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American Fidelity Assurance Company isn’t getting into the newspaper business, but it is purchasing the campus of the Oklahoma Publishing Company. The deal includes a 12-story tower, manufacturing plant, parking garage, day care center and about 150 acres near Britton Road and Broadway Extension. The company currently is housed in three buildings near N.W. 17th Street and Classen Boulevard, and one at 5100 N. Classen Blvd.
The terms of the deal were not released, and American Fidelity says it has no immediate plans to begin constructing new buildings on the property.
The Oklahoma City Council approved the 2012-13 city budget by an 8-1 vote in June. The approved budget is for $951,851,447. Of that total, the general fund accounts for $387,306,992 to cover payroll, materials and necessary supplies. The budget allowed for the creation of 85 new positions when it went in to effect July 1, a 1.9% increase over the previous year. With the new positions, the city now employs 4,511 people.
Public safety added 22 new police positions, and while no firefighters were added, the budget allows for funding of 29 positions currently paid for by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security that would otherwise expire in May 2013.
Streets added 12 positions, code enforcement received 12 new positions, transit received four new positions, and parks received a new athletic and fitness coordinator.
Oklahoma City University plans to offer two new degree programs this fall in software engineering at its Meinders School of Business.
With demand for software engineers expected to grow in the coming years, university officials responded to address the rapidly changing industry and help meet that anticipated demand. The university cited figures from the U.S. Department of Labor that showed software engineering is expected to be one of the fastest growing career fields through 2018 with an estimated 34% growth rate.
The program will offer students two tracks: one will focus on computer science, while the other will expand into business solutions to integrate systems and network perspectives into the core courses. The new programs will give students a well-rounded education focused on planning, design, quality assurance and project management.
Love’s Travel Stops & Country Stores opened a compressed natural gas fueling station at its Guthrie store, 2530 E. Noble Ave. Love’s plans to open 10 CNG stations at stores around the state this summer.
The project is in partnership with Chesapeake Energy Corp. to increase the number of CNG stations for consumers, the Chesapeake fleet and other corporate fleets.
The first Love’s CNG opened in 2011 in Kingfisher.
Danielle Keogh opened Liberté in the Classen Curve shopping center, catering to executive women looking for the latest fashions. Keogh, a financial executive, is keeping her day job, but opened the store to offer women clothing and accessory brands largely unavailable in this market.
“Women shouldn’t have to travel to New York, Chicago or even Dallas to find recognized or up-and-coming designers,” she says. “The absence of large, specialty department stores combined with Midwest culture — and even our climate — creates a niche fashion market in our state. Liberté is a place that will transcend the act of buying clothes into an experience that enhances the unique spirit of the women who live and work in Oklahoma. These are the exclusive fashions you find in the best boutiques in New York.”
The 2,500-square-foot space was designed by HSE Architects.
Devon Energy Corp. donated $1 million to the YWCA shelter. The shelter launched a three-year, $15 million capital campaign to expand and update its facilities. Devon made the first large corporate gift.
The YWCA reports the shelter is full most of the time, and many victims go without services.
Courtney Hamar, public relations and development coordinator for YWCA Oklahoma City, says the new building will include 85 beds. In the existing building, there will be 52 beds for extended stays.