When Judith Howard purchased the building that would hold her two-week-old bar/live music venue/bistro, Howards in Soulard (2732 S. 13th Street, 314-349-2850), the place was in bad shape. It needed new sewer, gas, electric and water lines. The roof hadn't been updated since the 1888. The building's previous life, as the Hi-Way Bar, had ended six years before -- and seemingly no one had touched the place since.
|Photo by Sarah Fenske|
|Howards' main bar features cozy brick, unique light fixtures and large windows overlooking South 13th Street.|
"This was my fifth restoration in Soulard in the past twenty years," Howard says. "And this was by far the most needy building."
What's amazing, however, isn't just the building's transformation, though the space now includes two light-drenched, brick-lined rooms (one with a handsome bar; the other with a small stage), plus a large patio.
What's amazing is that Howard completed all the work in just six months.
"We had 86 people working on it ... and 48 trips to City Hall for permits," she says proudly. "It's really amazing the way the whole thing came together."More »