Voting for this project creates volunteer and paid opportunities, which will put you involved with art creation on a massive and historic scale. The minimum needed to reach our first phase is $21,000. The Cotton Belt building is on 1st Street between Florida and Dickson - Google Map:https://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msid=216608393491954759080.0004cfe34abb35bdde601&msa=0&ll=38.639568,-90.182961&spn=0.005443,0.005879 The owners of a strategically located and very unique building, the Cotton Belt Rail Depot, are offering its Eastern facade (facing the new Mississippi River bridge) as new and massive welcome sign, front lawn, interactive art installation, and unifying volunteer event. Built in 1911, the Cotton Belt Rail Depot is 750 feet long and 60 feet tall. The facade is nearly 45,000 square feet. Several major public and private redevelopment works are already in progress in North St. Louis, Old North and Near North Riverside neighborhoods. The scale and ambition of the Cotton Belt - Mississippi Mondo Intervention will bring not only international attention to St. Louis, moreover this project will be a catalyst for change in the broader Near North Riverside neighborhood. The Intervention will be a much needed push for the St. Louis Riverfront, fostering geographic, economic and cultural friendship.The Cotton Belt - Mississippi Mondo Intervention project will create these connections. The Creative Exchange Lab - Center for Architecture & Design St. Louis, a nonprofit organization 501(c)3 promoting architecture, design, art & technology as catalyst in strengthening the fabric of our communities and the economic development of our city, will facilitate a design contest for the 750 x 60 ft. icon. The scale and significance has already brought about the attention of local and national respected artists, engineers, architects, and technologist, who are eager to contribute to the project. These experts, working with the project team leaders - Tommy Nagel and Jasmin Aber, will maintain the organization and logistics of the projection into completion.
The site itself, on the Near North Riverfront, is at the midpoint of the St. Louis Metropolitan region's geographic and cultural barriers: East/West and South/North. The building happens to be only a few blocks from the New Mississippi River Bridge. As the bridge nears completion in 2014, it is an understatement that the Cotton Belt - Mississippi Mondo Intervention will be highly visible and make a cultural impact larger than its massive physical scale. Moreover, the Eastward facade, located in the city that is the Gateway to the West, will be a marketing tool second in magnitude only to the Gateway Arch at the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial.
The scale, location, and content of the proposed icon will create an impression and impact larger than its canvas. Undertaking a project of this magnitude requires not only a high volume of paint, a secure scaffolding system and technology to match, but also a team of diverse experts plus 100 to 1,000 volunteers. In this way, the collaborative art project has a huge potential to be a unifying force in our community. School groups, university students, tourists, residents of any neighborhood, homeless residents, veterans, and corporately sponsored groups will make up the massive volunteer and paid labor pool needed, wanted, and included who will be involved in the project. The cost of phase one - to get started - requires roughly $10,000 for scaffolding, lighting, solar panels, and technology and $4,000 for paint, supplies, and volunteer needs: drinks, snacks, and swag. This action – as well as the content of the to-be-determined design – will address the serious, complex problems of a post-industrial city in a creative way in order to be a catalyst for change.
The project aims to reconnects the city back to the river. The proposed new visitor friendly river bank, the completed River Front Trail, a city owned tree nursery, and the Cotton Belt landscape extend the city’s “front lawn” North from the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial park by a mile plus.
To honor the significance of the Cotton Belt - Mississippi Mondo Intervention’s impact, several improvements to the site are underway and proposed to be developed in tandem with the project. In it’s current, undeveloped state, the building will operate as an open air art gallery and event space. These project will ultimately culminate in the development of the Cotton Belt Rail Depot itself as an event, mixed used loft, commercial, residential, and horticultural space.
Solar panels on the roof and facade of the Cotton Belt building power video projections on blank sections of the Cotton Belt building’s facade. A large amount of earth was placed on site in the summer of 2012 creating flat space that will become a lawn. The earth - coincidentally - was excavated from the construction grounds of the new St. Louis Art Museum addition. The essential motive of the Cotton Belt - Mississippi Mondo Intervention is to revitalize an ignored yet stunning, interesting, and exciting pocket of our city in order to create a sustainable, purposeful community space that connects the Near North Riverside’s rich history with its immense potential. As a catalyst for change, the Cotton Belt - Mississippi Mondo Intervention will create connections and attention to foster geographic, economic and cultural friendships, ultimately transforming a neighborhood through grandiose methods for a sustainable future.