The former Central High School, meanwhile, has 300 parking spaces and was renovated by Southwestern Bell Telephone in 1984 into offices. That renovation won several national design and rehabilitation awards and was one of the first major examples in Oklahoma of historic preservation using tax credits.
One Bell Central
The building's designer, Solomon Andrew Layton, is widely considered to have been one of the state's pioneering architects, and also designed the Skirvin Hilton, the Oklahoma County Courthouse and the Oklahoma State Capitol.
The building was known as One Bell Central until 2005, when it was sold to Oklahoma Farmers Union Mutual Insurance Co. The company listed the property for sale in 2010 after determining it needed less space.
Springer said the support by the tax increment finance review committee was important not just financially, but symbolically as well.
“This basically says the city of Oklahoma City and the larger community support this kind of effort,” Springer said. “And it takes a coalition to make this sort of a move.”