Airgas to Establish Regional Headquarters in Downtown Tulsa
Airgas Inc. announced in late January its intention to open a 58,000-square-foot downtown regional headquarters in March and add as many as 130 new employees, most of them this year. The supplier of industrial and medical gasses will add to its Tulsa work force with a new office for its business, accounting and administrative operations serving the company’s central division. The company already has 50 employees at its facility just northeast of downtown. Those workers will be moved to the downtown office bringing total employment to 180.
Baker Hughes to Invest $36 Million in Claremore
Baker Hughes’ expansion at its Centrilift facility in Claremore is the beginning of a $36 million local investment to build a new research and development center at the site over the next year. Centrilift manufactures and tests artificial lift and electrical submersible pump systems. In addition to the investment, Baker Hughes plans to add approximately 700 new jobs at its facilities in Broken Arrow, Sand Springs and Barnsdall.
SageNet Acquires Georgia-Based Redlight Communications
Tulsa-based SageNet, a provider of network managed services for multisite retail businesses, has acquired a Georgia network solutions company. Redlight Communications based in Macon, Ga., designs, configures and installs wide area networks for the convenience and petroleum industries. SageNet has experienced significant growth over the last year, growing from 50 employees to nearly 100 at its Tulsa headquarters and an Oklahoma City office.
Tulsa Ranked No. 2 in the Country for Secured Data Centers
The Boyd Co., a site selection consulting firm based in Princeton, N.J., recently ranked Tulsa No. 2 in the country for the establishment of secure data centers for the housing and banking industries. Tulsa was selected due the University of Tulsa’s Institute for Information Security, which combines study and research into addressing cyber security issues on a variety of fronts. The location of HP’s and Google’s data centers in the region also influenced the ranking.
Design Expected by May for Broken Arrow Broadway Gateway Project
Final designs for the Broadway Gateway Project in Broken Arrow are expected to be complete by May. The work on Broadway Avenue is expected to start in late June and be completed by late May 2013. The Broadway Gateway Project is the first of the old town street reconstruction projects as envisioned in the Downtown Master Plan. Plans call for adding parallel and angled parking, landscaping, new curbing and surfacing.
New Trails to Connect Owasso to Tulsa
Work is expected to begin soon on a 4.38-mile stretch of the Tulsa Area Trails Master Plan that will link Mohawk Park and downtown Owasso. The connection will bring Owasso in and connect it to the overall trail network. Today, the extension of paved trails has reached over 100 miles, extending to Sand Springs, Jenks, Broken Arrow, Sperry, Skiatook and now Owasso.
Tulsa Metro Jobless Rate Declines
Metro Tulsa’s unemployment rate dropped to 6.4 percent in November according to reports by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The rate was down from a revised 6.7 percent in October. In November 2010, the seven-county MSA had a jobless rate of 7.5 percent.
State Tax Revenues Show Big Gain
The holiday shopping season was better than last year in Oklahoma with gross revenue collections for December increasing 11.1 percent over December 2010. For December, gross income tax collections, a combination of personal and corporate income taxes, were up 28.2 percent from the previous year, bringing in $373.73 million. December was the fifth month this year that collections rose by more than 10 percent, and it’s the 22nd consecutive month of growth in receipts.
Creek Turnpike to Get New Ramps in Broken Arrow
A new interchange on the Creek Turnpike is expected to be open within three months. Officials are adding an interchange at Aspen Avenue in Broken Arrow to accommodate increasing development in the area. The Creek Turnpike between U.S. 75 and Memorial Drive will also be widened to handle traffic flow in south Tulsa in the near future.
Tulsa Zoo Completes $5 Million Sea Lion Exhibit
The Tulsa Zoo’s two sea lions are back home and getting used to their new $5 million exhibit, which features a 100,000-gallon saltwater pool, an underwater viewing wall, naturalistic rocks, waterfall feature, bleacher seating and a demonstration stage. The Helmerich Sea Lion Cove is scheduled to open in March after final construction is complete with signs and interactive features.
Tulsa Sales Tax Revenue Jumps During Holiday Season
Tulsa’s holiday shopping season was a good one, boosting city sales tax revenue by 11.35 percent. Tulsa’s January check from the Oklahoma Tax Commission was for $20,033,782, compared to $17,992,168 last year. The revenue was collected between Nov. 16 and Dec. 15 representing the bulk of holiday spending.
Fiscal Times Ranks Tulsa No. 2 Best City for Young People to Find a Job
Tulsa ranks No. 2 among the 10 best cities for young people to find a job, according to a report from The Fiscal Times. The Fiscal Times looked at unemployment data from the Bureau of Labor Statistic’s 2010 population survey and the lasted data available for 20- to 34-year-olds in 116 of the country’s largest metro areas to help compile its ranking. Tulsa is also home to the nation’s largest young professional’s organization with more than 8,000 members.
Tulsa Among Top 100 Metro Economies
Tulsa ranked among the world’s top 100 metropolitan economies for income and employment growth during 2010 and 2011, according to a report by the Brookings Institution. Ranked alongside metros in Asia, Latin America, Europe and the U.S., Tulsa placed 73rd in the Global MetroMonitor, part of the Metropolitan Policy Program at Brookings.
QuikTrip Makes Fortune Magazine’s 100 Best Companies to Work For List
QuikTrip once again made Fortune’s magazine’s list of the “100 Best Companies to Work For.” Tulsa-based QuikTrip, which made the list for the 10th straight year, ranked No. 66 in 2011. QuikTrip employs more than 11,600 people and had revenues of $8.8 billion. QuikTrip is also among 19 companies on Fortune’s list that have never had a layoff.
2011 Tulsa Home Sales Increase
Tulsa area home sales finished 2011 ahead of 2010 sales numbers. The Greater Tulsa Association of Realtors reported that 10,133 homes changed hands during 2011, up 1.4 percent from the 9,900 sales in 2010. Last year’s rise was due in part to a strong December with 789 home sales which was 13 percent above December 2010 and 6.2 percent above the previous month. December’s average price for a single-family home was $149,438.
Industrial Park Development Proposals Requested by Airport
A developer is being sought to create a 136-acre aerospace industrial park at Tulsa International Airport. The airport has identified the potential development south of 36th Street North and east of Mingo Road. Airport tenants and aerospace companies have expressed the need for hangar, office and warehouse space near the airport.
Oral Roberts University Breaks Ground on Alumni Student Center
Oral Roberts University broke ground in late January on its first major new building in three decades. The $12.5 million Armand Hammer Alumni-Student Center will be just east of the Prayer Tower on campus. The 28,000-square-foot building will house a high-tech game area, living areas, a food court and an outdoor eating area. The second level will house the alumni lounge. The building is expected to be open by January 2013.