The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

18 August 2003

Where all the lights are bright (2)

Once upon a time, an ill-fated Oklahoma City urban-renewal plan put downtown on two shifts — twelve hours business district, twelve hours mausoleum — and people wondered why. It's no secret, says Linda Stinnett of Oklahoma Main Street Center:

If you want to have a vital downtown, you have to have people living downtown.

Simple as that. And in Oklahoma City, it's actually starting to happen; lofts have been carved out of buildings in Bricktown and along the downtown Automobile Alley, and more are coming. Lofts are in place in Norman and Cordell, and planned for other cities. The supply is coming because the demand is there, and because people have been willing to pay above-average rents for desirable locations. Were I twentysomething and on the party circuit, I probably wouldn't be able to resist the temptation myself.

Posted at 6:34 AM to City Scene

I spent twelve hours per day downtown. Every day. I would say that it's going to take a wee bit more than retro-fitting old buildings into expensive loft apartments. Although I would have loved to have had the money to move in.

But -- it is a start.

(I also couldn't be bribed enough to live in "downtown" Norman. That is just my age speaking, I think.)

Posted by: margi at 5:42 PM on 18 August 2003

It's, I think, a cyclical thing. Right now lofts are incredibly cool. Ten years from now they'll be — well, less incredibly cool.

Posted by: CGHill at 8:57 PM on 18 August 2003