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ST. LOUIS, MO (KTVI) – The days of the historic St. Bridget of Erin Church at the 1100 block of North Jefferson are numbered.

Demolition has started on the old Irish church that`s been in place since 1859. According to our partners at the Post-Dispatch, the owner De La Salle Incorporated is spending over $240,000 to tear the church down to make room for a new middle school.

Those who want the building to stay say the 5th ward where the church stands should get a preservation review. However, the City of St. Louis says aldermen make the call on participation of the review and the 5th ward is not in that group. Alex Ihnen with says the city can lose its history.

‘We absolutely need citywide preservation review, there needs to be a high bar for a structure like this that`s been around for 160 years. This is not just our history it’s our future. One thing that is our buildings and history and if we start losing that we become bland like a lot of other cities.’

Historians from the Landmarks Association of St. Louis say the church is one of the top 5 oldest churches in the city.

FOX 2 contacted De La Salle Schools and are waiting to hear back. 5th ward Alderman Tammika Hubbard says the decision to opt out in her ward was made before she took office and she`s planning to review the current preservation process.