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First National Center up for sale

First National Center is up for sale with brokers urging potential buyers to look at it as a redevelopment opportunity.
by Steve Lackmeyer Modified: March 27, 2014 at 8:00 pm •  Published: March 26, 2014

First National Center is up for sale with brokers urging potential buyers to look at it as a redevelopment opportunity.

The sale was posted this week by the Oklahoma City office of CBRE and is being represented by Amy Dunn. The listing does not include an asking price, though a separate office at CBRE appraised the property at $8.5 million during bankruptcy proceedings in 2012.

“We’re getting a really positive response,” Dunn said Wednesday. “It’s definitely a redevelopment play and potential buyers are looking at it for conversion to parking, hotel, residential and office and every combination thereof. Every one of them has a different opinion as to what they would like to see happen.”

First National Center has struggled with occupancy and ownership issues since it lost its last anchor bank tenant, Boatman’s Bank, 22 years ago. The complex, totaling just under 1 million square feet, consists of three buildings built at different times when it was home to one of the state’s largest banks, First National Bank.

First National was declared insolvent in 1985, one of dozens of area banks claimed by the oil bust.

Occupancy at First National Center is down to 26 percent after the loss of one of its biggest tenants, Devon Energy Corp., when the company was able to consolidate all its operations at its new 50-story headquarters at 333 W Sheridan.

Several redevelopment plans have been pitched by local groups in recent years, but were frustrated by purchase rebuttals from out-of-state ownership. The current ownership, Los Angeles-based Neman Brothers, investors and owners of a textile company, acquired the property when prior ownership led by Aaron Yashoufar declared bankruptcy.

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by Steve Lackmeyer
Business Reporter
Steve Lackmeyer is a reporter, columnist and author who started his career at The Oklahoman in 1990. Since then, he has won numerous awards for his coverage, which included the 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building, the city's...
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