OKLAHOMA CITY – If you’ve been to downtown Oklahoma City recently, you’ve likely seen the changing housing scene in the area.
Andy Burnett is just one of the people developing apartments, condos and other living quarters near the downtown area.
Burnett, who is developing the West Village Apartments on Film Row, says it was an idea that was brought to him by the family of Fred Jones.
“At the time, Mark and I initially said no. We were busy on a bunch of other projects and we just didn’t see their vision for the neighborhood,” Andy Burnett, West Village Developer, said.
However, that soon changed. Now, an entire neighborhood is expected to be finished by the end of the summer.
“The idea with mixed-use development is you’d have everything you need within walking distance and so one of our tenants will have a grocery component where you can buy meats, cheese, bread. Basically anything you need for daily living,” Burnett said.
Currently, there are more than 20 multi-family properties downtown, and at least six more are on the way, according to a list sent to News 4 by Downtown OKC.
They estimate around 8,500 residents live downtown, compared to the 73,000 downtown employees.
Paul Sechrist moved to these brand new condos on N.W. 6th and Hudson last month after spending the last 19 years in Crown Heights.
“My doctor’s downtown. I found out every place I was going on weekends seemed to be downtown, and I was at a point in my life where I wanted to downsize. Wanted sort of a lock and leave place to travel,” Sechrist said.
He says he chose 701 Hudson Condos because it was the most urban space and located on one floor.
“I’ve always had a fascination with living in New York City although my family’s here, my jobs were here and so I wanted to stay in Oklahoma City, but I sort of liked the New York style of living,” Sechrist said.
Downtown OKC says more residents are moving downtown but it’s unclear just how many.
Developer Brent Swift says it’s a risk he’s willing to take.
“It’s still that kind of pioneer state where people are coming in, putting a product out there and you’re still kind of waiting for clients to come along,” Brent Swift said.
West Village will have restaurants, salon, tiny grocery store for staples and other retail on the bottom floors.
Meanwhile, 701 Hudson condos has three units occupied now with eight more available.