The Grove and Grand-Bates Are 2018 Great Places, APA Says

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COURTESY OF ED ALLER
  • COURTESY OF ED ALLER

We all love the Grove and South Grand — and now, the American Planning Association has caught on to their awesomeness.

The Missouri chapter of the American Planning Association recently awarded the Grove and the Grand-Bates neighborhood spots on its list of "Great Places in Missouri in 2018." The Great Places in Missouri program, according to a press release, honors streets, neighborhoods and public spaces throughout the state that "demonstrate exceptional character, quality and planning — attributes that enrich communities, facilitate economic growth, and inspire residents and visitors alike."

The Grove was given the Great Street in Missouri award for its growth over the past ten years. Its deliberate planning efforts, large percentage of local businesses, increase in residential development, public art pieces, festivals and more were all pegged as reasons to love the community along Manchester Avenue.

The Grand-Bates neighborhood, meanwhile, received a Great Neighborhood in Missouri award. Bordered by South Grand, Bates Street, 1-55 and Holly Hills Boulevard, it was recognized for its great qualities such as its inclusiveness, community events and volunteers who promote neighborhood identity.



"Grand-Bates touts an impressive diversity in home prices, enabling a true mixed-income community that contributes to building neighbor-to-neighbor relationships and vibrant neighborhood character," the press release reads. "This century-old, brick homed-neighborhood is recognized in the National Register of Historic Places as a remarkable intact historic place."

Heck yes it is!

The two other places to make it in the "Great Places in Missouri in 2018" were Historic C-Street in Springfield, which received a Great Street in Missouri award, and downtown Parkville, Missouri, which received a Great Neighborhood in Missouri award. All four will be recognized at a ceremony in the State Capital Rotunda in Jefferson City on January 31.

“The 2018 Great Places in Missouri awardees reveal the critical role of planning in our communities," Hilary Perkins, AICP, president of APA Missouri said in a statement. "These are vibrant places that carry rich stories and lessons on ways to bring people together, build a sense of community, and form strong relationships between citizens and their city, while driving economic growth and support for local business. We see these places as great examples of what good planning can create. We congratulate the awardees on the fine distinction of being a Great Place in Missouri.”

To bask in all the accolades a little more, you can see the APA's full description of each neighborhood below.

The Grove (St. Louis)
The Grove in St. Louis is the recipient of the Great Street in Missouri award. This section of Manchester Avenue between Kingshighway and Vandeventer, has seen significant growth since 2008 due to the investment of local property owners and the work of the Grove Community Improvement District (CID). This street has benefited from the deliberate planning efforts targeted on fostering an active business, residential, and entertainment community. The Grove has flourished through the collaboration of the planners administering the Grove CID, the Board of Directors, and the Grove’s business and residential community. Both commercial and residential development has contributed to the exciting transformation of The Grove, where 90% of businesses are locally owned and over 25 new businesses have been created in the last five years. Additionally, the Grove has seen the development of hundreds of new residential units. Many of the historic buildings along the street have been rehabilitated with the help of the Missouri State Historic Tax Credit program and now provide mixed-use commercial and residential options. With over 30 public art pieces, community festivals such as Grove Fest, IndiHop, and the World Naked Bike Ride, and a true safe and inviting pedestrian experience, the Grove is an exceptional example of a Great Street in Missouri.


Grand-Bates Neighborhood (St. Louis)
The Grand-Bates Neighborhood in St. Louis is the recipient of the Great Neighborhood in Missouri award. This beautiful, welcoming, and inclusive neighborhood of 1,400 residents is bordered by S. Grand Ave., Bates Street, I-55, and Holly Hills Boulevard. Grand-Bates touts an impressive diversity in home prices, enabling a true mixed-income community that contributes to building neighbor-to-neighbor relationships and vibrant neighborhood character. This century-old, brick homed-neighborhood is recognized in the National Register of Historic Places as a remarkable intact historic place. Planning has played a substantial role in Grand-Bates since the initial design of Bellerive Boulevard, an informally landscaped residential parkway designed by pioneer city planner and landscape architect George Kessler. This was designed as St. Louis’ only recreational driving boulevard. The residents of Grand-Bates take great pride in their neighborhood and regularly host community events such as the monthly Grand-Bates Dinner Club, the annual Bellerive Day garage sale, and neighborhood safety meetings. Volunteers promote neighborhood identity through a community website, social media, branded apparel, and flags. Grand-Bates is a shining example of a thriving neighborhood with preserved planning principles, active and engaged residents, and diverse housing and retail options.