Chouteau Greenway Master Plan

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In May 2018, the Chouteau Greenway Design Competition jury selected the STOSS Landscape Urbanism team, comprised of six local and six national entities. While their original concept was helpful to showcase their approach and thinking, the jury selected the team, not the plan. This concept will change as the planning process moves forward. Great Rivers Greenway and partners, along with the Stoss team, are working on the Chouteau Greenway in two ways right now:

1) The competition refinement period is a time for the chosen design team to digest all of the great feedback given by partners, technical advisors, community members and the jury, working with partners to evolve their original concept.

2) The partners are also building a framework for how to move the project into implementation. This planning process will include community and stakeholder engagement and diversity, equity and inclusion considerations in categories such as:

  • Alignment and route studies
  • Sustainability and ecology plans
  • Design criteria and signature projects
  • Constructability reviews including permitting, utilities
  • Economic opportunity analysis and planning including development, workforce, affordable housing
  • Activation, programming and event strategies
  • Funding and governance options
  • Operations and maintenance models

As we have said throughout this process, we recognize the many challenges facing the St. Louis region. We must address those issues through this project and our process. We do not have all the answers about how that will happen and we look forward to additional partnerships and expertise to guide this work. It’s imperative that the region listens to a wide variety of voices and collaborates so Chouteau Greenway will have a positive, lasting impact and create common ground that communities embrace.

To help ensure that the Chouteau Greenway is representative of the community and welcoming to all visitors, Great Rivers Greenway, with the support of the Whitaker Foundation, has assembled a new Artists of Color Council. Made up of visual, literary and performing artists, this council will provide guidance to design, promote and implement art and engagement opportunities within the Chouteau Greenway corridor.

Thank you for your guidance thus far and we look forward to engaging in further conversations as the project evolves!

Design Competition for Chouteau Greenway

Meet the teams:

Review the process to date:

  • September 2017 – Began community engagement to understand the wants and needs of residents. From digital outreach to neighborhood meetings, a listening tour to pop up events, mailings and more, 2,062 people contributed ideas through the survey, plus a Community Advisory Committee was formed to help create a set of community goals for the design teams to follow.
  • November 2017 – Great Rivers Greenway and partners received a total of 19 team qualifications submittals for the first stage of the competition. A total of 124 firms from seven countries and 13 U.S. states made up the team submissions, with 44 of the firms being local to the St. Louis region. Learn more about the chosen teams here.
  • November 2017 – The jury selected 4 of the 19 teams to advance. Recap here.
  • January 2018 – Two community events kicked off the competition for the four teams. Read more, watch video, see photos.
  • January 2018 – The design teams got a full briefing and were officially challenged to come up with ideas to address the geography below in the context of the Design and Community Goals.
  • April 2018 – Meet the concepts that were submitted: exhibit boards, full design reports People gave feedback online, through exhibits all over town and attended or watched the livestream of the presentations from the teams to the jury.
  • April 2018 – The jury deliberated and selected the Stoss Landscape Urbanism team, made up of 12 entities (6 local to St. Louis, 6 national). Read the full press release AND their jury report!

Where will this greenway go?

We don’t know yet! Partners studied existing plans and those in the works, gathered feedback from the community about where they want to go, and created a comprehensive map. We believe strongly in partnership and making sure our work is done within the context of everything else going on in a project area. This diagram, called an armature, shows some of the possible routes where the greenway may go. A more refined concept is being developed now that a team is on board. 

Plans incorporated into this armature are drawn from all kinds of data. Click here for some examples. Learn more about some of the pieces shown on the diagram above:

Current Status

Boyle Avenue to Sarah Avenue
The St. Louis region was awarded a $10.3 million US Department of Transportation TIGER grant (Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery) to construct a new MetroLink light rail station along with the first segment of Chouteau Greenway so employees and visitors can walk or ride bikes to connect with the Cortex Innovation Community. Construction began in June 2017 and the station and greenway are now open!

History of the Chouteau Greenway Project

Early concepts for Chouteau Greenway predate the formation of Great Rivers Greenway. Plans for Chouteau Lake on the southern edge of Downtown St. Louis began taking shape in 1999, under the visionary leadership of McCormack Baron Salazar (MBS). Subsequently, the Chouteau Lake & Greenway Initiative was founded in the early 2000s and MBS engaged the HOK Planning Group, URS, ABNA, Bryan Cave LLP, Development Strategies, Great Rivers Greenway and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to develop the Chouteau Lake & Greenway Master Plan.

The team’s major green infrastructure Master Plan was conceived to connect parks and public spaces via a system of urban lakes, wetlands and trails through the St. Louis urban core. It was designed to provide recreational access and transportation alternatives for regional residents, stormwater mitigation, brownfield remediation, and to stimulate private development of adjacent land, neighborhoods, and commercial zones. The Chouteau Lake & Greenway Master Plan sought to link the emerging St. Louis regional greenways system with environmental restoration and the economic revitalization of the City’s central corridor.

A coalition of civic leaders in Missouri and Illinois, including elected officials, institutional leaders, philanthropists and others joined to support the creation of a national model for 21st century urban revitalization and environmental impact. Corporate sponsors and institutions including AT&T, Civic Progress Downtown Now, A. G. Edwards, Edward Jones, Nestle‐Purina, Regional Chamber and Growth Association, Washington University, Saint Louis University, Sigma‐Aldrich, the James S. McDonnell Foundation and the William T. Kemper Foundation, made significant financial contributions to underwrite the transformative initiative.

Now, leveraging the vision, research and diligence of that original effort, civic leaders from the region are excited to take that plan to the next level through the Chouteau Greenway Design Competition. Stay tuned for updates by signing up for our monthly email newsletter.