Kinloch, Missouri

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Kinloch is a city in St. Louis County, Missouri, United States. The population was 449 at the 2000 census.

Kinloch is the oldest African-American community to be incorporated in the state of Missouri and was home to a vibrant and flourishing black community for much of the 19th and 20th century and is the hometown of California Congresswoman Maxine Waters.

In the 1980s, the City of St. Louis began to buy out property in Kinloch as part of the expansion of Lambert-St. Louis International Airport, dramatically reducing Kinloch's size. Eventually the airport took the vast majority of private homes in Kinloch. Between 1990 and 2000, Kinloch lost more than 75 percent of its population. The social and economic effects of this buyout were disastrous for the community and contributed more than anything else to its present plight.

Kinloch became an increasingly violent and dangerous place to live, infested with drugs and crime. The police department faced numerous investigations and over a 20-year period a number of officers were arrested on corruption charges. Kinloch reached a low point in September 2002 when St. Louis County police chief Ron Battelle directed his department to take control of law enforcement in Kinloch. The city's population had dwindled to 449 and there was talk of disincorporation.

In recent years, there have been efforts to rebuild the city. Faith Beyond Walls,[3] a community service organization, has been instrumental in mobilizing volunteers to assist with these efforts. The county police presence remains, though Kinloch continues to operate its own Kinloch police department and city officials say it is nearly ready to stand on its own.

The City of St. Louis, St. Louis County, Kinloch, Berkeley and Ferguson reached agreement on a redevelopment plan for 600 acres (2.4 km2) of land on the northeast corner of I-70 and I-170, along the eastern edge of the airport. Years ago, this land was part of the airport buyout. The redevelopment will offer office, retail, and industrial space and is expected to create about 12,000 jobs, along with tax revenue to be split among the municipalities. The developers, NorthPark Partners, intend to make improvements in Kinloch and donate a new civic center to Kinloch.


As of the census[1] of 2000, there were 449 people, 157 households, and 116 families residing in the city. The population density was 616.5 people per square mile (237.5/km²). There were 231 housing units at an average density of 317.2/sq mi (122.2/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 1.78% White, 96.44% African American, 0.67% Native American, 0.22% Asian, and 0.89% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.67% of the population.

There were 157 households out of which 37.6% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 14.0% were married couples living together, 50.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 26.1% were non-families. 24.8% of all households were made up of individuals and 8.3% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.86 and the average family size was 3.39.

In the city the population was spread out with 38.3% under the age of 18, 11.1% from 18 to 24, 21.4% from 25 to 44, 20.5% from 45 to 64, and 8.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 26 years. For every 100 females there were 98.7 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 84.7 males.

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