View Full Version : Plaza Court bought for $2.5 million

05-09-2006, 09:30 AM
Midtown 'renaissance': 1920s classic Plaza Court bought for $2.5 million by part of The Banta Companies by Kevan Goff-Parker
The Journal Record

OKLAHOMA CITY - Midtown REHCO LLC has purchased the 1920s Plaza Court at 1100 Classen Dr. for $2.5 million from Cosair-Caughron LLC.

Midtown REHCO is a part of The Banta Companies, which used private funding to buy the two-story, 38,501-square-foot mixed retail and office building. Built in 1927, Plaza Court was once home to the original VZD's restaurant and Crescent Market, in addition to serving as Oklahoma City's first suburban shopping center.

Greg Banta, chairman and chief executive officer of The Banta Companies, said he's had his eye on the property since 1993. The Banta Companies owns about 20 properties in the Midtown area, including the nearby Pasteur Medical Building at 1111 N. Lee Ave.

"There's just no other way to explain it, it's a cool building," Banta said. "I've wanted that building since it was closed in 1993. I've always thought of all the possibilities and with everything going on in the Midtown area, the area is just hot."

Banta said Midtown REHCO stands for Midtown Renaissance, and he believes Plaza Court is "just carrying Heritage Hills further south."

"Plaza Court has a great history and character," he said. "We want to get the perfect mix of retailers because it is a classic place, and we want to continue the tradition of Plaza Court. It will be the jewel of Oklahoma City when we're done and a destination point for the area."

Banta said the area has all the advantages of downtown Oklahoma City and includes free parking. A Subway restaurant is Banta's first tenant through a lease negotiated by Cosair-Caughron LLC, but recent bouts of rainy weather have caused a slight delay in the completion of Plaza Court's sidewalk repair and parking lot overlay work. Despite the delay, Banta predicts the work will be completed in about one week.

"We're going to keep the exterior pretty much intact and do some lighting and additional landscaping," he said. "The building is an extremely well-built structure, and it has 15-foot-high first-floor ceilings for the retail space and 12-foot-high second-floor ceilings for the office space."

With 12 retail bays on the first floor, Banta said space will lease from $12 to $14 a square foot. While the first floor has been divided up previously, walls can be knocked down to accommodate retailers who desire more space. The second floor is wide open.

"It's a significant investment for us, but Plaza Court is a significant asset and is considered the cornerstone of the area," he said.

05-09-2006, 09:36 AM
Yeah I read that last week. Banta bought it. Fortunately it is pretty much already renovated so he won't change it up much if any. I thought he was a good developer in restoring Midtown but lately I've heard mixed opinions about him. Even complaints, etc. from a councilperson and the Midtown Association. I hope he shows us well with his upcoming developments.

05-09-2006, 02:13 PM
That place is key to bringing midtown back, imo. Hopefully his plans go beyond Subway. I'd love to see some unique retailers in there like Blue 7 type stores.

05-09-2006, 03:41 PM
"There's just no other way to explain it, it's a cool building," Banta said. "I've wanted that building since it was closed in 1993."

I love that. He's right. It is a great building. Just a hunch, but I can't help but feel a man who has a passion for the building, like he obviously does, will do great things with it.


The Old Downtown Guy
05-09-2006, 05:10 PM
It will be excellent to see tenants back in Plaza Court. Hope there is a good mix including lots of locals and hopefully some successful businesses that are not mainstream.