Advisory panel approves plan for MAPS 3 downtown Oklahoma City park

Known as “Core-to-Shore,” the park would link downtown and the Oklahoma River, and is seen as a catalyst for development south of the planned boulevard.
by William Crum Published: December 19, 2013

An advisory panel on Wednesday approved the master plan for the MAPS 3 downtown park.

Known as “Core-to-Shore,” the park would link downtown and the Oklahoma River, and is seen as a catalyst for development south of the Oklahoma City Boulevard.

The new park will consist of 40 acres north of Interstate 40 and 30 acres between I-40 and the river, connected by the SkyDance pedestrian bridge.

It will be bounded by Hudson and Robinson avenues, and is situated south of Myriad Gardens and the MAPS 3 convention center.

At $132 million, it is one of the most expensive of the MAPS 3 projects. Construction is expected to take $80 million of the total, and be completed in 2021.

The park is to include gardens and fountains, a “great lawn” facing a stage, a promenade, and a lake.

The MAPS 3 park subcommittee heard two proposals from groups interested in preserving the 90-year-old Film Exchange building, within the park boundaries at SW 5 Street and Robinson.

The panel recommended the groups be given until about the end of March to submit workable plans.

Led by local historian Bradley Wynn, one group said it was interested in developing an Oklahoma City History Museum in the Film Exchange building.

The master plan drawn up by Hargreaves Associates of New York includes tearing down all the structures on the park acreage except the historic Union Station railroad depot.

Design director George Hargreaves said a decision to preserve the Film Exchange would increase costs for park design and delay construction.

The MAPS 3 Citizens Advisory Board and the city council will review the recommendations.

by William Crum
OU and Norman High School graduate, formerly worked as a reporter and editor for the Associated Press, the Star Tribune in Minneapolis, and the Norman Transcript. Married, two children, lives in Norman.
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