Saint Louis Gateway Arch
Jefferson National Expansion Memorial
11 North 4th Street
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Visitors to the Missouri History Museum, through September 26, can view the traveling exhibit of design concepts submitted by the five finalist teams in the competition to connect the Arch with the City of St. Louis and the Mississippi River.
Framing a Modern Masterpiece - Winning Team Introduced at Historical Old Courthouse|
By Bob Moore, SLFP.com
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com), September 24, 2010 - Last December, the National Park Service and St. Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay announced an international design competition to invigorate the park and city areas surrounding one of the world's most iconic monuments, the Gateway Arch in St. Louis.
The City+The Arch+The River 2015 International Design Competition. drew portfolios from 49 lead designers from four continents. In April, the five finalists were selected to begin the critical design process to put forth their vision for the competition. The process included a series of public workshops and a traveling exhibition for public input on the selection of the design.
This week, the Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates (MVVA) Team was announced as the winner of the competition. In a news conference, Friday morning, at the Historic Old Courthouse, landscape architect Michael Van Valkenburgh and several members of his team were onhand to discuss details of the planning phase of the competition.
Landscape architect Michael Van Valkenburgh stated that the project was basically a series of bridges: physical, activity and experiential.
Based in New York, MVVA's portfolio includes the redesign of Pennsylvania Avenue at the White House, the design of Brooklyn Bridge Park and Hudson River Park in New York, Allegheny Riverfront Park in Pittsburgh, and the 300+ares of the Lower Don Lands on Toronto's waterfront.
In his remarks, Van Valkenburgh described their vision for the redesigned park as a "centerpiece of civic culture, an engine of regional economic growth, a showcase for sustainable ecological restoration and a celebration of the national significance of this historic place."
Team members include: Gullivar Shepard, a graduate of Washington School of Architecture, will be Project Manager; Elizabeth K. Meyer, a professor at the University of Virginia and one of the foremost American landscape theorists and historian; John Alschuler, of HR&A Advisors, has pioneered innovative phasing and financing schemes for large-scale urban projects including the High Line and Brooklyn Bridge Park in New York; and Ken Greenberg, Greenberg Consultants, whose work includes the Lower
Don Lands in Toronto, the Anacostia Waterfront in Washington, D.C., the Rose Kennedy Greenway in Boston, and master plans for Philadelphia and Detroit; and James Carpenter, James Carpenter Design Associates, who has integrated art and architecture, with a particular focus on light and glass, in projects including 7 World Trade Center in New York and the Lens Ceiling in Phoenix, Arizona.
In an interview with St. Louis Front Page following the conference, Van Valkenburgh highlighted some of the finite details of the design, which will include expanding on architect Eero Saarinen's vision for the East St. Louis Riverfront and the grounds around the Old Cathedral.
"One of the things we are doing to do in the plan that is significant is we are making the Arch grounds completely compliant to the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA)," stated Van Valkenburgh. "There will be a way for people in wheelchairs to enter the grounds at every point of entry. There's nothing more finite than that."
"Certainly another finite consideration is what are we going to do about upgrading the landscaping of the grounds. We imagine that the storm water can be used and that the reflecting ponds can be reimagined to be more ecologically self-sustainable. That's very finite in the scientific meaning of that," he continued.
Van Valkenburgh stated that the team has very particular idea that Cathedral Square should be a place that is a very urban, active place for people to occupy.
Over a 90-day period, the team will work in partnership with the sponsors, the City of St. Louis, the National Park Service and others to further define program requirements; begin developing a design that takes into account the feasibility and practicality of proposed solutions; create a construction
budget and fundraising plan; and define the delivery expectations from now until 2015.
The project will be constructed by Oct. 28, 2015, the 50th anniversary of the completion of the Arch.
Elizabeth Meyer, American landscape historian, said that she will act as an advocate for the historic landscape and extraordinary structure that we know as the Arch grounds. "We are going to be looking hard on how to revitalize the city and at the same time make good on Sarrinen's intention to create a monumental experience."
St. Louis Gateway Arch
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ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com) - The Jefferson National Expansion Memorial Park was established on the banks of the Mississippi River, on December 21, 1935, to commemorate the westward growth of the United States between 1803 and 1890. Cost for the $30 million national monument was shared by the federal government and the City of St. Louis.
The park features the Gateway Arch, designed by architect Eero Saarinen who won the design competition in 1947. The stainless steel structure rises 630 feet high from a 60-foot foundation and spans 630 feet at ground level. Its classic weighted catenary curve sways 1/2" - 1" in 20 mph wind. Construction on the nation's tallest memorial began in 1961 with the "topping out" in 1965 and dedication in 1966.
The floor plan of the Underground Visitor Center follows a circular pattern with galleries depicting a 100-year span of westward expansion and the Tucker Theatre. Additional attractions include two passenger trams to the observation room at the top and the Museum of Westward Expansion.
Visitors to the Gateway Arch can step back in time and savor the past at Levee Mercantile. The 1870s style riverfront general store is located in the Visitor Center beneath the Arch. Many food products selected for Levee Mercantile feature Missouri artisans who use traditional recipes and time-honored production methods.
Monument to the Dream - A documentary film by Charles Guggenheim on the construction of the Arch is shown daily in the Tucker Theatre. Large screen movies are shown on the Arch's Odyssey Theatre's four story high screen featuring a 70 mm projection system and THX Sound.
Summer hours - 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., seven days a week from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day Weekend. Arch trams will run daily starting at 8:30 a.m. and ending at 9:10 p.m. Trams to the top of the Arch leave at least every 10 minutes.
Winter hours - 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., seven days a week from the day after Labor Day, Tuesday, September 9, 2009, until the Saturday of Memorial Day Weekend, May 29, 2010. Arch trams will run daily starting at 9:20 am and ending at 5:10 pm. Trams to the top of the Arch leave at least every 10 minutes.
The Arch is closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day.
Accessibility at Gateway Arch - The Arch lobby and Museum of Westward Expansion are accessible by ramps located throughout the building. The Tucker Theater and Odyssey Theatre are both accessible to visitors using wheelchairs. Wheelchairs are available for loan on a first-come, first-served basis (inquire at information desk). Wheelchairs or strollers are not allowed at the top of the Gateway Arch.
Tram tickets: $10 adults (16 & older); $5 children (3 - 15)
Movie Tickets: $7 adults (16 & older); $2.50 children (3 - 15).
Tram & 1 Movie: $14 adults (16 & older); $7.50 children (3 - 15)
Tram & 2 Movies: $18 adults (16 & older); $10 children (3 - 15)
2 Movies: $11 adults (16 & older); $5 children (3 - 15)
Each adult tram ticket includes a $3.00 National Park entrance fee. For more information or reservations, call 314-982-1410.
St. Louis Historic Old Cathedral
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com) - The St. Louis' historic Old Cathedral, known officially as the Basilica of Saint Louis, King of France, is one of the world's most honored churches. It stands on a tiny plot on the downtown riverfront near the south leg of the Gateway Arch. The original log chapel was dedicated over 200 years ago in 1770.
In 1961, the most important honor ever afforded any American church was handed down by His Holiness, the late Pope John XXIII, who decreed Basilican status upon the church. An intensive rehabilitation program on the appearance of the Old Cathedral was completed in 1963.
Visitors can see the tomb of Bishop Joseph Rosati, builder of the present Old Cathedral building, paintings dating back to the late 1700's and a dramatic series of Arteaga photos at the Old Cathedral Museum. For more information, call 314-231-3250.
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