Placeography:Featured place/2012-07

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Blair Flats, 165 Western Avenue, Saint Paul, Minnesota

The Blair Flats, a massive stone landmark occupying the southwest corner of the Selby and Western Avenue intersection, have been a fixture of the Cathedral Hill neighborhood for more than a century. Built in 1887 at a cost of $300,000, the building was commissioned by Frank P. Blair, secretary of the St. Paul Improvement Company, as an apartment building with storefronts on the first floor. It was designed by local builders Hermann Kretz and William H. Thomas in the High Victorian or Queen Anne style of many of the elegant homes that still dot the surrounding Summit Avenue neighborhood.

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