Lead MidTown developer bows out

By Steve Lackmeyer Published: August 9, 2008

/> "They grasped the vision from the beginning,” Banta said. "When you are dealing with properties that have been vacant for 20 to 50 years, you have to take your time to maintain architectural integrity while enhancing it to accommodate today's modern tenants.”

Longtime MidTown observers say Banta's role as lead developer will be missed.

"It's a critical time for MidTown,” said Brett Hamm, president of Downtown Oklahoma City Inc. "It's going to take a strong commitment by the investors to continue the momentum Banta started. It will take a strong developer to take the projects through to completion.”

Major contribution
Marva Ellard, who is developing MidTown's Sieber Hotel, called Banta's contribution to the district "invaluable.”

"I anticipate Mr. Howard and Mr. Clagg will continue the plan they all developed for the area,” Ellard said. "Greg had a lot of enthusiasm and vision for the area, and that will be missed.”

Banta said he too anticipates the development will continue, with the next big push along NW 10 and Robinson where MidTown Renaissance properties include Hadden Hall, the old Hotel Kline and a former Packard dealership. All three buildings are in the middle of renovations.

"There will be noticeable changes in this area with new tenants being announced in the very near future,” Banta said. "People see what is happening in MidTown and they want to be part of it.”