Starbucks

(Maria Altman|St. Louis Public Radio)

When the Starbucks in Ferguson opens in the spring, it will be more than a new coffee place.

Getting a Starbucks is a big deal for the small city that saw several businesses go up in flames in the aftermath of Michael Brown’s death in 2014.

"There’s probably that belief in some people’s minds that people would be hesitant to make an investment along West Florissant or an investment in north county," said Ferguson Mayor James Knowles. "The fact that Starbucks has stepped up to do that, we’re very excited and very appreciative."

(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.