Some weeks, it seems, there’s more going on than I can possibly empty out of my notebook. This was just such a week.
Let’s start with a bit more on the importance of design. The old Sage space in Deep Deuce has been converted into WSKY, a cigar and whiskey lounge. Brian Winkeler and Phillip Schroeder, the creative team behind the pro-bono makeover of Foodies in MidTown (an incredible contribution to the neighborhood – they turned a neglected old diner back into a real asset the block can be proud of!) did the branding for WSKY.
But the owner of WSKY initially looked at having the sign design done by a sign company – a fairly standard move. This is what would have appeared…
Fortunately for Deep Deuce and WSKY, Brian convinced the owners to let he and Phillip get a shot at it. The sign they designed is now installed, waiting to light up the corner:
Langston University in JFK?
A couple weeks ago I wrote a column about the potential of a Langston University branch opening in the old long vacant Douglass High School in the John F. Kennedy Neighborhood. After speaking to the president of Langston, I wasn’t sure what to make of this deal. But after doing some more digging and talking to involved parties, I’m increasingly convinced this is a real possibility. I’ll try to share more as I can.
Big News for H&8th
It’s crazy to think almost two years have passed since Laura Massenat, owner of Elemental Coffee, launched an outdoor food truck festival at NW 8 and Hudson in MidTown hoping to add some life to the community. It was not a money maker for Laura – simply her way of giving back to the neighborhood. The first market in August, 2011 was raided by a couple dozen city code inspectors, health inspectors and ABLE agents armed with badges and guns.
They first tried to downplay the number of folks who showed up. Unfortunately for them, I showed up in the middle of the chaos and saw the invasion of inspectors and agents with my own eyes. After some open records requests and other inquiries, the city, county and ABLE all agreed to review their actions and work with food truck operators to come up with some reforms. Anyone who hoped to see major reforms were ultimately disappointed. But overall, the growth of the city’s food truck scene hasn’t been hurt. And permitting was established to allow H&8th to be revived in September, 2011. The response was great, and the few food trucks that showed up enjoyed traveling home with empty coolers and full cash registers.
Fast forward to 2013. Laura is now an Oklahoma City School Board member and Elemental is thriving as MidTown is becoming a great mixed use neighborhood.
The festivals have continued with bigger and bigger crowds. And this Friday, June 28th, it will be doubled in size and more than a dozen food trucks will be on hand, along with live entertainment and other great amenities thanks to sponsorships provided by Fowler Toyota (gotta love Jonathan Fowler getting increasingly involved with downtown OKC).
Visit here for more info: http://h8thokc.com/
Springhill Suites in Deep Deuce
When I first broke news last year about a Springhill Suites being built at NE 1 and Russell Perry in Deep Deuce, Bricktown Water Taxi operator Chad Huntington told me about the Springhill Suites in Denver as shown in the above photo. As we now know, Atul Patel, and Edmond surgeon and sururban limited service hotel developer, has submitted designs that are seen as far less ambitious.
We’ve seen hotel designers tell the design committees in the past that their designs are dictated by the flag. In this case… we know other designs are possible.