Bond Issue Requested to Buy Union Station / $4.5 Million Would Help Finance Purchase, Renovation

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Wednesday by Thurman Magbee of Oklahoma City's Thurman Magbee Corp. to help finance the purchase of the historic former Union Station and renovation for a safety vault and related services.

The safety vault would be for microfilm, tapes and record storage, plus an office complex for related businesses, said Magbee in a letter to the Oklahoma City Redevelopment Authority, which issue bonds in a specified area in central Oklahoma City.

"We plan to establish a limited partnership under the name of Union Station Associates Ltd," said Magbee, "to purchase the property and expand it into a "state-of-the-art' security vault and related services for businesses, financial institutions and private individuals."

The overall project is expected to cost about $6 million, Magbee said.

The landmark Union Station at 300 SW 7th St. was purchased in 1978 from the Frisco and Rock Island railroads and renovated by Thurman Magbee Corp., which occupies the property for sale and distribution of consumer electronic products.

"In the renovation process," said Magbee, "our marketing channel changed." A feasibility study indicates the building would be "an ideal security vault facility," he said.

There are about 20 partners in the venture - principally local business people, Magbee said.

"It's an exciting new idea, " Magbee said, "and something that is needed here. We can provide an important service to local firms and also give them the prestige of the former train station, which is on the National Register of Historic Places."

The firm would seek business from an area from Wichita to Dallas and from Amarillo to Little Rock, he said.

"The project will improve the area (between Int. Hwy. 40 and the N. Canadian River) and create new jobs for the city and the state of Oklahoma," said Magbee.

The project would utilize the tunnels for the safety vault under the railroad tracks, Magbee said. The tunnels contain about 15,000 square feet and have concrete walls 5 to 10 feet thick.

In addition to the tunnels, plans are to convert another 30,000 square feet of the warehouse space into security vaults for the venture.

The project, Magbee said, would include building of vaults, temperature control, teller windows, security devices amd other features. Also a part of the project would include creating new office space for lease along the front of the building.

The investor group already has received extensive interest and commitments from local financial firms to use the new service. All of them, he said, now send their duplicate records to the facility located in abandoned salt mines in Kansas, just outside of Kansas City, or to abandoned silos used for security storage near Laurel, Miss. …