Downtown streets closed due to crumbling Cupples building

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KMOV.com

Posted on September 20, 2011 at 11:02 AM

Updated Tuesday, Nov 5 at 9:20 AM

1020 Spruce Street

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(KMOV.com) -- City engineers were forced to close roadways around a historic building in downtown St. Louis after discovering the building has become structurally unsound.

Starting on Tuesday, access to the Cupples 7 building will be restricted as engineers work to fix the structural issues.  The city will close 11th Street from Spruce to Poplar and half a block of Spruce east of 11th Street.

The city routinely inspects the Cupples 7 building, which was built in 1907.  The owner has been cited repeatedly because of its deteriorating condition.  Severe damage to the building's roof has exposed the interior of the building to the elements.

"It's our job to protect our city's residents and visitors from unsafe buildings," said Building Commissioner Frank Oswald.  "Unfortunately, we no longer feel confident in this building's structural integrity."

Oswald added, "To the untrained eye, the building seems stable at the street level, but years of a severely damaged roof have taken a toll on its stability."

Cupples 7 is one of nine Cupples buildings.  It is one of only two Cupples buildings that has not yet been renovated, and is the only Cupples building without a renovation plan in place.

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