Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Munichburg Update: East Dunklin

Hi, folks! It’s been a few weeks since I last showed you how the Munichburg Corner project is coming along. For those of you just joining me, the Munichburg Corner is a sort of monument on the corner of Dunklin and Jefferson streets here in Jefferson City. This intersection was (and still is) the heart of the Munichburg business district.

“Munichburg” was the name given to the German-immigrant community that developed adjacent to Jefferson City, so it has its own historic “downtown” area. Now, of course, it’s all part of Jeff.

In the past year or so, Steve Rollins of Coleman Appliance, and Larry Kolb, a local developer (his signs are everywhere in this town), took on the project of renovating the south side of the 100 block of East Dunklin, where Milo Walz had his furniture store, where the Bassmann Apartments are, and several historic storefronts that used to house shoe stores, dry goods, restaurants, watering holes.

The storefronts are now ready for lease. Like I say, they have done a beautiful job of renovating them. The upper stories of two of the buildings have been completely renovated, too, and now feature very nice loft apartments. A huge, huge difference from the pathetic tenement-squalor that existed there before.

The transformation has been spectacular—far better than anyone who lives in this neighborhood could hope for. We’re now all hoping that this renovation will be a catalyst for more renovation.

Here are some photos of the renovations in progress. At this point, the focus seems to be on the sidewalk and street in front of the buildings.


Looking west, photo taken on May 12, 2009:

Here is the same basic area, photo taken on January 30, 2010:

Same basic view again, this time photographed on April 26, 2010:

Some of the poor old ironwork they exposed as they explored what what left of the original storefronts. This picture was taken May 12, 2009:

Here is what this storefront looks like now, after renovation (April 26, 2010):

The interior of one of the stores, view toward Dunklin (the front windows are boarded up); May 12, 2009:

The same store, photographed through the front window on April 26, 2010. Look how they stripped and finished the posts! Not to mention the entire gut-rehab . . .

I believe this is the front, main entrance to the Bassmann Apartments, taken on May 12, 2009. They had removed the roof structure at this point (they fixed it up and put it back on):

The same entrance, as of April 26, 2010

Here is the first of two sidewalk views, looking east toward the intersection of Dunklin and Madison. This is from May 12, 2009:

Here is the same basic thing, April 26, 2010. Look at the new sidewalks! And those nice new trees! I had almost gotten used to the ugly, stark stumps they'd let stand during the early parts of the renovation process!

Yes, some of the new trees they planted are dogwoods. Not a native Missouri kind, but dogwoods just the same, and a nice homage to our state floral emblem.

Finally, here are two views at the whole section, taken from across the street. This view is from November 27, 2009:

And this view is from April 26, 2010:


The Munichburg Corner, the monument, is a project of the Old Munichburg Association, the neighborhood association formed to honor and protect this historic area. The monument’s constructed out of stones that were salvaged from the old Nilges Grocery, which was razed this past year (for no reason other than that its owners claimed that the property was more salable without the old building on it). (No, I don’t think it’s sold yet.)

Here are a few photos I took recently to show more of what’s cookin’ at the Munichburg Corner. The stonework is pretty much the same as what I showed in my earlier post, but here are some shots that show the electrical box (the corner will be lit) and the fenceposts across the back.

Soon, they’ll be installing the personalized paving stones that people bought as memorials for loved ones, historic businesses and institutions, and to be recognized as donors. I’ll be getting you pictures of that when it happens.

No comments: