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MAPS 3 construction in Oklahoma City almost under way

The MAPS 3 Citizen Advisory Board recommended Thursday that the Oklahoma City Council approve a $3.1 million contract to install improved racecourse lighting on the Oklahoma River. It would represent the first major construction as part of MAPS 3.
BY MICHAEL KIMBALL mkimball@opubco.com Modified: June 28, 2012 at 10:14 pm •  Published: June 29, 2012
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Wynn's bid came in at about $50,000 over the lighting project budget of $3 million, but it exceeded it by a low enough amount that it can be absorbed with minor changes to the rest of the Oklahoma River project budget, Todd said.

Construction on the lighting improvements is expected to begin this year.

MAPS 3 has an estimated total budget of $777 million, paid for by the latest version of a penny sales tax first approved in the 1990s. The projects are the river improvements, a convention center, a modern downtown streetcar, an urban downtown park, more and improved trails and sidewalks, improvements to State Fair Park and four senior health and wellness centers.

More power

A companion item recommended by the board Thursday is a payment of up to $442,000 to the Oklahoma Gas and Electric Co. for utility improvements in the area.

The lights and elements of the white-water course, which is also part of the MAPS 3 Oklahoma River improvements, require vastly more power than is available with current electric infrastructure along the river, city Public Works Director Eric Wenger said.

“It's not a household current when we talk about the electricity we're seeking down there,” Wenger said.