Saturday, December 18, 2010

A Tale of Two Energies

I took a number of photographs to see and show the status on goings-on downtown this morning, Saturday December 18, 2010 — one set to view what was going up and the other to view what was coming down. These are they, without much particular comment other than links to what has been said before.

In this post, click any image for a larger view.

Going Up      Coming Down

GOING UP — DEVON ENERGY TOWER. There was probably not one Oklahoma City citizen who was not busting his/her vicarious city-pride buttons when Devon Energy Corporation announced its intention on August 20, 2008, to build its new corporate headquarters tower on downtown space formerly occupied by nothing other than a parking garage and spaces, if city authorities agreed. This would not be just any other building but it would be the tallest building in the state and, without serious challenge, the most beautiful. Some skeptics did doubt, though, that it would ever get built.

Devon Energy has proven good to its word. Groundbreaking did occur on October 4, 2009, and construction progress has been nothing short of amazing. The photos below begin with the groundbreaking, another about a year later on October 9, 2010, and then those taken this morning on December 18, 2010. The project is on-schedule to be completed in 2012, a year and a few months after the date that today's photos were taken.

Groundbreaking on October 4, 2009

Progress since ground breaking has been chronicled well in's construction cam thread and its ongoing construction thread.

Progress as of October 9, 2010

Photos on December 18, 2010

COMING DOWN — SANDRIDGE DEMOLITION. The establishment of the SandRidge Commons proposal met with less enthusiastic community support for various reasons, not the least of which being that it would authorize the destruction of several historic downtown buildings, including the oldest still standing. Nonetheless, the project was approved and several historic structures have been and are being demolished as part of the plan. The photos below show the almost complete demolition of the Oklahoma City Savings & Loan Building and empty spaces where the old Kermac and YMCA buildings once stood. The soon to be razed 1902 India Temple is shown in the background of the 2nd and 3rd photos, below.

I've already added my observations about this project and no useful purpose is served by repeating them here. At this point, the best that can be hoped for, now that the damage has been and is being done, is that SandRidge Energy will finish what it has irrevocably started even though it is under no obligation to do so.

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