Schumpter In St. Paul

One of the hottest neighborhoods in St. Paul Minnesota is Lowertown.  It has CHS Field for the St. Paul Saints, Mears Park, and is a Mecca to hipsters.  It is also a great example of creative destruction as given by a plaque at Mears Park.  In just over a century and a half it has seen enormous changes.

In 1851 it was known as Baptist Hill.  Both the hill and the Baptists are gone.  The hill went shortly after 1851 while the Baptists took longer.  Of course, it is anyone’s guess if the hill could be eliminated today.  Around the 1880s, Comericialization and impressive buildings came.  Lowertown was commercial.  Some time later, and especially in the Great Depression, commerce drifted away and the and the area stagnated.  Now it has become hot using many of those impressive buildings for residential purposes.  So over a 150 year period Lowertown has had several different personalities.

Sidebar: if you are in Lowertown, make sure you have breakfast at The Buttered Tin.  It is worth the wait.  End Sidebar.

It is not to say that all the changes were wrought by capitalism.  Josh Smith, the 1851 owner, donated the hill to the city and it seems they leveled it.  The city also has had an influence on the rebirth of Lowertown.  Not just citizens but governments can embrace creative destruction.

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