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Fire breaks out at long-abandoned Carr School in St. Louis

The severity of the fire was not known.
Credit: KSDK
Photo: KSDK

ST. LOUIS — The longevity of a decades-old abandoned school in north St. Louis was met with another obstacle as a fire was reported early Tuesday morning.

Known to many throughout the city, Carr School sits at the intersection of Carr Steet and North 15th Street. Sometime around 12:45 a.m., crews with the St. Louis Fire Department responded to the school to fight flames that were reportedly traveling up and down the midsection of the south end of the building.

5 On Your Side was at the scene as the firefighters were knocking out windows and dropping various items to help put out the fire. The severity of the fire was not known.

According to the website Built St. Louis, Carr School first opened in 1908. Designed by architect William B. Ittner, the school was "noted for its kindergarten space, nestled in the center of the building between its two projecting wings." The school remained a place of education until 1983 when it closed its doors to the public — and it's been slowly rotting away since then.

In 2007, Carr School was referenced as one of the most endangered buildings in the city by the Landmarks Associations of St. Louis. In their original rundown of the school, the noted deterioration of the building was taken into an account; an issue still prevalent 11 years later.

In recent years, several rehabilitation projects have come forward, although none have stabilized or come to fruition. As the Landmark Association of St. Louis said in their 2007 ranking, one of the more notable projects was led by the Carr Square Tenants' Association and hoped to convert the former school into a community center. Those plans, though, were canned and "no others have proved feasible."

The future of the property remains in the air.