The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

17 September 2005

Block party

For four decades, there's been a McLain in what is now Bricktown, ever since R. T. McLain ran the old Bunte Candy factory at 1 East Sheridan. There's no more candy, but the three sons of R. T. have been acquiring adjacent properties, and now they own the entire block, BNSF tracks to Oklahoma Avenue, Sheridan to Main. You've probably been there yourself: this block is the home of the Bricktown Brewery and Abuelo's.

And now the McLains have decided that this is the time to cash in, and the entire block is up for auction, with a minimum bid of $8 million and an expected take way beyond that.

The sale effectively spells the end to The Factory, a proposed redevelopment of the Bunte facility and the Sherman Ironworks (on the south side of Main) into mixed residential/retail/restaurant with a parking garage, a plan which went on hold when the McLains' onetime partner backed away.

But I'd like to think that there's a visionary with the resources to pull off something like that, who'll see the sale of the block as exactly the opportunity he was looking for.

Posted at 9:56 AM to City Scene