It’s a lovely rendering. Really. I’d love to see this become a reality. But will it?
This rendering, by Humphreys & Co. architects, first appeared on OKC Talk. I did a lot digging into this. Humphreys & Co. told me they have a developer attached to it. The developer, Lou Christensen, declined to return calls. And that’s his choice. He did speak to The Journal Record, and you can read that story here: http://journalrecord.com/2014/03/27/building-hopes-in-bricktown-developer-eyeing-hotel-and-apartment-towers-real-estate/
A couple of things to note: my sources tell me this property has been under contract for more than a year. It was certainly under contract in early 2013. If Christensen had returned my calls, I’d be asking what experience he has with this sort of development. Because from what I’ve researched, he has no similar projects in his portfolio. I’d also like know specifically what other properties he owns in Oklahoma City. When I research Christensen and his company, there is no trace of prior development.
By his own admission, he has no tenants, no hotel anchors. That means these renderings, while impressive, are speculative. He doesn’t say this development will happen. He also talks about flipping some of the sites on the old lumber yard if he completes the transaction.
I invite Mr. Christensen to call back. I’d love to see this rendering become a reality. But for now, I’ll be storing this in a file with another project that had people excited in Bricktown, but for which I had my doubts.