February 3, 2016

by Cathy O'Connor via The Journal Record: February 3, 2016

Projects are in the works and taking shape in the Film Row/west downtown area of Oklahoma City.

Film Row will welcome the grand opening of the 21C Museum Hotel in the historic Fred Jones Manufacturing Building later this year. Once completed, the 21C Museum Hotel will provide 135 rooms, 14,000 square feet of event space and a restaurant with outdoor dining. The hotel will also feature a contemporary art museum component.

January 27, 2016

by Cathy O'Connor via The Journal Record: January 27, 2016

Growth is taking place across Oklahoma City. More retailers, hotel chains and entertainment acts are choosing the city for new locations and bookings. This is thanks in part to the progress the city has made in development and infrastructure.

For instance, one of Oklahoma City’s oldest districts is beginning to outgrow its parking availability. Bricktown offers lodging, restaurants and recreation and continues to grow with apartments and new entertainment venues. This has brought an unprecedented amount of foot and car traffic to the area.

January 20, 2016

by Cathy O'Connor via The Journal Record: January 20, 2016

New development opportunities mean a city is growing and companies are investing in its future.

Oklahoma City recently determined a site for the new convention center and hotel. The center, part of MAPS 3, means more events and conferences will consider Oklahoma City, which in turn contributes greatly to the local economy.

When looking at MAPS 3 developments, sometimes we must consider the need for land acquisition in the case of new buildings to be constructed on a site. When this happens, the Alliance for Economic Development of Oklahoma City and the city of Oklahoma City work together and negotiate with landowners to reach a fair purchase price, mutually agreed upon by both parties. Land acquisition is beneficial to both landowners and developers and ultimately serves Oklahoma City for the better, allowing landowners to invest the money earned from the sale into other land and allowing developers to create new additions to Oklahoma City’s landscape.

Where negotiations for fair market sale cannot be reached, as a last resort, eminent domain may be considered. In some cases, both the landowner and the city will mutually request to move forward with eminent domain procedures as a way to reach a fair market value for the land through court appraisal. Eminent domain may not always have the best reputation, but there have been many times when it has been used with positive results. When applied carefully and responsibly, it can benefit both parties and ensure that the city is making progress in reaching its developmental and economic goals.

Read the full article here in the January 20th edition of The Journal Record.

January 13, 2016

by Cathy O'Connor via The Journal Record: January 13, 2016

Success can be measured by innovation, metrics and goals achieved.

Oklahoma City has climbed up the ranks in many categories as the city has experienced a renaissance of development and its progress gains national recognition.

Oklahoma City and its citizens have gone to great lengths to improve the metropolitan area. In the past five years alone, the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber reports that more than 200 new projects and expansions have come to Oklahoma City. More than 21,000 new jobs have been created, with the average salaries of created jobs at more than $5,000 higher than mean annual wage for the metropolitan statistical area. Fortune magazine also recently ranked Oklahoma City in eighth place among the best cities to find a job.

In October, a survey of more than 15,000 small businesses nationwide showed that Oklahoma City ranked No. 1 among 62 cities. Thumbtack reported that Oklahoma City reached this distinction from participants sharing their views about current and future economic conditions.

Read the full article here in the January 13th edition of The Journal Record.

January 6, 2016

by Cathy O'Connor via The Journal Record: January 6, 2016

More and more companies are making a commitment to Oklahoma City by basing their headquarters or certain corporate divisions in the city. This creates jobs and boosts the economy, producing even more benefits for local residents. These companies’ successes also have a domino effect in encouraging other businesses to come to Oklahoma City.

Boeing is one company making that commitment to Oklahoma City. Their expansion here has introduced new jobs in research and development and expanded infrastructure. The expansion is expected to have a $637.7 million impact in the first four years. Development continues as the 290,000-square-foot research facility near Tinker Air Force Base nears completion, which will result in 800 new jobs. Over the next decade, Boeing plans to bring nearly 1,000 jobs to Oklahoma City, making the company a permanent fixture in Oklahoma City’s economy.

It is in part through discussions and a working partnership with the Alliance for Economic Development that the Boeing expansion is taking place. When the Alliance set out to make Oklahoma City more business friendly, the end goal was to encourage situations like this. The Alliance is an all-in-one resource, creating an efficient way of facilitating negotiations with businesses.

Gov. Mary Fallin has been instrumental in creating this business-friendly climate that the Boeing expansion exemplifies. She approved incentives to assist in Boeing’s move to Oklahoma City, which was a contributing factor in their relocation decision.

Read the full article here in the January 6th edition of The Journal Record.