Less than two years after purchasing a building that formerly housed the SpiritBank Event Center in the city of Bixby in Tulsa, Oklahoma, for $10 million to become the new home of his thriving congregation, Pastor Michael Todd of Transformation Church has bought the entire retail center around it for $20.5 million.
According to Tulsa World, city data from Tulsa County property records show that Transformation Group Holdings Corporation, which lists Todd as president, purchased PostRock Plaza, formerly known as Regal Plaza at 10438 S. 82nd East Ave., from Moab Holdings Regal Plaza.
Post Rock Plaza has more than 34 businesses as tenants, according to News 6, and Todd said the church hopes to inject profits from their real estate investment into philanthropy.
"This has been an unbelievable journey for us," Todd, whose church paid off the $10 million mortgage on his new church in six months, noted.
"There's over 34 businesses that function out of this area, and we get the opportunity to have great relationships with them and see the future grow in this community," the pastor continued. "We wanted this to be an investment for the long term of our church, that we could be able to get revenue to bless our community."
Rhonda Millet, a business tenant of the plaza who runs Oklahoma Hand and Physical therapy, said she was informed about the purchase on Monday. While she doesn’t foresee any impact the ownership change will have on her business, she was “excited” to see the “goodwill” of her new landlord.
"They're going to do a lot of goodwill and the things we supply through paying our rent, I'm excited to see what they do," Millet said to News 6.
Phil Frazier, the city's attorney, said they had looked at three different ways to fix the problem, including the drastic step of shutting down the church or making a deal that would appease the community.
"You read the books of Matthew and Romans, it talks about loving your neighbor and your neighbor right and that's what we're asking them to do," Frazier said in an earlier report.
It was noted that even when the building was named the SpiritBank Event Center in the late 2000s, there were many complaints about noise from it as well.
"When that noise comes on and you have a cup of coffee sitting on a counter in a neighbor's house, the water starts doing like this, it's that much vibration," said Frazier.
Transformation Church is one of the most popular churches in Tulsa. According to News Channel 8, even after Todd moved his congregation to the 35,000 square foot arena, weeks before the coronavirus pandemic was declared, the church was still attracting an “overflow” of visitors.
"We see people from our city and all around the world being able to come to this space and feel like they're at home, it's just special,” said Chris Harvey, social media director for Transformation Church.