5 Takeaways from the November Network All-Coalition Meeting

1. Upcoming housing developments will bring new residents into the 24:1 community. 

The meeting included an overview of the Community Impact Network’s work to attract new housing opportunities to the footprint, new affordable housing developments from Beyond Housing, and the Housing Authority of St. Louis County‘s project that is expected to bring hundreds of new residents to Wellston. Many of our new neighbors may benefit from engaging with Network members like those we’ve featured in Network meetings throughout 2022. 

2. Wellston’s future is bright. 

The Network’s Director of Data & Analytics Courtney Corman gave a brief presentation, providing context into what’s happening in Wellston now and why it is so exciting. A spirited panel discussion featuring City of Wellston Mayor Nate Griffin and Housing Authority of St. Louis County (HASLC) Executive Director Shannon Koenig and facilitated by the Network’s Chief Executive Officer Winston Calvert highlighted the Housing Authority’s project to bring more than 180 homes online over the next two years.

3. Collaboration is key. 

Local, state, and even national leaders have worked together to revitalize Wellston, and that kind of collaboration is key. But, as Mayor Griffin emphasized, listening to community is the most important piece. Although Wellston is a small community, it contains a diversity of voices who were represented throughout the process of protecting the availability of affordable housing in Wellston. 

4. The 24:1 is the best place in St. Louis for new housing. 

As Calvert explained, the 24:1 area has a tight sense of community and is connected to growing job clusters throughout the region. As more jobs come to area around the 24:1 community, the availability of affordable quality homes will be in even more demand. And, with several Metrolink stops, it is easy for people to get to jobs throughout the region from homes in the 24:1 area.

5. Demolishing vacant buildings is an important first step to attracting new investment.

Mayor Griffin said that he believes demolishing vacant and abandoned buildings is a vital part of building the Wellston of the future. He noted that the demolitions in Wellston “change the DNA of our community” and that having more attractive spaces instead of run-down houses can attract more interest in investing in Wellston. This year, the Network’s sister organization, Equity Homes, focused its demolition and cleanup work on over 50 lots in Wellston.