Lackmeyer: Thunder, win or lose, doesn't determine downtown Oklahoma City's future

Smaller shops opening along Automobile Alley are probably more typical of downtown retail to come.
by Steve Lackmeyer Published: May 4, 2013

I've been told by several sources that Nichols Hills Plaza is in play — that if Chesapeake isn't actively selling it, there are developers actively trying to buy it. Not hearing the same buzz about Classen Curve, but that's not to say it won't be sold. All of this adds to the uncertainty, but could signal opportunity in the future.

What kind of probability that we'll see a high rise residential project within the next 3 years?

Make it five years and I'll say the odds are very good.

Will a shortened Thunder season have a negative effect on the development of downtown/Bricktown?

So have we all assumed that the Thunder are losing the next two games? Folks, downtown development is far more sophisticated than the team's win-loss record. Downtown was booming when the Thunder won only 23 games. Downtown will be just fine regardless of whether the Thunder get into the finals. Enjoy having a great team, and don't get too spoiled.

Do you know if the downtown transit center on NW 5 will move/integrate with the Santa Fe mass transit depot?

I'm told it won't easily fit in with the Santa Fe depot, though I wouldn't be surprised if there's an effort to move the transit center because its current location is far more valuable as a potential development site.

Any news on new high-end hotels, i.e. four diamond and up?

The only new high-end hotel I see being developed downtown is a conference hotel to be built with the new convention center — and that won't be cheap for the city, which will be asked to participate in its financing.

What are the chances the area above the Velvet Monkey in the Plaza District becomes a viable outdoor gathering space like the one above Rawhide on Automobile Alley?

In the Plaza District, anything is possible. That would be a fun rooftop, wouldn't it?

by Steve Lackmeyer
Business Reporter
Steve Lackmeyer is a reporter and columnist 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 Metropolitan...
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