Widgets Magazine
  • Two proposals vie for key downtown parcel

    Two developers have submitted proposals to develop the highly-visible 3.3 acres at NW 4th and E.K. Gaylord in downtown Oklahoma City.

    The Oklahoma City Urban Renewal Authority had previously sought submissions for about half the property, but dissatisfied with the options, the city purchased the adjacent 1.8 acres for $4.4 million in November, then published a new request for proposal for the entire parcel.

    The following is taken directly from the respective submissions.

    Alley's End

    The conceptual theme for Alley’s End Apartments is “sustainable artist development.” The surrounding offices, banks, parking structures and adjacent YMCA are heavily used facilities with high volumes of traffic. Our design will enhance and strengthen the surrounding area through creative site placement of three additional buildings, associated parking, creative new pedestrian zones and plazas, complete with public art. The proposed mixed use structures will be constructed with an appropriate five-story building incorporating a brick and metal panel facade. This concept promotes the pedestrian experience with plazas and urban canyons while incorporating micro-retail, dense residential. This design also features a secure parking garage, adjacent to the railroad tracks. This serves multiple purposes such as relief from traffic congestion, sound buffering, and an extra level of security for the residents and visitors.

    The ground floor is designed to activate E.K. Gaylord Boulevard by strategically placing pedestrian corridors and plazas throughout the development. It will also create a bookend destination for Automobile Alley by becoming Alley’s End. Pedestrian boulevards are located around the envelope of the building while performance plazas, courtyards and micro-retail spaces are within the promenade. Those retail spaces enhance the street level activation and engage the strategically designed artistic performance and exhibition plazas throughout the development. The proposed design allows for ever changing art and performance, thus creating a destination rather than infill.

    This proposal considers a phased construction approach consisting of two phases. Both phases will incorporate a mixed-income approach to housing. Phase 1 will have 168 total apartment units spread over two five-story buildings, and 15,000 SF of ground floor retail. Of these 168 total units, we propose 128 affordable units at or below 60% of AMI. The remaining 40 units would be market rate. Also, included in Phase 1 will be a single parking deck that will have 100 parking spaces. Incorporating this amount of affordable housing allows us to promote affordable rent rates for artists and others in the 60% and below AMI range.

    Phase 2 will include the construction of another five-story building abutting 4th Street. It will incorporate 110 additional units. Phase 2 will also be a mixed-income development, with 70 affordable units and 40 market rate apartments. Additionally, more parking will likely be constructed to accommodate additional site parking needs.

    The phased construction approach is a more conservative development approach that will help to ensure the success of the entire development. This approach allows proper absorption of housing units and retail space before starting on the 2nd phase. It also allows Phase 1 to finish more quickly so as the site is not under construction for an extended period of time.

    To help accomplish the goals of this conceptual project, we have enlisted the assistance of the American Covenant Housing Foundation. This non-profit organization develops and manages low to moderate income housing complexes nationwide. They currently have properties in eight states.

    Rose Rock Development and American Covenant Housing Foundation will work as a JV development group, and will be structured as a non-profit development entity.

    FSB are the architects.


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