St. Louis Union Station retail and restaurants

New and changing stores, restaurants, and businesses in the City of St. Louis
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Ceci's has moved into bankers lofts in the old good works space

I went there for lunch today to check everything out. Man, is that place sad?



Whoever is running that mall is delusional.



If it wasn't for the Post Office and other federal buildings in the area, I'm sure the food court would also be empty. It's amazing the number of federal badges you see on people eating.

mophipsi wrote:
Ceci's has moved into bankers lofts in the old good works space




True, but still has two stores left in Union Station. Suspect these will move out as agreements come up for renewal.
lamiaposta wrote:
This is extremely reminiscent of the failures at Northwest Plaza, St Louis Center, Crestwood Plaza etc. And honestly, if Union Station was not a historical attraction, it would probably have completely closed by now.




Yep, that's just what we need in Greater St. Louis- another failed mall. When The Beatles Store finally calls it quits, you know the end must be near. :shock:



I suppose Union Station management believes the mall's presence is somehow an amenity for hotel guests? I don't see how the place could make a worse impression if it closed altogether at this point. While I've questioned the viability of the mall concept there for a very long time now, I never imagined the place would look as bad as it does, and that management would be so indifferent and completely delusional all at once.
lamiaposta wrote:
Over the weekend, 3 more stores closed at St Louis Union Station.

Ceci's Gallery,

Rock On,

The Beatles Store.



Rock On and the Beatles Store left unannounced in the middle of the night.



But according to Union Station management all is well. It is common for stores to come and go in a mall situation. Really? Well at least they got the "go" part right.



And here are a few more that will be leaving soon.

Starbucks

Cioccolato

All Tied Up

EZ Tees



Just a hunch, but Ceci's and Shoes Etc will probably make the mad rush to get out of Union Station.



Also, King Louies Gourmet Popcorn is looking to relocate out of St. Louis Union Station to somewhere in the downtown market.



Every time a store closes every store left has less business.



This is extremely reminiscent of the failures at Northwest Plaza, St Louis Center, Crestwood Plaza etc. And honestly, if Union Station was not a historical attraction, it would probably have completely closed by now.




The ink wasn't even dry on this post and another store closed at St. Louis Union Station.



The Silver Box Boutique - CLOSED



That is now 4 closings for September 2008. "But All Is Well" :roll:

US was doomed to failure becuase it's only draw is/was 'Once the World's Busiest Train Station'. In order for this place to succeed, there needs to be a unique draw.



I'd like to see the owners tear up the parking lot and invite Bob Cassilly to work his magic. They could also allow the Museum of Transport to rotate their locomotive collection as an interactive exhibit.

^Hmm...Bob Cassilly, Museum of Transport, Union Station. Just imagine the possibilities.

:D ^me like :D



that's the best idea I've heard yet

It may be too late but the City should have tried to re-use US as a train station. Why have an Amtrak/MetroBus/MetoLink Hub blocks away from what would have made a perfect location (US)? Come to think of it, most large, rail transport hubs that I've been in (Penn Station, 30th Street Station, Washington Union, Gare de Nord et Austerlitz, Centraal Station, Roma Termini, etc.) all had "malls" located within their terminals. Furthermore, almost EVERY European rail station - small, medium or large - had some semblance of shopping and dining options. US seems like a good fit considering a) the name, b) the location of US to the rail lines and c) the presence of restaurants and shopping.



Yet another sad example of civic leadership "missing the mark".

to quote southslider



The problem is that Union Station is set up for trains to pull into the station, not merely stop along the way. That setup worked when St. Louis was a major rail destination itself, but not now, when we're simply on Amtrak routes from Chicago to KC and Texas, it's not as practical.

If we can't turn it back into a real train station, why not a model train station? My late uncle was a model railroad enthusiast. It's a subculture that some may mock as grown men playing with toys, but is it any sillier than fantasy baseball or football :)



I could see US being a destination for model train enthusiasts from around the country and around the world. I'd love to see Bob Casilly try to make that happen, though I don't know how much interest he has in the hobby.

southsidepride wrote:
If we can't turn it back into a real train station, why not a model train station? My late uncle was a model railroad enthusiast. It's a subculture that some may mock as grown men playing with toys, but is it any sillier than fantasy baseball or football :)



I could see US being a destination for model train enthusiasts from around the country and around the world. I'd love to see Bob Casilly try to make that happen, though I don't know how much interest he has in the hobby.




I wouldn't even call it a subculture. There's million of people doing it around the country.



You could do a massive layout in there. I'm a model railroader myself (call me whatever name you want). My father and my brother and I have a good sized layout in our basement. I don't do it so much for the train aspect as the planning and building aspect. It's my mini simcity that happens to have an active train line, including AMTRAK and a trolley line.

When Union Station was first renovated in the mid '80s, among the original lineup of tenants was a fairly sizeable model railroading store on the ground floor called The Great Train Store, which, IIRC, survived there in some form or other until c. 2000, though towards the end it seemed to be more oriented towards railroad-themed souvenirs than model railroad stuff. In its heyday, the company was quite a St. Louis success story: starting from that single location, they expanded to a nationwide chain of over 50 stores by the late '90s, but I think they all went out of business some years ago.

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Would have been nice had they done this when there were still restaurants left to go to.

^ I was thinking the same thing, especially yesterday when I heard a radio commercial for the free parking promotion. (I can't remember the station, as I was only listening to FM because I left my iPod/CDs at home. I just remember the music was rubbish- but that could be said for almost every radio station these days.)



Anyway, I was quite shocked to hear this commercial. You'd think some of that money would've been better spent sprucing up the joint, or doing something to encourage tenants to stay (and by that I mean something substantial, not just free parking during the weekday lunch rush for one month). Maybe if Union Station's marketing department offered frequent and attractive promotions when there was more stuff actually there, it wouldn't be in the sad shape that it is today.

Heard on KMOX this AM

Starbucks to officially close on Sunday Oct 19, 2008 at St. Louis Union Station.

And once again the rumor has re-surviced that Houlihans will be closing at St. Louis Union Station. As rumors go at Union Station, they normally come true. I have yet to see one not come true.

So I guess the Union Station representative who was whining during Metro meetings about Metro possibly having to cut the free lunchtime ride can just shut it now that he has parking and no restaurants? Ha.

Given the decline, maybe metro should consider closing the station to save a few bucks.

Houlihans is actually a pretty decent restaurant for a chain. Maybe they can be convinced to open elsewhere downtown. It would be a nice lunch option.

^ I agree. It's been many years, but I also remember the Houlihan's that was once in St. Louis Centre.



Hopefully Houlihan's won't completely write downtown off- it's reasonably priced fare, and for a chain, it's actually pretty good.

^

The new one on Hanley is pretty stylish. Nice design, very contemporary. Cool little patio on the side.



A similar restaurant would work well on the ground floor of the Mercantile Library complex (facing Broadway), or on the first floor of the old Woolworth's space in the St. Louis Centre garage.



Or, even in the Dillard's Building!

Houlihans A ok in my book when it comes to chains...and it's almost local...started in KC...

yeah I also like Houlihan's. But are they having troubles overall? I was in Madison, WI last week for work and the one by my hotel had shuttered. It's in a sprawly part of town reminiscent of the Shoppes at Hawk Ridge (or whatever that place in Lake St. Louis is called).