The Oklahoman's Steve Lackmeyer took questions from readers in today's OKC Central Live Chat. You can join Steve's Q&As on Fridays at 10 a.m. and submit your questions about the happenings in and around downtown Oklahoma City. Read the complete chat transcript here.
When will we hear what the plan is for the Boulevard?
Today is the final day for the public to submit comments to ODOT about the four options. After that, I wouldn't be surprised if it's just a few weeks before an option is chosen.
How long is the Chevy BT Events Center construction supposed to take and when do you think we will see the first live music acts play there?
As I recall, construction wraps up by fall.
What is going to happen with the buildings south of the proposed 21c Museum hotel?
The metal buildings will come down, and the brick buildings will be redeveloped.
Do you think we will hear any news on the First National Center by the end of the summer?
I'd be surprised. This is just such a huge, complicated deal for anyone who attempts it, and financing the asking price, which most locals say is inflated by at least $15 million, is a tough hill to climb.
What is the story on the old First Christian Science building on 1200 N. Robinson? Any development plans for the future that you know of?
The story is it was bought by out-of-state investors who seem to be quite content just letting the building sit empty. The entire area around it is in play.
Is there any talk of adding more restaurants along the river walk in downtown? Seems the river is not being fully taken advantage of?
Riverwalk? I assume you mean the canal. I don't know of any pending new restaurant deals along the canal at this moment.
Any new news on the pending towers? OGE, Main & Hudson, others? Do you think we will hear announcements or see final designs from OGE soon?
We will be hearing an update soon. But as for designs on the OGE Energy Corp. tower, the next thing we will hear is about the architect hired for the job, not the final designs.
What do you think the future holds for Spaghetti Warehouse? Are the out of town owners opening it up to better uses for the upper floors?
I am more encouraged about the future of his building than I have in a long time. I suspect a deal is close to redevelop the upper floors of the property.
Do you believe, or are you aware, of any big game-changers that could affect downtown but they are holding off till the rail-line is nearly finished? It seems some business' want to wait till we're finished with Project 180 and the rail line before they open downtown.
I'd say there are some deals that being held back more due to concerns about the parking situation. As the restructuring of where people park is settled with completion of new garages and garage expansions, we will see some announcements pop in short order.
Any truth to Saturn Grill closing the Midtown location?
Yep. It's gone.
Looking at Google Maps, there are a LOT of empty lots throughout Midtown. How many years before we see Midtown reach consistently dense massing?
Probably five to 10 years.