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What’s Going On In Old North St. Louis?

Maria Keena
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1415 Benton, St. Louis MO

1415 Benton, St. Louis MO

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ST. LOUIS (KMOX) - Another property owned by developer Paul McKee has burned to the ground, and that has some raising concerns.

“Renovating them, demolishing them, boarding them up — he’ll just let arsonists do the work for him.”

That’s what Preservation Research office director Michael Allen told KMOX News about some 60 vacant properties owned by Paul McKee… the house at 1415 Benton severely damaged an adjacent house under renovation, but owned by someone else.

McKee says he has a plan, but it does not involve renovating the properties, “So that someone else can renovate them and get historic tax credits to renovate them. They have been for sale for some time. If I had my preference, I wish the Old North people could end up getting them.”

Sean Thomas is executive director of Old North Saint Louis Restoration Group, “When we lose too many of these buildings, we lose the character and the opportunity for future development and additional investment in the community.”

The blaze that destroyed McKee’s house on Benton is under investigation.

In the past eight years, McKee has lost eight properties to fire.

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