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Inattention to details seen in minor glitches in OKC

With more than $1 billion being invested in downtown Oklahoma City, oversights and mistakes can result in unintended consequences.
by Steve Lackmeyer Modified: November 30, 2010 at 9:05 am •  Published: November 30, 2010

Two years after the project's completion, the city is now planning to convert the street to two-way traffic as part of Project 180 — much to the joy of area businesses and property owners.

Going back even further, there was briefly a time when a rebuilt Broadway along Automobile Alley was going to include no curbside parking spaces. The spaces added, after complaints from property owners, remain unusually big (long enough for two cars per space). Property owners recently released an engineering study showing how the street can be re-striped to allow for up to 200 added parking spots.

A call to the city's planning department reveals that despite the “Guardian” sculpture and the cowboy sculpture both going through downtown design review, their relationship to each other was not discussed. The city's public works department, meanwhile, referred calls about the fenced-in grate on NE 2 to Oklahoma Gas and Electric, but a utility spokesman responded the matter wasn't related to any of its infrastructure.

With $1 billion being invested downtown in a relative short period of time, oversights will occur. But with a watchful public ready to ask “why,” maybe, just maybe, the Indian and cowboy will end up friends and sidewalks won't be fenced off to pedestrians.

by Steve Lackmeyer
Business Reporter
Steve Lackmeyer is a reporter and columnist who started his career at The Oklahoman in 1990. Since then, he has won numerous awards for his coverage, which included the 1995 bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building, the city's Metropolitan...
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