Tulsa Whirled to demolish downtown building


There are reports that the Tulsa Whirled plans to demolish a historic nine-story building at the northeast corner of 4th and Boulder. Why? For a parking lot of course. Another stinking downtown surface parking lot. I guess the new municipally funded parking lot soon to open two blocks away is too far to walk. Memo to Whirled -- real downtowns are designed for walking, not for park-at-the-door convenience.

Apparently, Whirled staffers have been made aware of the plan to demolish the building, but of course the Whirled hasn't reported on its plan to destroy more of downtown's architectural heritage and urban fabric.

If true, it's one more sign that the Tulsa Whirled really doesn't care about downtown's well-being. There is speculation that the folks running the Whirled don't really care if the arena is successful at revitalizing downtown -- all they need is for the opening of the arena to create enough of a speculative bubble in land prices so they can cash out and move to the suburbs. At that point downtown can go to pot, from that perspective.

The building in question was HQ for the Skelly Oil Company. Three floors were added in 1928 -- the addition was designed by famed architect Bruce Goff.

A downtown that is two-thirds asphalt parking lot is not a real downtown.

In the same vein, I was disappointed to read that TCC has promoted its new president from within. I guess we can expect TCC's slash-and-burn approach to student parking to continue.

UPDATE: Corrected typo -- location is 4th & Boulder.

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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on July 2, 2004 12:52 AM.

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