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Steve Lackmeyer: The Rise is a huge boost to Uptown

The Oklahoman's Steve Lackmeyer took questions from readers in today's OKC Central Live Chat. You can join Steve's Q&A's on Fridays at 10 a.m. and submit your questions about the happenings in and around downtown Oklahoma City.
by Steve Lackmeyer Modified: April 18, 2014 at 12:07 pm •  Published: April 18, 2014
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The Oklahoman's Steve Lackmeyer took questions from readers in today's OKC Central Live Chat. You can join Steve's Q&As on Fridays at 10 a.m. and submit your questions about the happenings in and around downtown Oklahoma City. Read the complete chat transcript here.

With all the surprises that The Rise has provided during its renovation, where do you rank this building in terms of renovation projects for mixed use on OKC?

The Rise is a huge boost to Uptown and hopefully will inspire other building renovations. The 1920s - 1950s authentic design and character of this development will add a tremendous amount of "buzz" to the area, creating the sort of vibe that will draw visitors. Think about how important the authentic brick warehouse feel was to making Bricktown what it is today. The Rise helps Uptown get that much closer to accomplishing the same feel. And remember, Uptown is along original Route 66. Something very special is being created along NW 23. But there is one big obstacle to complete success - the still dormant Tower Theater.

Does Uptown 23rd have the capability of becoming to most popular entertainment district in OKC along locals? What are some obstacles they will have to overcome to get there?

I think Uptown has the potential of becoming one of the city's leading entertainment districts, though traffic and parking is a big obstacle to realizing such success. I struggle to see any district outright eclipsing Bricktown. And I'd argue the Plaza District ranks second to Bricktown.

When should we know what the Convention Center site appraised for?

Probably within the next couple of months.

How does OKC compare to Tulsa in terms of national perception? Isn't OKC considered a bit more 'cowboy' and Tulsa a bit more worldly/artistic?

Tulsa might like to think that's still true. But I suspect Oklahoma City's image has changed quite a bit. Oklahoma City has an international image now, while Tulsa clearly does not.

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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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