The Saint Louis Chess Club announced on October 9th that it is officially expanding its world-class facility in Saint Louis’ Central West End neighborhood. The Saint Louis Chess Campus will now operate in a 20,000-square foot area, encompassing a larger Chess Club and Kingside Diner, adjacent to the existing Saint Louis Chess Club facility at the intersection of Maryland and Euclid Avenues. The expansion will allow the Saint Louis Chess Club to amplify their community efforts and further their commitment to the chess industry.
The expansion and upgraded facility will allow for an entire first floor of classroom space, an expanded area for tournaments, an improved community gathering space, an elevator and other ADA compliant upgrades, as well as revamped state-of-the-art technology to be incorporated throughout the Chess Campus.
“We’ve been a proud resident of the Central West End neighborhood for over a decade and we are excited to offer more to our community with the expansion of our facilities,” said Rex Sinquefield, founder of the Saint Louis Chess Club. “Our hope is this investment continues to solidify Saint Louis as America’s Chess Capital and the preeminent global destination for lovers of the sport.”
Chess culture and overall interest are rapidly growing across the United States this year both regionally and abroad, which is attracting more players and fans to the region, which is one of the driving needs for improving the Saint Louis Chess Club’s facilities. As a result of the increase in viewership and participation of online chess during the pandemic, the expansion will also include an improved video production studio for staff and professional players to live stream from the Saint Louis Chess Club on Twitch.tv, YouTube, and other social media platforms.
“Since opening nearly a decade ago, the Saint Louis Chess Club has been an excellent addition to our vibrant neighborhood,” said Kate Haher, Executive Director of the Central West End Business Community Improvement District. “The Chess Club’s ability to attract locals and international visitors alike make it a win-win for the Central West End, and we are excited to see what the future holds with this expansion.”
The Saint Louis Chess Club is working with a variety of Saint Louis-based firms who have all been long-standing partners of the organization, including HOK (a global design, architecture, engineering, and planning firm), Arcturis (an interior design firm that has grown into a multi-disciplinary studio of architects, graphic designers, interior designers, landscape architects, planners, and strategists), MAC Properties (a property group who builds, renovates and manages great apartments and take pride in caring for our properties and our residents in Chicago, St. Louis, and Kansas City), and RG Ross Construction Co. (a premier general contractor in the Missouri and Illinois construction community). Partners are already underway with construction and blueprints for the expansion.
“With our partner’s specialization in designing buildings and spaces that respond to the needs of people and the environment, they’re all perfect partners for the enrichment of the chess landscape in Saint Louis,” said Tony Rich, Executive Director of the Saint Louis Chess Club.
The expansion grants more opportunity for the Saint Louis Chess Club to host larger community events and tournaments, attracting more chess fans to the city of Saint Louis.
Since 2007, the Saint Louis Chess Club has welcomed more than 6,000 members with over 1,000 active members. Additionally, the scholastic chess program is active in over 60 schools throughout the Saint Louis City and County region and has taught over 70,000 students in the area including SLPS, Ferguson/Florrissant, and Jennings in both in-school and after school programs. Thanks to the expansion, the Saint Louis Chess Club will accommodate more members than ever before and support their growing scholastic chess program by providing dedicated classroom space and expanded event space to host monthly scholastic tournaments, member tournaments, and other regular chess-related events and programs. Ultimately, increasing the number of chess enthusiasts that come to the Saint Louis region.
For more information about the expansion, visit saintlouischessclub.org.