Neighbor For Neighbor begins renovation of the Northland Shopping Center

Tuesday, April 29th 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

Longtime Tulsans will remember Northland Shopping Center at 515 East 36th Street North, as one of Tulsa's early suburban shopping centers.

Tuesday, representatives from many of Tulsa's charitable foundations and Neighbor for Neighbor are breaking ground of a renovation project designed to turn Northland into a vibrant multi-use neighborhood center once again.

News on 6 reporter Rick Wells says the symbolic ground breaking really begins not only the renovation of this shopping center is also the beginning of a fund raising effort. And if that is successful this will be Neighbor for Neighbor's new home.

Right now Neighbor for Neighbor is housed in a collection of donated buildings on 46th Street North. Over the years, they've grown over the last 40 years into a very busy neighborhood help center. Thousands of Tulsans come to Neighbor for Neighbor for assistance with everything from food and housing, medical, dental, legal services and much more.

Neighbor for Neighbor outgrew its space long ago and to continue the work they do, they need more space. Ann Smith, Neighbor for Neighbor director: "We talked about either buying an existing facility or building a new one and we thought it would be ridiculous to build a new place when there are so many places in north Tulsa that need to be revitalized." Places like Northland. When it was build in the '50's it was the prime shopping center on the north side.

Well then the shopping headed south and so did the business. "We have very high hopes that with re-doing the shopping center, which it greatly needs, and working more with the tenants than has been done before, we can really revitalize this area."

Northland currently is home to some small churches; the north side drivers license bureau, a tag agent, and the Deborah Brown Charter School, and even more vacant space.

When the renovation is completed about this time next year, there should be room for most of the current tenants, and a greatly expanded Neighbor for Neighbor.