Developer still needs to buy Immaculate Conception property from archdiocese; project not a deal “by any stretch of the imagination”


When real estate developer Chad Hartle gave a presentation to the Maplewood city council about a proposed senior housing project on the Immaculate Conception grounds on Feb. 27 one step was left out — he still needs to but the property, he said Tuesday in a phone call.

Representatives of Catholic Charities and Cardinal Ritter gave their support for a senior housing project in the meeting, but the property is owned by the St. Louis Archdiocese, and Hartle would still need to buy it. He said in the call that there is potential, but “it’s not set in stone.”

The last Mass given at Immaculate Conception on Feb. 10.

He called his presentation to the Maplewood council a very preliminary look. “It was really premature for announcing in public,” he said.

Hartle said he’s been working with Maplewood Mayor Nikylan Knapper for two and a half years on a senior housing project, looking at several properties as possibilities. He said there is a potential to purchase the Immaculate Conception property from the archdiocese, calling it the best candidate.

“I probably shouldn’t have brought up the property because it’s still in the concept stage,” he said. “It’s not a done deal by any stretch of the imagination,” he said. He added that it’s a 20 percent chance it will ever happen, all things considered.

The archdiocese’ building and real estate department hasn’t immediately returned phone messages.



  1. The cart is so far out in front of the horse can’t see the horse. There needs to be a master plan for the property, one that includes the future of the Church, a guaranteed future which is going to be very expensive to maintain, same with all of the other buildings. We don’t need another Kmart and I don’t believe we need more apartments. Maplewood is loaded with them, including on the north and south side of the Church property. Richmond Heights sold the school that was on Boland Avenue and the developer bought the adjacent Church property to the south on the corner of Dale and Boland. A large, high end apartment complex was built there and opened approx. 2 years ago. It took approx. 10 years from the concept to completion. I would be putting out Requests for Proposals from all potential developers, not a deal cooked in city hall. First step, talk to the archdiocese. They have countless properties in the region to dispose of. I would expect them to be putting them out for bid one by one.
    Don’t forget all of the other organizations that are currently using the IC facilities, where do they go?

  2. I’m relieved that the project is further away than the council meeting made it seem. It might be a wonderful opportunity for Maplewood, but it felt like there was no time to determine if that was the case or not and the total disregard for the questions of the public was concerning to say the least!!


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