Laclede Group Narrows HQ Search, All Options Downtown

ST. LOUIS (KMOX) – If there’s anything certain about the Laclede Group’s eventual new headquarters, it’s that the company will remain downtown.

Laclede, which owns the local natural gas utility by the same name and has been on an expansion streak lately, announced last December that it was examining options for new corporate offices, but wished to remain in the City of St. Louis.

Friday, Laclede narrowed the three locations under serious consideration to: its current space at 720 Olive, the tower at 600 Washington Ave. attached to the MX development, and the vacant, architecturally unique GenAmerica building at 700 Market St.

Design firm Arcturis and developer The Koman Group are assisting Laclede in the evaluation process. posted Friday that 700 Market is the choice, but the company says no decisions have been made.

“If another viable option that meets our criteria presented itself to us today, we would consider it as well,” said Jessica Willingham, director of corporate communications for The Laclede Group, in a written statement.

Initial lists of prospective sites also included company-owned property in Midtown, but Willingham told KMOX News,”at this time, our property at Sarah and Forest Park Parkway is a very unlikely option for our headquarters.”

Last week, Mayor Slay’s Chief of Staff Jeff Rainford lent credibility to reports that the Forest Park Parkway property is under consideration by a “major international retailer.”

Willingham said the site, for the moment, “remains an operational facility for Laclede Gas Company.”

Laclede’s current headquarters at 720 Olive is powered by natural gas, and Willingham wrote to KMOX that the company is not far enough along in the process of evaluating the other two properties to know if the company could continue that practice.

More from Michael Calhoun

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