flying saucer

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

The building in Midtown which has become commonly known as the "Flying Saucer" will receive an award for its much-publicized transformation.

The Missouri Alliance for Historic Preservation will recognize the effort at their Preservation Honor Awards ceremony on Feb. 27.

A Starbucks moved into the former gas station and Del Taco restaurant in Sep. 2012 and a Chipotle restaurant is expected to inhabit the other side of the building in the coming weeks. 

The 'flying saucer' in St. Louis' Midtown made local headlines this year as preservationists fought to keep its unique, otherworldly shape intact. The Atlantic Cities has now nationally recognized this effort as one of its most important preservation battles of 2012.

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)

A new Starbucks opened Friday in a Midtown St. Louis building often called the 'flying saucer.'

The modern building faced an uncertain future last year when Del Taco closed and the developer Rick Yackey wanted to tear it down.

Preservationists and even some politicians fought for the saucer, and Yackey changed his mind, instead luring national tenants.

St. Louis architectural historian Michael Allen says it was a big save.