Regular readers are referred to an excellent article written by Michael Allen and posted on his blog titled Ecology of Absence. The blog focuses on preservation of the architectural and cultural heritage of St. Louis and on the demolition problem.
The article of interest ( http://ecoabsence.blogspot.com/2009/10/rehab-girls-seek-soulard-demolition.html ) was posted on Oct. 18, 2009 and notes that "Rehab Girls LLC" sought permission from the St. Louis Preservation Board, an arm of the Cultural Resource Office, to demolish 1927-9 S. 10th Street, an old neighborhood structure. The address of Rehab Girls LLC, according to State of Missouri records, is the same address as that of Rothschild Development Ltd, an owner of a large number of rental properties in Soulard, under the name of Rothschild Properties Soulard LLC. Ecology of Absence implied that Rehab Girls LLC was in fact closely linked to Rothschild Development Ltd.
As an aside, it should be noted that Rothschild Properties Soulard LLC does not have a particularly great reputation in Soulard, a reflection of the casual attitude displayed.
One property owner remarked that clean out of newly vacated apartments by Rothschild personnel often completely fills dumpsters, and other tenants, not seeming to know any better, then deposit their trash next to the dumpsters, resulting in a mess. "One time they deposited a recliner in a dumpster," this witness observed. This same person commented that their tenants are frequently noisy, drinking and partying until the police are called, and after, too.
Another property owner actually complained to Rothschild's office about some consistently noisy, disruptive tenants. The response from office personnel was: "It sounds to me that you need to display more neighborliness," which is secret code for "screw you, we really don’t care what our tenants do."
Another manifestation of their casualness is their attitude towards paying their real estate taxes. Rothschild Properties Soulard LLC did not pay 2008 real estate taxes on a number of its properties until sometime after the Dec. 31, 2008 deadline, according to posting dates on the web site of Gregory F. X. Daly, Collector of Revenue. If anybody wants to research this, begin at the Assessor’s Office site at http://stlcin.missouri.org/assessor/lookup.cfm.
Examples of late pays include:
1853 S. 9th (real estate tax payment for 2008 year posted on Collector of Revenue tax site on 10/08/2009),
1851 S. 10th (tax payment posted 10/08/2009),
900 Geyer (tax payment posted 10/08/2009),
1006 Geyer (tax payment posted 12/03/09),
1004 Geyer (tax payment posted 10/08/2009),
1005 Allen (tax payment posted 10/08/1009), etc. In all, as of 10/02/09 there were 22 Rothschild properties in Soulard in arrears. It is believed that all 2008 taxes have been paid by now.
Interestingly, note that real estate taxes on three properties owned by Kraiberg Properties LLC - registered agent: Robert W. Kraiberg, 1832 S. 8th Street - were also paid after the deadline. The tax bills were sent to the same address as that listed for Rothschild Properties Soulard LLC, which implies that Rothschild manages the properties. Examples:
1818 S. 8th (tax payment for 2008 posted on Collector of Revenue tax site on 12/10/2009),
1822 S. 8th (tax payment for 2008 year posted on 12/15/2009),
1824 S. 8th (tax payment for 2008 posted on 12/15/2009).
The Ecology of Absence blog posted the results of the request for the demolition permit in a story titled "Cultural Resources Office Stands Up for House in Soulard" ( http://ecoabsence.blogspot.com/2009/10/cultural-resources-office-stand-up-for.html ). Madame Chouteau certainly hopes that Rothschild, under the cover of Rehab Girls LLC, can do something with the building.