New Apartment Owners Could Bring Change to Troubled Area

The residents of apartments in south Tulsa are all living on Tulsa time, but the new owner has an LA state of mind.

"We like the fundamental core values that Tulsa offers as a community," said Steve Firtel. He and his Los Angeles associates have recently bought five T-town apartment complexes, including Canyon Creek, Sand Dollar, and The Arbors of Southern Hills. How many units in all?

"Totalling 1,368 properties," he said.

And with some of them in the vicinity of 61st & peoria, there's hope that with new ownership comes change for the area as a whole.

"They want to make these communities, not just apartment living," said Tulsa city councilor Jeannie Cue. She has been passionate about revitalizing the neighborhood, and is optimistic that the long distance owners will have a very local presence.

"I know there's always skepticism when new developers come in, but I really feel his heart's in the right place," she said.

"A lot of times real estate owners from out of state will make an investment and that's the last time the owners will ever see that investment," said Firtel.

But not them, he says, citing the several visits they've already made to town and their commitment to bolstering each complex's character.

"We hold firm that we want good quality individuals. We want people that take pride in their community, and that usually means individuals who do not have problems with the law," he said.

All of which is welcome news to area resident Sylvia Spilman.

"I think that it will make a big difference in the area because I think then we could get some really good retail businesses in the area, and that's what we really need in this general area," she said.