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Griffin Communications Media Center

Griffin Communications Media CenterKOTV News on 6, the CBS affiliate in Tulsa, Oklahoma, had called home a small, outdated, tractor dealership building for all 57 years of its existence. In 2006, Griffin Communications, which purchased KOTV in late 2000, knew it needed to construct a new facility if KOTV was to continue being the leading provider of news, weather, sports, community information and CBS programming to the citizens of Tulsa. Griffin considered numerous sites in and around the Tulsa metro for the new facility, ultimately deciding it was mandatory that the station remain located in the heart of the community it serves (this decision added significant additional cost to the prospect of a new facility due to elevated land cost, construction complexity and increased ad valorem taxes). Undaunted, Griffin targeted 3.3 acres of land in what was then known as Brady Village, a low income, economically depressed area located just to the north of Tulsa’s downtown core and began aggregating multiple land parcels required to construct a shiny new facility. Land acquisition was completed in spring 2008 and Griffin targeted construction to begin that fall. Concurrently, philanthropic interests in the community launched plans to recast the area from a warehouse district to the Brady Arts District, an eclectic art community including museums, art studios and galleries, all capped by a new park. In effect, Griffin’s planned project became the catalyst for revitalization of the previously blighted area.

Two weeks before ground-breaking, Lehman Brothers failed triggering a global financial crisis that resulted in the collapse of the United States and global economies. Needless to say, everything was put on hold…

Fast forward to Spring 2011. Due to the severity of the recession and uncertainty as to timing/potential strength of a recovery, Griffin was still not financially comfortable moving forward with the project. That’s when discussions began with New Markets Redevelopment (“NMR”) and Oklahoma New Markets Fund (“ONMF”), a subsidiary of Bank of Oklahoma, about how potential New Market Tax Credit financing might once again make the project economically feasible.

Griffin Communications Media CenterThe result – Griffin, armed with the benefit of below market New Market Tax Credit incentivized loans totaling $28.4 million; $17 million provided by NMR and $11.4 million provided by ONMF, was able to break ground on October 4, 2011 with completion of the project in January 2013. Included were the following:

  • A 57,000 square foot state-of-the-art multimedia broadcast facility in the heart of downtown Tulsa
  • An on-site heliport for SkyNews 6, the only news gathering helicopter in the Tulsa market
  • The latest, most sophisticated, HD digital television equipment infrastructure available
  • A 700 square foot conference room with all the accoutrements that is offered free of charge to community groups as a meeting site
  • A 1,000 square foot area available to serve as a collection/storage facility in conjunction with Griffin’s partnership with the Community Food Bank of Eastern Oklahoma and Food For Kids program

Community impacts and benefits from this project include generation of over 120 construction jobs and continuation of 170 permanent jobs with an accompanying $10 million payroll within the low income census tract in downtown Tulsa. Additionally, the Griffin Media Center project helped generate in excess of $120 million of new construction and renovation projects within the district thus preserving historically significant structures, increasing land values and stimulating increased ad valorem tax revenues. KOTV’s home within the district provides a powerful promotional platform for marketing the new Guthrie Green (a one square block park located just to the south of the facility), the new art museums, galleries, shops, hotels and restaurants that have been drawn to the Brady Arts District in conjunction with its new identity and energy.

  • Guthrie Green is fast becoming the venue of choice for community events and special gatherings
    • Featuring live music “on the green”
    • Food truck Wednesday’s
    • Shakespeare in the Park
    • and numerous other community activities.

Griffin Communications/KOTV NewsOn6 is very pleased it could build its new home in this important area of downtown Tulsa and is thankful that the New Markets Tax Credit program provided low cost financing allowing the construction of a highly valuable asset for the City of Tulsa.

New Markets Redevelopment, LLC
5801 N. Broadway Extension, Suite 120
Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 73118
405.842.0100, Fax 405.848.8248