Momentum continues for the redevelopment of St. Louis’ Downtown West neighborhood as construction begins for the historic preservation of the Butler Brothers Building. Development Services Group, the building’s developer, today announced the closing of financing for the $130 million adaptive reuse of the former Butler Brothers warehouse, which spans a full city block at 1717 Olive St. between 17th and 18th streets. Previously a thriving hub in the former St. Louis Garment District, the vacant building will be reimagined into a mixed-use facility with 384 fully amenitized apartments, along with coworking offices and restaurant/bar space on the street level.
DSG acquired the 735,000-square-foot building in late 2020 with a vision to totally recreate the warehouse building into a major lifestyle apartment project, as more redevelopment efforts are pursued in the Downtown West neighborhood, including the upcoming $250 million St. Louis CITY SC stadium. The Butler Brothers Building was built in 1906 and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The historic preservation effort will utilize both state and federal historic tax credits for a portion of the capital stack. DSG and the design team will preserve the building’s historical elements, such as its light industrial architecture and distinctive terra cotta detailing.
“This project is a massive undertaking that will offer a major contribution toward the continued activation of Downtown West’s full revitalization,” said Gary Prosterman, president and CEO of DSG. “The team has worked diligently for the past year to not only determine how this iconic structure can best serve the neighborhood, but we were also methodical in assembling the design and financial components to bring that new vision into fruition.”
The project team’s priority for the adaptive reuse was preserving historical aspects and thoughtfully incorporating them further into the other design features and interior throughout the building. Trivers Architecture, the architecture and interior design firm for the project, led the project team in meticulously analyzing the building’s history and the surrounding neighborhood. PARIC Corporation, the general contractor for the project, managed due diligence and construction planning. Other important contributors to the planning and design of the project are Karen Bode Baxter, who served as the historic architectural consultant, and Robert Jacobs of RCJ Consulting, who served as the historic tax credit consultant.
Securing federal and historic state tax credits was critical in order to finance this massive project. Bank of America is the project’s federal historic tax credit investor and senior construction lender, with Meta Real Estate Partners as the junior construction lender. Enhanced Capital and US Bank are the state tax historic credit investors while FirstBank is providing the historic tax credit bridge financing. DSG principals along with Enhanced Capital are providing the balance of the equity that is needed to undertake this important catalytic project.
Residents of the Butler Brothers Building will enjoy an array of amenities, such as indoor parking, a fully-equipped state-of-the-art fitness center with separate areas for yoga and Pilates, a courtyard, a club room, a game room, a golf simulator, a dog spa, a theater room. In addition, there will be multifaceted amenities on the rooftop overlooking the CITY SC stadium that include a swimming pool, outdoor grills, fire pits and space available to a local operator for a rooftop bar. The project includes many design and technology features to accommodate the hybrid work-from home model, such as high-speed gigabit fiber internet, common gathering space on each floor and a co-work space on the ground level. Open floor plans of the apartment units will feature 11-foot ceilings, large windows, exposed brick, space for home offices, kitchens with quartz countertops that include stainless steel appliances, and in-unit washer and dryer sets.