Downtown has long served as the place that brings everyone together. It is the economic, cultural, and civic core of the St. Louis region - a center for sports, celebrations, music & culture, as well as a center for civic celebrations and protests. It is home to approximately 75,000 jobs and remains the heart of the St. Louis Region. The Downtown population has doubled since the last plan for Downtown was completed over 20 years ago and there is a growing number of major Downtown investments including a new aquarium, a major league soccer stadium and new housing around Ballpark Village.
But Downtown is also deeply disconnected and experiencing the worst of the pandemic's impacts. Too many visitors ask "where are all the people" and a legacy of investments create real physical barriers from one part of Downtown to another.
There are too many inactive streets, parking lots and gaps between stores, restaurants and destinations. Design Downtown evaluates creative ways to connect and focus activity in Downtown.
There are real opportunities to support minority businesses and grow a network of small businesses to diversify Downtown's economy. Businesses should start Downtown and remain Downtown.
In addition, specific actions include: Growing the Downtown neighborhood; reimagining streets, addressing crime and activating spaces with new programming.