ST. LOUIS — A new initiative named Block Builders, aimed at tackling violent crime in St. Louis area neighborhoods, launches this morning. This collaborative effort involves the Urban League, the Regional Business Council, major utilities, and the city of St. Louis.

Block Builders targets neighborhoods heavily affected by crime, such as the Wells-Goodfellow area in north city, known for its significant violent crime issues. The program’s initial focus will be on the 5700 block of Theodosia, with efforts expanding to other critical areas in St. Louis City, St. Louis County, and St. Clair County.

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Volunteer crews from utility companies, using equipment typically reserved for maintaining line infrastructure, will work to enhance community safety. Their activities will include removing brush and debris to boost visibility, upgrading lighting, and installing video doorbell cameras for residents.

Organizers emphasize that while law enforcement continues to hold criminals accountable, Block Builders will strive to improve environmental conditions, thereby enhancing the safety and quality of life for local communities. The program will operate bi-monthly and is an extension of the eight-year-old Clean Up, Build Up campaign.

Participating agencies include Spire, Ameren, Missouri American Water, and the City of St. Louis, all coming together to make a tangible impact on community safety through infrastructure improvements.