Rue St. Catherine at Jefferson St.
Old Town Florissant, MO
Old Town Florissant, established in 1786, is a small, charming patch of old-fashioned in North St. Louis County. Everything is picturesquely quaint and refreshing, and a stroll down the streets makes one instantly crave hand-squeezed lemonade sipped on a porch swing. So walking upon the sight shown above was pleasantly surprising.
It’s surprising, but not unprecedented to see a quintessential mid-century modern domicile in this neighborhood. The several blocks that are authentically historic are ringed on all four sides by every hallmark of 1950-1960s suburban-boom architecture, and if not for Historic Florissant, Inc. forming in 1969, the whole area would most likely have been covered in ranch houses.
So how did this thoroughly modern place, built in 1955, wind up in the middle of the Currier & Ives print that is Old Town?
It’s Florissant Valley Fire House No. 1! According to the lieutenant who came out to chat, they move into their brand new firehouse on St. Ferdinand Street in about two weeks, and this place goes up for sale. He even said it would convert into a real nice home for someone… someone who’d really, really dig a lot of garage! That, and 6,155 square feet.
From the street, it’s of an unassuming scale that’s respectful of its surroundings. From the air, you get a startling idea of how large this 3-building complex really is, which just makes the ease with which it fits into the site even more artful.
The fireman gave a sales price for this building that was shockingly low, and reacted to my surprise with “Don’t quote me. The realtor knows better.” But just hearing a price that was in the realm of obtainable sets the imagination spinning… a perfect home/work space for someone who restores vintage cars, or an artist who needs a giant studio? A highly flexible home/business space? The possibilities are endless, the location is perfect, and the building is beautiful and in great shape. Here’s hoping it finds another loving owner, soon.