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Edmond, Norman and Midwest City are interested in joining rail system

Community leaders from across central Oklahoma are talking about regional transit throughout the metro area. An 18-month feasibility study is underway.
by Diana Baldwin Modified: July 17, 2013 at 3:00 pm •  Published: July 16, 2013

Community leaders in Edmond, Norman and Midwest City met this week to talk about what regional transit would look like in their cities.

Stakeholders are offering local input for the CentralOK!go Study, an 18-month project being conducted by the Association of Central Oklahoma Governments.

Members of a Regional Transit Dialogue Steering Committee made up of elected and appointed officials have been meeting this year to discuss goals for a downtown Oklahoma City intermodal hub to link commuter transit to Edmond, Norman, Midwest City and Tinker Air Force Base.

“The purpose of this project is to go through and analyze the three corridors that came out of the 2005 Fixed Guideway Study System Plan,” said Diane Cowin, project coordinator. “It would have the highest density for transit.”

The study will provide more analysis and information concerning an alignment, technology, ridership forecasts, estimated costs and potential funding sources for each corridor.

The north-to-south corridor connecting downtown Oklahoma City to Edmond is 14 miles.

At one of the Edmond meetings to discuss the north corridor, the 14 community leaders present expressed concern about funding and who would govern the regional transit project. The meeting was held at the Edmond Area Chamber of Commerce.

Cost estimates for a light rail system between Edmond, Oklahoma City and Norman is between $2 billion and $3 billion. A commuter rail system is much cheaper at a cost of $200 million to $300 million.

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by Diana Baldwin
Sr. Reporter
Diana Baldwin has been an Oklahoma journalist since 1976 and came to The Oklahoman in 1991. She covered the Oklahoma City bombing and covered the downfall of Oklahoma City police forensic chemist Joyce Gilchrist misidentifying evidence. She wrote...
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