Nine historic downtown buildings set for demolition; paving way for new office tower

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OKLAHOMA CITY-- Nine historic buildings in downtown Oklahoma City will soon meet the wrecking ball.

On Thursday developers got the go ahead to tear down the buildings located between Hudson and Walker and Main and Sheridan.

That's directly west of the Devon Tower.

The Downtown Design Review Committee met at city hall and voted to demolish the nine buildings in favor of a new office tower.

"They have effectively removed an important part of our past," said David Pettyjohn with Preservation Oklahoma. "I heard them described as sad and obsolete but they're not. They're part of our past and today we lost them and its very disappointing."

The plan is to build this new 27-story office tower along with two adjoining parking garages, with Devon Energy being the new buildings major tenant.

After lobbying for 4 hours and eventually getting their way, a large group including the developer, his representative, and several others left without talking to the media.

David Pettyjohn wasn't so shy.

"These buildings were the last part of our Main street. Every city has a Main street and in Oklahoma City there's not a lot left, unfortunately," said Pettyjohn. "Today we lost a significant part of it."

The decision can be appealed to the city's board of adjustments.

As for a timeline, the goal is to begin demolition as early as next month with construction on the tower wrapping up in 2017.

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