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Feds hand over Abram Building to city

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By Matt Sepic, KWMU

St. Louis – Federal officials Monday signed over a downtown federal building to the city of St. Louis.

The city is paying $7.5 million for what was until Monday known as the Abram Federal Building.

Mayor Francis Slay said part of the facility will be converted into a parking garage for the Kiel Opera House and the Scottrade Center, formerly known as the Savvis Center.

"The productive reuse of the Abram Building will be another step forward in the revitalization of downtown St. Louis," Slay said. "The Kiel Opera House is a beautiful historic structure that can once again be a showcase for great events in downtown St. Louis."

The St. Louis Health Department will move its offices into the rest of the building.

The city is leasing two parking lots to the federal government to pay for part of the cost.

The building had been named for L. Douglas Abram, an FBI agent who died in the line of duty in 1990.

Homeless advocate Reverend Larry Rice had wanted to use the building for a shelter. But the government denied his request, and Rice gave up his appeals.

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