ST. LOUIS-The city council has approved $40 million in bonds for the Streets of St. Charles mixed-use project. The $385-million, 1.4-million-square-foot development has been in a holding pattern since the economy began its downward slide and it became nearly impossible to secure financing.

The $40 million comes from Neighborhood Improvement Bonds. They are meant to go towards street, sewer and waterline upgrades; and will be enough to jumpstart the project again.

Current plans for the 26-acre Streets of St. Charles include 540 residential units, 250,000 square feet of retail space and roughly 150,000 square feet of office property. The development site, near Interstate 70 and South Fifth Street, is where the former Noah’s Ark restaurant and motel sat.

Peoria, IL-based Cullinan Properties Ltd. Is developing the project. A Cullinan subsidiary, PCM + d, is the lead architect. Locally-based Brinkmann Constructors has been named the general contractor.

Work on the streets and sewer lines will begin immediately. Actual building development is likely to start in the next month or two. Phase one, which includes some retail, residential, office, hotel and entertainment space, is expected to open in 2011, according to the project’s website.

The project will be located near a number of visitor and tourist attractions in the area including the Ameristar Casino, Verizon Wireless Amphitheater, St. Charles Family Arena and the St. Charles Convention Center.

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