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Showing posts from March, 2012

Downtowner Coming Down

Tulsa's skyline lost another Mid-Century Modern element this week.

Demolition began at the Downtowner Motor Inn this Saturday. The motel at 4th and Cheyenne had been vacant for many years– save for the Coney Island in the ground floor. Oh, it's moving back across the street where it belongs by the way.

It was somewhat surprising to see this boxy example of Sixties roadside Americana coming down after some of the recent developments in Tulsa. The BOK Center has breathed new vigor into the west side of downtown, and two new hotels are currently in the works. Up the street on Boulder Avenue, the Holiday Inn has reopened after teetering close to the edge of seediness for several years. Then just last August the badly neglected Downtowner was one of two buildings featured on a Tulsa Preservation Commission training course on redevelopment tactics for preservation junkies!

Historic Tax Credits: saving more than history

Historic tax credits were in the news again here in Oklahoma. Unfortunately.

After placing a two-year deferral on the payments, state legislators revisited the program again last month with an eye on axing it entirely. This short-sighted approach has left developers in a quandary and projects on hold. Politicians claim they have no "hard evidence" of the benefit these incentives provide. But the proof is all around them.

The Tulsa Foundation for Architecture has compiled a compelling case for historic tax credits. A wide variety of properties across the state have been restored, updated and rescued by virtue of these funds. In Tulsa the benefits are evident on most any weekday evening. See all those people? Yes, there are people downtown after 5:00 pm. A scant ten or fifteen years ago that would have been unusual.

Braniff Exhibit in Palm Springs

Here's a short video we shot in Palm Springs during Modernism Week last year.

One of the highlights in 2011 was a Braniff Airlines exhibit. This intrigued us since Braniff was a "local" airline that started in Oklahoma City, later headquartered in Dallas.

But that didn't interest the crowd in Palm Springs. They were there to see the colorful uniforms and far out paint schemes that Braniff introduced in the Sixties. And a few of those in the crowd came to reminisce.

Modern Choices