Renovation of Last historic brick building in Cortex

When I read about a $44M renovation of the Crescent building in Cortex on Duncan Avenue, it was a relief. This is the final remaining historic building in the shiny new innovation district, so it will be a much needed reminder that you are still in St. Louis with the brick beauties everywhere. The modern buildings in Cortex are handsome and will blend in well; but it’s always nice to have a mix and I’m glad this massive building is finding new life vs. heading to the landfill for more new construction or surface parking lots.

The article that caught my eye was published on NextSTL back in January, 2018.

The building will house affordable lab space for start up companies needing to upgrade or get bigger, so an incubator of sorts.

This is fantastic news in that a nearly 100 year old building has the appeal and structural bones to accommodate cutting edge, modern work spaces and needs.. Also, this means the street along Duncan Avenue will look a little more varied and complete. Can you image if it was demo’d for more parking? It’d be pretty sparse.

 See that red brick beauty down the way? That’s the Crescent Building.

See that red brick beauty down the way? That’s the Crescent Building.

 It matches the height of the neighboring DuPont building immediately to the east.

It matches the height of the neighboring DuPont building immediately to the east.

A trip to the site reveals there is a lot of surface parking lots right now in Cortex. It’s kind of overwhelming actually. Hopefully as time marches on and Cortex continues to grow, some of those holes will be filled up. I trust this development and think they will succeed.

But don’t let the acres of fallow ground and parking lots get you down. This final historic renovation is an important one as this was a St. Louis Post-Dispatch printing plant from the 1930s. It’s good to have reminders of the past to know where we came from.

 Tuck pointing and beautiful windows

Tuck pointing and beautiful windows

A preservation win for our city!

And that ghost sign displaying “Crescent Parts & Equipment Company” is fading. A thorough tuck pointing job is underway as of publishing and the windows are starting to allow light to pour into the interior of this massive building.

 Ghost sign fading

Ghost sign fading

Cortex and its future are yet another reason to be excited about the future of St. Louis.

 An impressive street wall along Duncan looking east

An impressive street wall along Duncan looking east