Cambridge Heights Hope VI Exterior with Dome in Background

Creating a New, Safe Neighborhood in North City

Cambridge Heights HOPE VI Redevelopment (Cochran Heights)
St. Louis Housing Authority
St. Louis, MO

Located at the northeastern edge of downtown St. Louis, the new Cambridge Heights HOPE VI Redevelopment, formerly known as the Cochran Gardens neighborhood, replaced a derelict 500-unit, housing project that the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) had ordered to be demolished. The new $45 million, three-phase development includes an attractive mixed-income community with a range of amenities. This project links the established surrounding residential neighborhoods together, and serves as a catalyst for further development nearby.

A detailed program and design alternative for the site were developed at a three-day public design charrette attended by residents, civic leaders, social service providers and other key stakeholders. The master plan was developed as part of a successful HOPE VI application submitted in 2003 by KAI on behalf of St. Louis Housing Authority. In addition to winning the HOPE VI award, KAI provided development, architectural, MEP/FP Engineering, construction management and general contracting services throughout each phase.

Phase I included a playground and 20 buildings containing 121 residential units and a management/community facility. Six of the buildings are three-story garden apartments and the remaining buildings are each two-story and contain townhouse units. Phase II included 102 rental units (18 one-bedroom units, 50 two-bedroom units, 23 three-bedroom units, seven four-bedroom units and four five-bedroom units). 72 of the units were designated affordable units. Phase III, the final phase provided 20 homeownership units as well as two playgrounds, a community meeting space, computer center, secure resident parking area and central courtyard. KAI’s building design and street grid gestures to St. Louis’s strong masonry tradition.

Participation by disadvantaged business and individuals was a strong goal of this project, and a portion of the development was constructed by Section 3 businesses and residents – public housing residents and/or low-income citizens who have been certified as such by their local housing authority.


Building Information Modeling, Master Planning, Programming, Preconstruction Services, Construction Administration, Cost Estimating, Sustainable Design, Construction Management, Program Management, Commissioning, Plumbing Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Interior Design, Architecture

The Impact

Revitalizing a community

The new Cambridge Heights development is helping to breathe life back into an area once riddled with old buildings in disrepair. This project represents a reinvestment in public infrastructure, providing a variety of housing needs, parks, playgrounds and community meeting space, and a neighborhood computer center.