Kirkbride Buildings Blog

May 22nd, 2012

Saint Vincent’s Affordable Housing

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Check out this news item on the former Saint Vincent’s hospital: Civil War Insane Asylum Turned into Affordable Housing. They muddle the hospital’s history a little—although the asylum was founded in 1858, shortly before the Civil War, the Kirkbide was built between 1873 and 1891, well after the Civil War ended in 1865.

It’s great to see the building put to good use. It’ll probably be around for years to come. One can’t help but wonder why it can happen in Missouri, but not in other states. I’m sure it’s relatively modest size and location in a densely populated area both help.

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Discussion

  1. squad546 May 23, 2012, 2:21 am

    I think one of the reasons this is happening, is the preservation work that has been going on in St. Louis for sometime now. People have been very active about historic preservation in that area, they’ve been proactive vs reactive. On top of that, It’s been in private hands for many years and thus removing the “red-tape” that comes with state-owned property.

  2. Erica May 31, 2012, 1:26 pm

    You could look at Danvers State that kept the facade of the Kirkbride but grew an apartment complex around it. Unfortunately, the new building is pretty crappy, so it doesn’t reflect the awesome design of the Kirkbride or even the concrete, heavy feeling of the old buildings. (The walls, I’m told, are usual apartment walls – paper thin).

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