The Oklahoman's Steve Lackmeyer and Louisville 21C Museum Hotel President Craig Greenberg took questions from readers in today's OKC Central Live Chat about a new museum hotel opening in the old Fred Jones Assembly plant.
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.
What is one thing in Louisville that you wish you could put in Oklahoma City?
STEVE: Without a doubt, it's their extensive intact cast iron facade buildings.
Do you think we will see more streetscaping on Main or Sheridan before or quickly after the hotel opens? Maybe a continuation of the Film Row streetscape down Sheridan?
CRAIG: We hope the city's Project 180 streetscape efforts continue westward to Classen and the new boulevard.
Are there any plans to renovate buildings NW of the Hart building? Seems they would be a good bridge between Film Row and 21c.
STEVE: I think the new 21c Museum Hotel will spur a redevelopment of many of these buildings.
Why did 21C choose Oklahoma City?
CRAIG: We loved this building for many reasons. Not only is it architecturally and historically significant, but we welcome the opportunity to be a catalyst for revitalization on the western edge of Film Row and downtown. Also, we think putting a contemporary art museum, great hotel and restaurant in a former Model T Ford assembly plant is going to be awesome.
What sort of involvement will 21C have with the surrounding neighborhood and city?
CRAIG: We seek to be active in all of our communities. In particular, we work closely with local non-profit arts organizations to provide them with a unique venue for activities such as film screenings, performances and poetry readings. We are excited about the potential collaborations with many local organizations and artists.
Which other planned project in the area are you most excited about as your hotel gets ready to start renovation?
CRAIG: We are very excited about the development of the new park in Core to Shore (south of the Myriad Gardens). In Louisville, we've been fortunate to have a Hargreaves designed riverfront park for over a decade (and it keeps growing). And it has been a tremendous gathering place for downtown activity and public events.
How (un)developed were the areas surrounding the 21C hotels in Louisville and Bentonville when they were first opened, compared to the Fred Jones building and the west edge of downtown OKC?
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