Part 3 of our guest series on the remarkable transformation of a hospital power plant in St. Louis. Last week detailed how the hospital complex modernized over the first half of the 20th century; today's post explores how the second half brought closure and neglect. Read the series to date.
The Power Plant’s windows were missing by 1994.
The closure of Homer G. Phillips Hospital in 1979, along with gradual cutbacks in Saint Louis and Washington University medical student interns, increased the burden on City Hospital. Mayor Vincent C. Schoemehl, Jr. set up an Acute Care Task Force to study the hospital in 1983, strongly hinting that he wanted to see the hospital closed. Frustrated, the task force soon voted themselves out of existence.
That same year, Schoemehl told the Saint Louis Globe-Democrat, "We are shooting for a November 1st  close date. City Hospital is finally so far out of repair that it cannot continue to operate." But others, especially African-American members of the board of aldermen, balked at the idea of shutting down the city’s last public hospital.... Read More →
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Michael R. Allen is the Director of the Preservation Research Office in St. Louis, which he founded in 2009. Recent activities include learning video editing and naming his cat after Oscar Niemeyer.