Photo Series: St. Louis Highway Blues

Photographer Michael DeFilippo captures the striking, ironic, and often depressing ways in which highways cut apart the urban fabric of St. Louis.

August 31, 2016, 7:00 AM PDT

By Philip Rojc @PhilipRojc


acme401 / Flickr

Sixty years ago, the Interstate Highway System blazed into being, a darling of then-President Eisenhower. Today we can appreciate the curses and the blessings of those mammoth constructions, which enable suburbia but often disable the dense urban areas they pass through. 

This article gives us some striking photos from another 60-year-old. "Photographer Michael DeFilippo has spent the last five months documenting freeways in his city of St. Louis. He completed the series this week, tied to the 60th anniversary, and ahead of his own 60th birthday Friday."

Kate Abbey-Lambertz writes, "DeFilippo's photos aren't filled with decay, nor do they seem particularly grim at first glance. Many feature historic buildings and city landmarks under bright blue skies. But the freeways are still always present, and there are moments of dark humor."

Amid all the disjointed imagery, DeFilippo's photos depict one new development: a highway cap park. "One of these projects is in St. Louis, a park over I-44 that links the Gateway Arch with the rest of downtown. DeFilippo's series ends with a photo of that connector."

See here for DeFilippo's entire photo series.

Saturday, August 27, 2016 in Huffington Post

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