Saint Louis Gateway Arch
Jefferson National Expansion Memorial
11 N. 4th Street
St. Louis, MO 63102
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South Tram Reopens at Gateway Arch
By Betty Moore, SLFP.com
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com), April 19, 2017 - The south leg (Journey to the Top) of the Gateway Arch has reopened to allow visitors an opportunity to ride the tram to the top of the Arch, to view the city and renovated riverfront from the top of the Arch, from 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. The trams for both legs have been closed since November 2016 to replace the motors.
Patti Beck, director of communication for Bi-State, said that today was a "soft opening" and there was limited capacity on the tram. "We wanted to open earlier, but had to push the date back to today. It's still a construction zone with the renovation of the Arch museum and new exhibits. She noted that visitors can purchase tickets on-site at the Old Courthouse and at the Ticket Booth outside the Arch's north leg."
She said they hoped to have the tram on the north leg open mid-May. Tickets will not be available for purchase online until after April 27. The Arch Call Center can also assist with group reservations at (877) 982-1410.
Visitors enjoyed exploring the new North Gateway elevated walkway during opening ceremonies, April 8, commemorating the renovation and reimagining of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial.
Spring Into Your Park Draws Enthusiastic Crowd
"We wanted to say thank you," said Susan Trautman, Chief Executive Director, Great Rivers Greenway, as she presented Saint Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay with a framed print of the new west entry of the museum by James Carpenter Design, along with Eric Moraczewski (left), Executive Director, CityArchRiver Foundation and Mike Ward (right), Superintendent of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial.
Families enjoyed building an "Arch" with blocks, Discovery Map Challenge, lawn games and National Park Service Rangers performing American musical styles during the Spring Into Your Park event at the North Gateway Park near the historic Eads Bridge.
By Betty Moore, SLFP.com
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com), April 8, 2017 - Over 200 years ago, Lewis and Clark set out from this region to explore the West. On Saturday, April 8, that spirit of optimism was shared by local dignitaries, representatives from the National Park Service, Missouri Department of Transportation, Great Rivers Greenway, City of St. Louis, Bi-State Development, Jefferson Nation al Parks Association and CityArchRiver Foundation, who hosted a free community event, 'Spring into Your Park.'
A stiff wind and blue skies welcomed visitors and families, who enjoyed exploring 5 miles of new accessible pedestrian pathways. Young kids enjoyed rolling down the grassy slopes of the Lewis and Clark Explorers' Garden on the 7.5 acres of North Gateway park as others kids ran laughing through the newly renovated landscape on what used to be the North Arch parking garage. Families and friends explored the North Gateway elevated walkway on the east slopes of the park.
Saint Louis Mayor Francis G. Slay acknowledged that he was still awe every time he drove past the Arch. "I've been working downtown for forty-six years and I never take it for granted. It took a lot of people to get to this point," he said during the celebration of a milestone in the CityArchRiver project.
Slay enthusiastically noted that the project to connect downtown to the riverfront was made possible because of the collaboration, determination, hard work and dedication of so many people.
"CityArchRiver is building on the vision and audacity of St. Louisan who came before us who conceived of and who built the Arch. Today, this generation of St. Louisans is connecting the Arch to the city it represents. Once divided from the rest of our city, the entrance to the Arch is now being woven into the fabric of our downtown neighborhood," said Mayor Slay.
The $380 million project has created a seamless park experience from the city to the Mississippi River. On Saturday, families and friends explored the North Gateway elevated walkway on the east slopes of the park, where they could view the slightly flooded riverfront along the Leonor K. Sullivan Boulevard.
Susan Trautman, Chief Executive Director, Great Rivers Greenway, acknowledged that "There's no doubt that the voters of St. Louis City and County made an extraordinary investment in the CityArchRiver project by voting for the passage of Proposition P. We are grateful to them."
Eric Moraczewski, Executive Director, CityArchRiver Foundation spoke about the support of donors to the project. "They told us, don't just build a new park, return the community to the park, return the visitors that were coming from out of town to here," he said pointing to the Arch.
He announced a robust schedule of openings and events still to come this year as part of the CityArchRiver project. The first is the opening of the new Kiener Plaza, Friday, May 19 at 12 pm., followed by a free family-friendly concert and festival, Saturday, May 20. A free Health and Wellness series will be held every Thursday for eighteen weeks at Kiener Plaza with yoga in the mornings and zumba in the evenings. On August 4, 11, 18 and 25, the Blues at the Arch concert series will return in conjunction with the Blues Museum. In October, a new event Arch Bark will be held at the North Gateway park on the Arch grounds. In December, families and visitors will be able to enjoy a return of Winter Fest with skating at the Park Over the Highway near the renovated Luther Ely Smith Square.
Moraczewski said that he hoped people would also consider becoming a'friend of the Gateway Arch' through www.ArchParkFriends.org. Various levels of membership included free parking passes and tram rides, as well as discounts in the gift shop.
"When we talk about the value of this project, today is a great example, tomorrow is even greater," Moraczewski said. He noted that by raising the level of Leonor K Sullivan Boulevard 30 inches as part of the project, 20,000 plus participants in the GO! St. Louis Marathon would not be running through water on the riverfront at the start and finish at the Arch.
The new entrance to the museum and visitor's center is scheduled to open late 2017.
The new North Gateway is 7.5 acres of usuable park space and includes the Lewis and Clark Explorers' Garden for children with an elevated walkway and accessible pathways winding through a diverse mix of newly planted trees.
The Captains' Return statue, by sculptor Harry Weber, depicting the return of the Lewis and Clark expedition was first installed near the Eads Bridge in September of 2006 to mark the 200th anniversary of that event. The 9,000 pound, 22 foot tall sculpture was removed from the riverfront in April 2014 for restoration and reinstalled April 2016 to a new location, just north of the Gateway Arch.
Visitors can use the new Great Rivers Greenway bike trail on the Central Riverfront or take a leisure stroll along the levee on Leonor K Sullivan Boulevard.
The entire riverfront was elevated an average of almost two feet to limit flooding, returning more days of the year back to the community for walking, riding bikes, sightseeing and special events. While the historic elements were preserved, such as the cobblestones lining the levee; new amenities such as benches, bike racks, lights, power outlets and a street-level stage will make the space more inviting for events and programs.
Museum of Westward Expansion Closed for Renovation
A new glass entrance to the Museum of Westward Expansion below the Arch will face the Park Over the Highway and the Old Courthouse. Conceptual image courtesy CityArchRiver 2015
Visitors will be able to enter the new west entrance without a single stair step or ramp and enjoy sweeping view of the Old Courthouse and St. Louis through the sweeping wall of glass. Conceptual image courtesy CityArchRiver 2015
ST. LOUIS, MO, (SLFP.com) - The Museum of Westward Expansion, located below the Gateway Arch, has been closed to make way for entirely new museum exhibits and visitor experience in association with the CityArchRiver 2015 project.
The Gateway Arch will remain open and will continue to offer Journey to the Top tram rides during this time; however, due to the limited capacity of the entire Gateway Arch facility, a timed ticket is required to enter the Arch. Journey to the Top tram ride tickets or Arch Entry-Only tickets can be purchased in person at the Old Courthouse or online at ticketsforthearch.com.
Other operational changes:
"After nearly 40 years, it's time to say goodbye to the Museum of Westward Expansion," said Ann Honious, Chief, Museum Services and Interpretation, Jefferson National Expansion Memorial. "Although we are losing a St. Louis gem, we look forward to bringing visitors into the 21st century, and are committed to continuing to tell the stories of westward expansion and the Gateway Arch in modern, engaging and compelling ways."
- The Old Courthouse will serve as the Ticketing and Visitor Center for the Gateway Arch during construction.
- A Journey to the Top ticket will include a tram ride as well as the award-winning documentary Monument to the Dream (based on availability). For guests not wanting a tram ride, the Arch Entry-Only ticket will allow access into the Arch facility and admission to Monument to the Dream.
- During the winter, the Old Courthouse is open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; the Arch is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. During the summer (Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day), Old Courthouse is open from 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m.; the Arch is open from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.
The new interactive museum exhibits, designed by Haley Sharpe Design, will focus on six thematic areas, including colonial St. Louis, Jefferson's vision, the St. Louis Riverfront, Manifest Destiny, new frontiers, and the design and construction of the Gateway Arch.
The Arch and museum will also receive a new westward-facing entrance. During construction, the Old Courthouse will host new temporary exhibit galleries developed from those in the Museum of Westward Expansion. The first of these galleries will open in late spring 2015.
Anticipated work also will begin on the fifth phase with the renovation of the Museum of Westward Expansion and Visitor Center.
This proposed project includes a new accessible west entrance and 45,183 square foot, concrete, glass, and stainless steel, multi-level addition to the existing 103,546 square foot facility beneath the Gateway Arch.
The new main entrance will be located to the west side of the existing underground museum, facing the Old Courthouse and the new Park over Highway to the west. The new upper level Lobby includes security screening, information, ticketing, a public gathering area, restrooms and circulation areas.
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. The Arch weighs 17,246 tons. Nine hundred tons of stainless steel was used to build the Arch, more than any other project in history. Construction on the nation's tallest memorial, built at a cost of $13 million began February 12, 1963 with the "topping out" on October 28, 1965. It was dedicated in 1966.
Visitors to the CityArchRiver 2015 project website can view archived progress and time-lapse videos of construction: www.cityarchriver.org/construction/webcam/
Basilica of St. Louis King of France (Old Cathedral)
The nearly 180-year-old Basilica of St. Louis King of France, known fondly as the "Old Cathedral", is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
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.
The structure of the Old Cathedral, completed in the autumn of 1834, is a prominent example of Greek Revival architecture in the United States, and it is included on the National Register of Historic Places. The exterior stone facade and the four columns that support the Doric style portico are carved from Joliet stone, mined near Joliet, Ill.
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. The Old Cathredal is located at 209 Walnut Street, St. Louis, Missouri 63102. For more information, call 314-231-3250.
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