As St. Louisianaianites may already know, yesterday afternoon something quite exciting happened downtown – the uuuuuuuugly Wash Ave skywalk came down!
As you can see in photos here, that hideous thing was a real blight on Washington Avenue. It transformed nearly a full block of one of St. Louis’s most picturesque streets into a dark, smelly, pigeon shit-filled tunnel. A huge scar on the area, a constant reminder of a ill-thought-out and ill-fated 1980’s-born “urban mall” concept.
I’d sent that bog post linked above to everyone in our small office, and then yesterday afternoon some of us left work a bit early and headed a couple blocks over to Seventh St. to watch the festivities:
(the guy in the middle is – I’m pretty sure – a knitter to be. I have a plan. I’ll tell you about it later.)
The crowd was pretty light at first, but really picked up as it got closer to demolition time.
The downtown grocery was giving out balloons, there were food booths and drinks and a concert stage – it was kind of a big to-do!
Lots of people even brought their kids – I love that; I hope the next generation will pick up on the message of urban renewal and eventually become historic preservation advocates too 😉
Lots of cute goggies too, but I’m not sure they can be advocates of anything.
Well, maybe this one.
He looks important, don’t you think?
After a bunch of blah-blah-blah-ing from the mayor and other Suits in Hard Hats, it was time!
Tear that sucker down!
Of course, St. Louisianitianites love their fireworks!*
The first few wrecking ball swings were symbolic. [Read: swinger had no idea what the hell they were doing.]
You can tell because on the first go, the ball went into the adjacent building rather than the bridge:
(see that new dent, right at wrecking-ball height, above the second green stripe up?)
It took two or three swings before they even broke a pane of glass:
Then just a few strategic taps later, and the whole thing imploded. I didn’t get any pictures because I was running away through raining shards of glass and toothpaste-green cladding.
Naaw, just kidding.
But wouldn’t that have been awesome?
Really, after a few more half-assed attempts at demolition by various city officials, they ended the ceremony and the crowd dispersed.
Good riddance to that eyesore! 🙂
*Seriously – any excuse for fireworks here. Parade ? Fireworks! Grocery store grand opening? Fireworks! Pyromaniacs convention? Fireworks! New burn- and finger amputation-unit on the hospital? Fireworks!