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Wednesday, June 14, 2006

More suspicious condo fires on the South Side

Two suspicious fires broke out yesterday morning in Lafayette Square, around the suspicious hour of 5AM.

KSDK's got the story, and a photo.

Both fires were at historic-styled new construction sites. The first was at Vail Place Townhomes at 1425 S. 18th. The second was at Mississippi Place, near the corner of Lafayette and Mississippi.

One wonders if this was done by the same person(s) responsible for the recent condo construction fire on South Grand (just south of Reservoir Park). Both were new South Side construction sites, both happened around the same time of day, and both the fire on Grand and the Vail Place fire were noted as being so hot that they damaged nearby homes, cars, and other objects (often by melting them).

This is disturbing, to put it mildly.

I believe that new development in the city must be responsible if we are to ensure a sustainable future for ourselves, and I am no big fan of endless condo-ization, but shit. Does this arsonist really think that StL is doing so well as a city that it can afford to drive developers out? Redensifying vacant land in our city is generally a good thing. And heck, I'd sure like to see some relatively historically sensitive infill like Mississippi Place going up on the North Side!

And, um, if the arsonist's goal is to stop Lafayette Square from getting really fancy and pricey, I hate to break it to them, but they're a few years late on that one.

Hopefully they'll figure out who did this before it happens again.

(Thanks to Dave Shocklee for the news tip.)

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