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  • Cathy O'Connor

skirvin proves to be a worthy investment

If you’ve been to the Skirvin Hilton in recent weeks, you’ve noticed construction and fresh finishes throughout the historic hotel. The Skirvin has been an important investment both publicly and privately, and is arguably Oklahoma City’s most important historic preservation project to date.

The Skirvin opened in 1911 but sat vacant and deteriorating for years after closing in 1988. The city purchased the hotel in July of 2002, and the hotel reopened in February of 2007. The $56.4 million funding plan approved by the City Council in 2006 included a mix of public and private sources. The public investment called for repayment through loan proceeds, ground lease payments based on the success of the hotel and a portion of the proceeds from the future sale of the hotel.

It was expected that lease and interest revenues would be between $2.8 million and $4.7 million by now, but actual revenue exceeded $8 million. The revenue includes $700,000 used to repay a brownfields loan used on the project. The remainder of the revenue has been set aside in the Economic Development Fund of the Oklahoma City Redevelopment Authority for use in funding future redevelopment projects. Along with lease and interest payments, the city has benefited from additional sales tax on hotel activity as well as the state’s match on a portion of the sales tax.

Read the full article at The Journal Record.

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