Arvest Bank to expand in Oklahoma City, rename downtown building Arvest Tower

Arvest Tower - Downtown OKC

McAfee & Taft is pleased to serve as legal counsel to long-time client Arvest Bank in its negotiation of a lease of approximately 40,000 square feet on the first floor and mezzanine level of 201 S. Robert S. Kerr in downtown Oklahoma City, as well as the renaming of the building to Arvest Tower.

The company will renovate the space and establish its central Oklahoma headquarters there, as well as provide personal, commercial and wealth management banking services in the new location. The renovation is expected to be complete in fall 2020.

“This downtown Oklahoma City location and statewide expansion for Arvest Bank signals several key directions for us,” said Brad Krieger, chairman of Arvest Bank of Oklahoma City and regional executive vice president of Arvest Bank Group, Inc.

“It’s a vote of confidence in Oklahoma City and the downtown area, as well as the entire state. We’ve been involved in the growth and support of community-wide efforts with the Oklahoma City Chamber, Tulsa Regional Chamber and others across the state. We want to continue that support and even deepen our involvement in the future. It is also a response to our own growth and need to have banking services within walking distance for our customers and businesses with a downtown presence. The central downtown location was ideal to meet those needs.”

Arvest Tower has 16 floors, 202,000 total square feet, covered and adjacent parking and was built in 1972. Arvest has negotiated ample parking spaces for customers and bank associates. The lobby features a 27-foot ceiling and tiled marble floors. Renovations will include removing some walls to open the lobby, updates to bathrooms and common areas, and designing more contemporary, flexible workspaces for approximately 70 associates.

“It’s an advantage that the building has housed banking services in the past and we want to preserve some of the original features, but we will also be making renovations based on how customers use space today,” said Ron Witherspoon, president of Arvest in Oklahoma City.

Witherspoon points to casual, open spaces for both customers and associates.

“We are blending the need for privacy and noise reduction with visually open spaces to allow natural light and comfortable, informal meeting spots throughout the space,” he said. “We also are creating flexible gathering spaces for community events that our small business customers and non-profits will be able to use, and for Arvest to host educational and social events.”

The new lease and renovations to create Arvest Tower come on the heels of other recent Arvest Bank expansion news, including a new parking garage and other commercial activities in downtown Tulsa and new branches in Owasso and Capitol Hill in Oklahoma City.

Arvest Bank, named by Forbes magazine as one of the “World’s Best Banks” for 2019, operates more than 260 bank branches in Arkansas, Oklahoma, Missouri and Kansas through a group of 14 locally managed banks, each with its own board and management team. These banks serve customers in more than 135 communities, with extended weekday banking hours at many locations. Arvest also provides a wide range of banking services including loans, deposits, treasury management, credit cards, mortgage loans and mortgage servicing. Arvest is an Equal Housing Lender and Member FDIC.

McAfee & Taft real estate attorneys Lloyd Hardin (lead) and Brett Merritt represented Arvest Bank in the negotiation of the lease and the handling of due diligence matters related to the transaction.