Today the mayor of St. Louis is offering a Preservation Update that almost convinces the reader that the mayor is a diehard believer in historic preservation.
The catch? This mayor is Francis Slay, and his own blog catches his contradictions. In the past, the Mayor has offered support to: boxes of rocks replacing 19th century houses in Hyde Park, vinyl boxes replacing 19th century houses in Hyde Park, a land use plan that basically condemns all historic buildings east of Broadway (or east of I-70 on the northside) to demolition and a new bridge that will entail demolition of historic warehouses purchased by a speculator looking for a profitable buyout. These are only the items he has mentioned in his blog; other matters from the Century Building's demolition to silence on the matter of St. Aloysius Gonzaga Church suggest that the mayor has a long way to go in learning what historic preservation really looks like.
His support of the local district ordinances is good, though, as is his support for bringing the Lafayette Walk project into compliance with local district codes. But let's don't forget that there is another side to Slay's record.