Outlook 2013: In Oklahoma City, parks, bike paths and outdoor activities are key to healthful future

Danielle Keogh, owner of Liberte, a boutique in Oklahoma City’s Classen Curve, and government contractor, believes a healthier future can and will be had in Oklahoma City.

by Heather Warlick Published: April 28, 2013

Danielle Keogh is a visionary — the former Army reservist turned government contractor brought her international fashion sense to Oklahoma City when she opened Liberte.

Starting the boutique in Classen Curve was a “brain release” for Keogh from her heady day-to-day work and gave her a chance to revisit the many designers and specialty boutiques she fell in love with during her world travels.

Q. What will the biggest change be in the Oklahoma City metro area?

A. You’ve heard the old adage that “less is more” — this concept will define Oklahoma City’s future. Oklahoma City is one of the fastest growing metropolitan areas (population greater than 500,000) in the nation; however it still has to differentiate itself and compete with other cities like Dallas and Chicago. While increasing significantly, the state and city’s revenue will still be limited and will require us as a community to accomplish more with less. As a result, the biggest change in Oklahoma City will not be based on infrastructure, skylines or even recruiting the next big oil and gas or aerospace contractor. The biggest change the city can and will make is from within by continuing its greater focus on healthy lifestyles and finally achieving the goal of moving out of the top 10 least healthy cities in the U.S.

Q. Will there be physical changes? If so, what will they look like?

A. The city will have physical changes and, with its limited resources, will strategically invest in education, reform and limited infrastructure. While the city will see an improvement of schools and maybe a new skyscraper or two, the key changes will be more subtle with new parks, athletic fields, bike paths, etc., all designed to draw people to more outdoor and exercise-related activities.

by Jacob Unruh
Jacob Unruh is a graduate of Northeastern State University. He was born in Cherokee and raised near Vera where he attended Caney Valley High School.During his tenure at NSU, Unruh wrote for The Northeastern (NSU's student newspaper), the...
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