In 1902, magazine publisher Edward Gardner Lewis needed greater space for his thriving business, then based in downtown St. Louis. He headed west, out Delmar Boulevard a mile past the city line, and bought five acres of open land adjacent to the loop in the trolley tracks that sent the 10D streetcar back downtown. By 1903, Lewis was building a complex that included the Woman's Magazine Building, a five-story octagonal tower with an eight-ton searchlight in its dome. In 1906, University City was incorporated, and Lewis became its first mayor, serving three terms. In 1913, Lewis went west again, this time to found the utopian colony of Atascadero, California. His octagonal dazzler is now University City's City Hall. In 2007, in its first such list, the American Planning Association named the Delmar Loop one of the country's "Great Streets"--it's a long story.
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