Construction is set to start in early 2014 on The Metropolitan, a 330-unit, $45 million apartment complex that will be the largest single housing development announced yet for downtown Oklahoma City.
John Gilbert, president of Houston-based Bomasada Group, said that unlike a previous proposal he scrapped two years ago at NW 11 and Broadway, The Metropolitan is financed and will not require any tax increment financing or other public assistance.
When Gilbert contemplated his previous development, it required public financing for both a garage and creation of a railway quiet zone on the nearby BNSF Railway tracks.
Funding for the quiet zone was approved earlier this year, but the site first considered by Bomasada was bought by Oklahoma Contemporary Arts Center, which hopes to move downtown from State Fair Park.
Gilbert, who presented the project Thursday to the Downtown Design Review Committee, said the site for The Metropolitan, NE 6 and Oklahoma Avenue, is the last best remaining site downtown for new housing.
The property is immediately east of Ninth Street, home to a popular mix of restaurants and shops. The southeast corner of the property is home to a pocket park built by the Automobile Alley Association.
“We like this site better,” Gilbert said. “We are within walking distance of Bricktown, Deep Deuce, Automobile Alley and MidTown. We have great access to I-235 and 10th Street. We really have great access to everywhere in the city.”
Gilbert said he plans to formally apply for design committee approval in September, seek a building permit, and start construction in January.
The site isn't without its challenges. The property, which is under sale contract by Pat Garrett to the Bomasada Group, is 962 feet long, stretching between NE 6 and NE 9. The property is bordered by Interstate 235 to the east, and has a billboard with a long-term lease in the middle of the site.
Apartment communities grow
Several large apartment complexes have been built over the past few years downtown, with more either under design or construction. The Metropolitan, with 330 units, is the largest apartment complex announced to date since the downtown housing market got started a decade ago.
We like this site better. We are within walking distance of Bricktown, Deep Deuce, Automobile Alley and MidTown. We have great access to I-235 and 10th Street. We really have great access to everywhere in the city.”
President of Bomasada Group