Commercial and Industrial Development

Strip commercial developed early on principal streets carrying streetcar lines such as Cherokee, Chippewa, Meramec, Gravois, Grand and Jefferson. There are scattered instances of corner commercial at lesser intersections. South Broadway from Arsenal to Meramec has poorly maintained stretches of strip commercial, largely vacant. There is a new shopping center developed on Broadway at Chariton Street, replacing the old work house and a drive-in theater.

Virginia Avenue was the main commercial street in the area south of Meramec, it was an early route through the area, when it was called Stringtown Road. Prominent along here are an old car barn converted into a factory and the old Virginia Theater which is now a church.

Condition of commercial property is spotty on Meramec east of Grand, while that along Grand is fairly well maintained, especially between Gravois and Chippewa where the Sears Roebuck store acts as an economic anchor. The new National supermarket, on the site of old St. Anthony's Hospital, should give its area a well deserved boost. Cherokee Street shopping area maintains its importance, augmented by recent parking lot areas at the rear of stores on the street's north side.

There is very little industrial activity in this area, some small manufacturing enterprises, storage and wholesale firms along South Broadway and other main streets or else home type businesses at the rear of dwellings. Along the river from Arsenal to Mt. Pleasant Street are oil tank farms and other river supported types of industry, such as cement and gravel yards. During the latter part of the nineteenth century, the principal industrial section in this area was along the river, front due to the presence of steamboat landings and the St. Louis and Iron Mountain Railroad which ran along the river's edge. These engendered lumber yards at Gasconade Street and a quarry at Winnebago Street. Herolds' Cherokee Brewery and summer garden were located at Cherokee Street and Ohio Avenue. The large Concordia Lutheran Publishing House was on the corner of Miami and Indiana Avenue.