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Office sales increase 'heartbeat' of Oklahoma City

Price Edwards & Co. said 15 office buildings totaling 2.4 million square feet changed hands for a combined $138 million. Several involved redevelopment projects, not just the usual rent return on multitenant investment.
by Richard Mize Published: January 24, 2013

If 2012 office sales in Oklahoma City lacked magnitude, they made up for it in novelty.

Some notable properties changed hands, and reuse and redevelopment were behind the deals, not just investment in income-producing property, according to Price Edwards & Co.

Price Edwards tracked 15 sales of buildings totaling 2,443,000 square feet for a combined $138 million, according to its year-end office market summary. The report, which recorded only buildings 25,000 square feet and larger, is available online at

Going old school

American Farmers & Ranchers Insurance's $10 million sale of the old Central High School, which it occupied since 2005, topped broker Craig Tucker's list for transactions having an impact downtown.

The 103-year-old, 177,000-square-foot building will become the home of the Oklahoma City University School of Law. Returning the space to academic use will bring a different kind of buzz to 800 N Harvey, Tucker said: one that will increase the “heartbeat” of the central business district.

“This conversion from general office space to a use more closely associated with its old Central High School heritage represents an outstanding opportunity for a number of law school students and professors to soon become a part of the downtown and near-downtown community fabric,” Price Edwards said in its year-end office market summary.

Downtown heartbeat

Tucker said another transaction hitting downtown in the heartbeat was the sale of 115,000-square-foot Century Center Mall last May to an investor group led by Steve Hurst.

The nearly vacant property at 100 W Main St. will “see new life” with the relocation of The Oklahoma Publishing Company, publisher of The Oklahoman, from 9000 Broadway Extension next year. OPUBCO plans to occupy 67,000 square feet of the space. The property owners also plan retail and restaurants at street level.

“Century Center Mall is poised to become a vibrant addition to the heart of (downtown),” Price Edwards said in the sales summary compiled by managing partner Ford Price.

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by Richard Mize
Real Estate Editor
Real estate editor Richard Mize has edited The Oklahoman's weekly residential real estate section and covered housing, commercial real estate, construction, development, finance and related business since 1999. From 1989 to 1999, he worked...
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