Old Courthouse construction becomes an eyesore as project linger - KMOV.com

Old Courthouse construction becomes an eyesore as project lingers

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Images of the Old Courthouse ( Credit: KMOV) Images of the Old Courthouse ( Credit: KMOV)

In five weeks, the Arch is expected to re-open with a newer look but a short distance away the Old Courthouse remains an eyesore.

According to the National Parks Service, the unfinished projects and lingering construction equipment on 4th Street comes down to choosing the right look.

National Parks Service Deputy Superintendent Frank Mares knows visitors to downtown St. Louis are seeing what he’s seen outside his door for the last two years.

"We did mock-ups. That's part of what was in here. Large bits of concrete, glass, steel and showing what the ramps would look like,” Mares said.

Mares said that there two things slowing construction down— a need to redesign ramps and technical difficulties encountered while adjoining moats.

The goal is to add ramps at both entrances, touch-up exhibits and install an elevator.

 "When people saw that, even though it looked good on paper when they saw it against the building, realized it was too jarring or too modern,” Mares said.

Although the work has begun, Mares admits the project was sent back to the drawing board after it appeared ‘too fancy’.

“We compromised and settled on something I don't think anyone would be fooled into thinking it existed in 1862 when the building was done, but it will be sympathetic," said Mares.

The $1.2 million project is scheduled to be completed in the fall.

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