TYLER, TX (KLTV) - One of the first steps in a plan to revitalize downtown Tyler took the form of renovations made to space on the Plaza Tower’s 10th floor.
In August 2018, new owners purchased the iconic building on the downtown square with ideas to bring the relic up to date. On Thursday, a tour of the 10th floor area revealed one of the first steps in process was complete.
“We’re very excited about downtown, we have a lot going on,” said Garnett Brookshire, managing partner of Plaza Tower. “People’s Petroleum Building was our first project; we’re now 99 percent leased. So, as of last August, we purchase Plaza Tower and we plan on doing the same thing. We want to renovate and lease.”
Brookshire described the 10th floor renovations as an “open, modern floor plan" with plenty of natural light. all of which are aspects of an office building he said weren’t offered anywhere in East Texas.
“We’re excited to present something new to the office market in downtown,” Brookshire added.
The next step is to move to the 1st floor of Plaza Tower and incorporate a retail component, Brookshire revealed, in the form of a mall with several retail entities providing coffee, fast grab-and-go style breakfast and lunch options, as well as a gym.
“We want to make this a little community where folks can work and play and not have to leave the office to grab lunch, they’ll have lots of options,” Brookshire explained. “We’re going to take out the black glass, put in a completely clear storefront, have a very modern look.”
As part of the Plaza Tower retail plan, four spots on the west side of the square that were previously parallel parking have been transformed into nine spots for retail parking only. Crews also merged the three lanes of traffic into two to make room for the additional spots.
The overall goal, Brookshire revealed, is to revitalize the downtown Tyler square by adding more retail options for customers. Brookshire said the plans could come to fruition within "the next year”, with the intention of breathing life back into the west side of the square.
“We’ve come a long way in the past 5 years, the next couple of years the momentum is really going to build,” Brookshire said. “We just hope to add to that by what we’re doing here.”