LaSalle Park is a neighborhood within the City of St. Louis located in the central east region. Known for being a vital fraction of the three-neighborhood Old Frenchtown area (comprised of LaSalle Park, Soulard and Lafayette Square), its bordered by Kosciusko and the neighborhood’s former Frenchtown relatives. Currently the smallest of the Frenchtown trio, LaSalle Park covers no more than 0.21 total square miles and has a population, at the time of the 2010 census, of 1,299 residents. It is represented by one Aldermen sitting in the seventh Ward.
During the mid to late-19th century, LaSalle Park covered more of the northern end of the Frenchtown neighborhood, which was named in tribute to St. Louis’ early French ancestors who built the city’s first country residences and farming estates. Although in hindsight, the area could’ve been best described as “Germantown” due to the influx of German immigrants to the St. Louis area in the 1850s. Many of present-day LaSalle Park’s earliest residents were working-class German families living in one to two story brick houses they themselves built.
LaSalle Park would remain within the Frenchtown district through most of the late 19th century until an overwhelmingly destructive tornado, one of the deadliest to ever strike within St. Louis, tore through Frenchtown. Although some portions were hit to the point on instability, it was during the earliest 20th century that neighborhoods like Soulard and Lafyette Square would rise in development. In 1969, plans were put into place to form a new neighborhood of nearly 137 acres thanks to Ralston Purina, founder of the local animal and pet food Ralston Purina Company, who would merge with Nestlé in 2011 to form Nestlé Purina PetCare. Ralston donated nearly $2 million to obtain a Housing & Urban Development grant and by 1972 federal funds were approved for a complete redevelopment.
The entire neighborhood was placed into the National Register of Historic Places in the spring of 1983.
Residents of LaSalle Park are served by the St. Louis Public School District.
Opened to the public in 1958, Ray Leisure Park is a seven-and-a-half-acre park located near the southern region of the neighborhood. On top of providing a playground for children and basketball and softball fields, the park also houses a community center with an indoor pool and boxing gym.
Tucked away along the western edges of the neighborhood is the 2.61-acre Mestres Park. Not as extensive in amenities as nearby Ray Leisure Park, Mestres Park is comprised of full walking trails and plentiful green trees.
Located in LaSalle Park is the 4 Hands Brewing Company. Famous for their chocolate milk and coffee stouts, the brewery hosts weekly tours and offers pub-food treats.
|Aldermen||Jack Coatar – Ward 7||(314) 622-3287|
|Neighborhood Improvement Specialist||Sandy Colvin – Ward 7|