Old business college and soup kitchen turns into salon and rumored restaurant

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OKLAHOMA - It was once a Baptist church with a soup kitchen for the homeless.

Now, the 1921 building is seeing new life.

"Most people know it as the home of the downtown Baptist church or Hill's business college, which it served as both for many decades, but it also served as a stores and small shops in a variety throughout the decades,” said Developer David Wanzer.

It's been vacant for a decade though, until Wanzer and his partners bought it for $1.2 million two years ago.

They spent another $5 and a half million renovating it while keeping its historic integrity, something tax credits helped pay for.

"So, this is the original terrazzo lobby in this arcade, the original terrazzo stairs into the office space that was originally office space,” Wanzer said.

And, upstairs is a big open space where students used to attend class in the 20s all the way to the 60s.

"One of the features that the developers put in is this facade in the entry way. During the construction process, they found out something like this existed before, however it was in such bad shaped they decided to recreate it," Wanzer said. "Putting this historic structures that have sat empty for a decade are a really costly endeavor, especially to bring it back to life and make it ready for another hundred years."

Now, it's set to become a men's grooming and shave shop, nail salon and two restaurants in the works.

One of them rumored to be a new concept from the owner of Waffle Champion.

"I think, in five years, all of those store fronts along Sheridan will be fully activated. You'll see quite a bit of infill happening on Main Street. There's a lot of parking lots. There's a lot of infill projects already in the works."

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