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Bold, visionary step
Ford Center renovations would boost city's status

By Gov. Brad Henry Published: March 2, 2008

u can try nudging it along with attention and strategic investment, but ultimately momentum either materializes or it doesn't. Fortunately, Oklahoma City is reaping the dividends of an electrifying momentum that began with MAPS in 1993.

That landmark initiative spurred a downtown renaissance that shows no sign of slowing. Building state-of-the-art facilities such as the Ford Center, AT&T Bricktown Ballpark and Bricktown Canal — as well as development of the Oklahoma River — inspired further investment, growth and jobs. Bricktown emerged as a dynamic entertainment district and bona fide tourist destination. The shining jewel that is downtown Oklahoma City has economic, cultural and perceptual implications felt throughout the state, contributing to the ascendancy of Oklahoma as we enter our second century of statehood.

Let's ensure that momentum continues. Before us is a rare opportunity, a chance for Oklahoma City to become — quite literally — a big league city. We have witnessed a remarkable transformation over the past two decades, but it behooves us to heed the advice of Will Rogers: "Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there.”

We have incredible momentum. The task at hand, as Will Rogers suggested, is to build on that momentum. If we take advantage of this opportunity, our city and state will flourish. Please vote yes on Tuesday.