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Pier Property Group Plans Apartment Building at Kingshighway and McPherson

Updated: Mar 19, 2022

The 2-story brick building at the southeast corner of the Kingshighway and McPherson could have a new look if plans by Pier Property Group are approved by the city.

The Clayton-based developer behind Steelcote Square, Woodward Lofts, and the Flats at Dorsett Ridge is planning to add 5 floors to the current Reliance Automotive building at 490 North Kingshighway. The proposed addition will include 120 high-end apartment units while the existing 2-story building would be turned into the development's parking facility. The present-day roof of the current structure will include a pool deck. The new addition will be a "L" shape and will expand the 2-story portion on McPherson.

Adding floors onto a building, and reusing the facade of an existing building, are both rare practices in St. Louis. Only a handful of projects have ever done this with the two most recent being the Moonrise Hotel on the Loop and the 4534 Olive building (the Milton Apartments) just a couple blocks away from this location.

The proposed building will be on the smaller side of new apartment buildings proposed and built in the city in recent years. It will be the second smallest new building built in the Central West End (the smallest is the Euclid). The design of the vertical addition is modern with a mixture of a tan brick and dark gray metal panels. It will be set back slightly from the roofline of the Reliance Automotive building to create outdoor patio spaces. The original 2-story section will feature up lighting to make it stand out at night.

This building will not be the tallest structure on the stretch of Kingshighway from Delmar to Maryland Plaza. Just one block north, the Washington Apartments stand 7-stories in height. Across McPherson, the belltower for what will eventually become a Gospel music museum stands even taller than the 7-story Washington Apartments building.

The project is being designed by Arcturis. Due to rising material costs, and logistical challenges, incentives will be sought. Project costs are estimated at $35 Million. The first stop in the city review process is the Preservation Board, where the project will be reviewed at its March 28th meeting.

The name of the project is "The Flats at Forest Park".

490 North Kingshighway/Reliance Automotive joins Albion West End, the Bridge at Delmar and Euclid, and the Optimist proposal as the newest residential projects in the pipeline for the booming Central West End.

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