In this meeting we hear from Midtown Community Services and from Vince Parisi on congestion pricing.

Introduction & Meeting Ground Rules (Sarah Kogen) 

Ward Updates (Michael Browning, Alderman, legislative assistant, Katelin)

  • Next development committee mtg: 26th @ 6:30, location at MFH or PCD (TBD)
    • One project at 4100 Manchester
    • 5-story mixed use (apartments and retail on ground floor)
    • Requires demolition of existing 1-story building
      • Formerly Attitudes bar 
  • New infrastructure committee mtg TBD
  • Please use Citizens’ Service Bureau (CSB)

Crime and Safety Report (Officer Walker)

  • Manchester remains a busy/concentrated area for crime.
  • Some suspicious activity in alleys new Tower Grove & Vista
  • One complaint in Chouteau Park was about individuals in the park after hours.
  • Please call 911 or use non-emergency number if you see suspicious activity: 231-1212

Treasurer’s Report (Cammie Lewis, FPSE NA Treasurer)

  • August: 
    • $15.99 for Zoom
    • $2,628.23 for Great Gathering (huge success)
    • $287 in expenses for website
  • Pay dues: Cashapp or straight cash/check.

Neighborhood Updates (Ron Coleman):

  • Can now get Parking permits now via Treasurer’s website ($40)
  • Properties on Kingshighway: Brightside will not review graffiti because buildings are in too dangerous a condition.  The Alderman is working on addressing the buildings.
  • Bulk items are a week behind but will be picked up next week.
  • Question: alley at Norfolk & Swan has gotten worse – put another dumpster out?
    • Answer: dumpster not the problem. The problem is people not properly disposing of trash.  Everyone will have to chip in to help.

Community Updates & News (Sarah Kogen):

  • 2024 Board Elections
    • In October there will be nominations for the board.
    • Can nominate yourself or someone else, must be a dues paying member
    • Please reach out if you have questions about positions and roles.
    • Question: how many hours a week?
      • Answer: varies on role but a couple hours a month.  There are board meetings about once a month that last a few hours.  There are special events such as the Great Gathering, popsicles in the park, and various meetings.
  • FPSE Great Gathering was a big success.
    • Comment: Ceilia the musician was great with the kids. Is she from the neighborhood? 
      • Answer: yes – lives on Chouteau
    • Thank you to sponsors: WashU (food truck), PCD (soda/water), Urban Chestnut (beer), Neighborhood Board (time).
  • 2023 Events 
    • Daffodils Bulbs Planting, Saturday, Oct 14 in Chouteau Park
  • Neighborhood cleanups – every 4th Saturday (next is September 23), Alley cleanup @ Chouteau & Norfolk
  • Join Event Committee 
    • Help plan events, design flyers, coordinate events, draft sponsorship opportunities.
  • Parking Districts: Treasurer Dept launched system in July.

Midtown Community Services (guest speaker):

  • Located @ 1202 S Boyle
  • Been in the neighborhood for 41 years in the same building.
  • Became independent nonprofit 7 years ago (previously part of Catholic Charities).
  • Offer support to families & children through several programs (all ages).
  • Family Pride program for expecting parents: provide case management, workshops, doula services, design based on African American infant & mortality rates.
  • The program started 30 years ago and had a dramatic effect on neighborhood success.
    • Still have problems in other neighborhoods
  • After school and summer school programs
    • Support kids regardless of financial situations.  Intent is to provide the same opportunity for kids regardless of the zip code one is born into. 
  • Midtown Mammas 
    • Events for older community 
  • Men’s Club
    • Anyone can join but it is intended for seniors.
  • Community Garden – moved from Boyle to 4667 Hunt between Newstead Ave & Taylor Ave.
  • Please contact us to get involved with the neighborhood.
    • Tutoring
    • Garden volunteers (meeting Tuesdays and Fridays, maybe weekend in future).  No individual plots, everyone takes care of the entire garden.  Everything is shared between everyone and donated to the Food Bank.
  • Events: 
    • Sep 27, Katie’s Pizzeria in Rockhill 11-10 donating all profits to Midtown.
    • Oct 13, fundraiser at Schlafly in Midtown.
    • Oct 20, Fallfest – pumpkins, Chile, smores, candy 
  • Question: do you still do rent subsidies
    • Answer: no, stopped when split from Catholic Charities
  • Sign up for an email newsletter via website:
  • Sponsorship program started beginning of October (info on website)

Vince Parisi (guest speaker):

  • Research scholarship for Fulbright
  • Topic: Congestion Pricing
  • Singapore is the first in the world to use Congestion Pricing.
  • London created a toll ring.
  • In the United States, 30% of greenhouse gas emissions come from cars.
  • St. Louis is a very suburbanized metro area.
  • New York recently implemented congestion pricing testing (LA is considering it).
  • Comment: in Germany, infrastructure and highways are not set up as destinations, just travel.  It is the opposite in the US and STL.  It would be a great implementation in the US but very difficult.
  • Question: how long does Federal approval take? 
    • Answer: Not sure but took 17 years in NYC
  • Question: have you seen any research on using existing toll roads
    • Answer: this is specifically for cities to reduce congestion and encourage other transit.  There would be an additional charge at a certain time of day.
  • Comment: existing toll roads are for maintenance, but many times there are no options to use toll roads. 

You can download a copy of this meeting’s minutes below.

You can also listen to Septembers meeting below, and wherever you get your podcasts.