able to enjoy that during the construction process," Gates said.

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