Welcome to Citygarden. This downtown jewel, a generous gift from the Gateway Foundation, is one of the most remarkable gifts ever given in the history of this city.

When we broke ground on the garden in 2008, I called it "a home run for the city a few blocks from the ballpark." Now that this vision has been realized, Citygarden will undoubtedly take its place among the great cultural attractions of St. Louis.

It is also unlike anything else in the United States. The combination of world-class public art with magnificent landscaping in a completely open, accessible downtown setting is simply unique among cultural attractions throughout the country.

Gorgeous plantings selected with the help of the Missouri Botanical Garden, magnificent fountains, beautiful lighting, a glorious café with outdoor seating, and of course, world-class sculpture by internationally-renowned artists all combine to make Citygarden a real civic treasure.

What makes this truly special is that Citygarden is for everybody.

Downtown office workers and our growing downtown residential population now have an inviting public space just around the corner. Cardinals fans have a delightful place to stroll before and after games. Families now have an ideal spot for an afternoon picnic downtown.

Visitors to the Arch and the Old Courthouse have a reason to venture further into downtown, and people from all over the St. Louis metropolitan area have yet another motivation to drive into the Gateway City. And of course, art enthusiasts and other tourists from all over the world have something special to come here to see.

We cannot thank the Gateway Foundation enough for this gift. We asked them to consider developing these two blocks. What they've come up with has exceeded our wildest dreams.

As you may know, we also have plans for the rest of the Gateway Mall. We believe these two blocks are going be the cornerstone for that Mall. And we think this garden is going to set a standard for the Mall's future development that will serve us all very well.

So we've got a lot to look forward to. I think it's fair to say that if we ever needed more evidence that this City is moving forward, we've got it right here.

Thank you for visiting Citygarden. I hope you have a wonderful experience!