Luxury Homes Planned For 67 Acres By Grant's Farm

An example of a luxury home, provided by McBride & Son Homes, for the new "Grant's View" proposed for the former Busch family property. (click for larger version)
11/09/2012 - About 90 acres of undeveloped land -- once owned by the Busch family, then sold to make way for a retirement community that never happened -- may now become the location for 124 luxury homes.

McBride & Son Homes has teamed with J.H. Berra to buy 67 of the 90 acres, located across Gravois Road from Grant's Farm. Records show the developers paid $6.25 million for the property, one of the last undeveloped stretches of land in the area.

The development will be called "Grant's View."

The St. Louis County Planning Commission will hold a public hearing on the plan on Monday, Nov. 19, 7 p.m. at the County Government Center, 41 S. Central Ave. in Clayton.

John Eilermann Jr., CEO and Chairman of the Board for McBride & Son Companies, said he expects development of the property to begin in the fall of 2013.

"This is one of the most coveted and beautiful pieces of ground in St. Louis County," Eilermann said. "We are thrilled to be a part of such an exciting development."

Eilermann said the 124 luxury homes will generate about $40 million in home values.

Erickson Retirement Community was the last developer to target the former Busch-family property. Erickson paid $20 million for the land, and planned to break ground in the summer of 2009 on "Grant's Farm Manor." The retirement community was to consist of 1,500 apartments, a building to house assisted living and skilled nursing units, and a large community center.

Grant's Manor was shelved, however, after Erickson Retirement Communities filed for bankruptcy protection. Sovereign Bank foreclosed on the property and McBride and Berra acquired the land from the bank.

Prior to the failed Erickson Retirement Community, the Busch property was the focus of a controversial residential development known as The Villages at Gravois Creek.

McBride & Son and J.H. Berra were again involved, this time with two other partners, in wanting to acquire the property in 2005 to build homes.

A 2007 lawsuit against St. Louis County by neighbors and Grantwood Village played a part in halting that project, which critics argued was overly dense (400-plus homes), prone to flooding and would have increased traffic along Gravois.

Cor Jesu Adds 10 Acres

Cor Jesu Academy announced last week that the all girls, Catholic high school had purchased 10 acres from Sovereign Bank.

Since the school's opening in 1965, Cor Jesu's administration has worked to acquire the adjacent western 16-acre tract, which ends at the Grant's Trail walking path. In May 2008, Cor Jesu purchased six of those acres, and now has all 16.

The new 10-acre campus acquisition will allow Cor Jesu to expand facilities, which may include a new field house, chapel, student commons, theater, additional parking, tennis courts, a running track and other facilities.

"This day has long been anticipated, and we are most grateful to the entire Cor Jesu community for all the prayers, support, encouragement and loyalty to the mission of the school," said Cor Jesu President Sr. Barbara Thomas, ASCJ.

With the purchase, the Cor Jesu campus expands to 29 acres.

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