University City



University City, also commonly known as “U City” is an inner ring suburb of St. Louis that is part of St. Louis County.   The building stock ranges widely in U City from early 20th century brick apartment buildings and mansions to mid century ranch residences and also brick veneer and frame homes on the north side of the area.   Almost all homes has been updated and/or rehabbed with modern 21st century amenities.  Prices range widely with as little as $60,000 for a frame bungalow to $1,000,000 or more for an early 20th century brick mansion on the south side of the area near Clayton and Washington University’s campus.

University City has been home to the wealthy and upper middle class since development began in 1903.  It was a streetcar suburb for that wanted to leave the bustle of the inner city of St. Louis behind.  EG Lewis was the original developer of the area.   He worked as a women’s magazine publisher while promoting both his new real estate development and his magazines.  He named the area “University City” because of its close proximity to Washington University and the two have been forever tied together since.

The association and cooperation with Washington University has allowed the neighborhood to grow and thrive in ways other municipalities in the area can only dream of.  “Wash U” is one of the most respected institutions of higher learning in America and is often mentioned in the same breath as Ivy League schools back east.  It has one of the largest endowments of any university in the United States and U City has often been the benefactor.  Many university faculty call U City home as do the 6,000 or more students that live off campus.  As a result U City is blessed with many young, educated, and energetic residents.  This provides a great balance to the more established and mature population that reside on some U City’s most exclusive and sought after private streets.  U City possesses a more diverse and interesting set of residents than most other areas in St. Louis.

The amenities and attractions available in the neighborhood match the diverse and energetic residents as well.  The greatest asset that U City possesses besides Wash U is almost certainly the “U City Loop”.  The Loop is a vibrant commercial district that stretches from Big Bend on the west to Skinker on the east.  The Loop contains storefront after storefront of different specialy shops, restaurants, and bars as far as the eye can see.  The loop is also a destination for the area movie theater, concert venue, and boutique hotels.

http://www.ucityloop.com/

Just of The Loop to the south is COCA (Center of Creative Arts) which provides classes, camps, and workshops in all of the creative arts.  COCA emphasizes creating and building community through the arts.  Many of COCA’s students and groups are regionally known for their excellence in their chosen artistic medium whether it be dance, drawing, singing etc.

http://www.cocastl.org/

U City’s location is one of its greatest assets.  Its proximity to Wash U has been covered, however its neighbor to the south is the area known as Clayton.  Clayton is the hub for government and business in St. Louis County.  People commute from all over the St. Louis area to Clayton daily for meeting and work.  Many U City residents only have to travel several blocks to be where so many other must sit in gridlock traffic to get to.

The diversity in its housing options is almost as great as the entertainment and cultural options.  There are small bungalows and condos available for those on a budget and stately 3 story mansions on private streets for the most discriminating buyer.  Nearly everything in between is available as well.

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