Local District

Local Historic District

The Benton Park Neighborhood Association sponsored legislation that would designate Benton Park as a local historic district. The purpose of a local historic district is to give local residents some control over new development and redevelopment by establishing architectural standards for new construction and the rehabilitation of existing structures.

It's Passed into Law!

The ordinance which governs the Benton Park Neighborhood as a local historic district is #67175

Historical Timeline:

A group of eight dedicated people have spent much time and energy writing codes, arguing points of view, scrutinizing details, and presenting updates to the Neighborhood Association on a monthly basis.

Finally on July 5th, 2005 we garnered a unanimous vote from the Benton Park Neighborhood Association members to proceed with the finial rendition and we were presented with a letter of support.

We didn’t stop there. We reached out to every home in Benton Park by placing 3,000 flyers on doors and gates that announced a public meeting to discuss issues regarding the building codes and to dispel misinterpretations and misunderstandings. This meeting was held on September 13th at the Epiphany United Church of Christ. It was very well attended and we received a majority vote to proceed.

We met with the Cultural Resource Board and completed all the detailed requirements to go ahead. This included the write-up of the boundaries, Aldermanic concerns, and mapping out the review process.

By January the codes passed the Planning Commission and the Board of Public Services. At that time, the date of February 27 was set for the Preservation Board public hearing. Again we had to notify the neighborhood of this public meeting and proceeded to publish a notice in the newspaper. Placards were placed on every light post at every intersection in the neighborhood.

Once again a number of our neighbors showed up to voice support or concerns. After hearing all the attendees, the Cultural Resource Board passed our building codes as written.

The building codes have been converted into a Board Bill. This means that they have been written into Ordnance form. It is scheduled to be introduced to the Board of Alderman on April 19th, 2006.

The first presentation was delivered to the Board of Alderman's on Friday, May 5th. There was an article in the St Louis Post about it last Wednesday.

On June 29th, the Board of Aldermen's unanimously passed our building codes into a Local Historic District. Two weeks later, the Mayor signed them into Ordinance.   Success!



Other Neighborhoods Codes:


We found that everyone on the Committee agreed on one thing – PRESERVATION!

Our concentration was given to:

  • The facades, street facing and semi-public exposed sections of buildings
  • Parking of businesses
  • In-fills and new construction
  • Demolition
  • Encouragement in creativity (e.g. paint colors)
  • ADA consideration (as the federal rules only apply to public buildings, not private residences)

What is the need?

Previously, the need for Historical Tax Credits to supplement the profit for rehabbing in our neighborhood forced developers to submit plans for review.

Now, the property values are at a level that they can turn a profit without Historical Tax Credits. Thus bypassing any review. Hence they are doing it on the cheap and shoddy to turn a quick buck.

What the Guidelines will do:

- Primarily affect new construction
- Protect property values.
- Enhance appreciation for the history of our neighborhood.
- Preserve neighborhood character
- Give residents input on new development

What the Guidelines will NOT do:

- Affect your interior.
- Affect your backyard
- Affect your repairs