Exploring Tunnels Below Downtown Tulsa

Tuesday, March 18th 2008, 8:10 pm
By: News On 6

Beneath the skyline of downtown Tulsa lies a maze of tunnels built in the 1920's.  Insights into the history of Tulsa and the oilmen who influenced Green Country are chronicled through downtown architecture.

More than 80-feet of underground tunnels were first built between the Philtower and the Philcade.  The Tulsa Tunnels were built during the oil boom days of the early 20th century.

The tunnels connect eight buildings, three covered parking garages, numerous eating areas and a world-class hotel, the Crown Plaza.

With a combination of the underground tunnels, above-ground building corridors and sky bridges, it's possible to go from 5th Street and Boston to 1st Street and Main without going outside.

On days when heavy showers hit the area, it's a nice alternative for those who work downtown.

"I've been here for about 13 years in downtown for all of those so I've used them quite a bit over the years. I'm going to the bank to make a deposit and I'm using the tunnels because it's raining," said Charlie Black, who uses the tunnels.

Our Tour was given by Alice Froeschle, who is part of Bandana Tours and Events.

The entire tour offers a look at the tunnels, art décor, oil towers, and architecture of what was once the Oil Capitol of the world.

Some of the old tunnels are no longer in use.

For more information on how to schedule a tour yourself go to www.bandanatours.com.

By Margaret Stokes, NewsOn6.com anchor/reporter and Kyle Dierking, Video Journalist. Find more of their stories in our Web Exclusives section.