And that's where the connection to downtown and Bricktown becomes essential to the area's future. The river is drawing thousands of visitors already with the popular regattas, drag boat races and other events.
Restaurants, shops and hotels ordinarily would set up in and around these venues. But shoreline space is dedicated to the rowing and water sport venues, and little room will be left for ancillary commercial development.
More connection is needed — and will take place with development of the new downtown boulevard. And when it's all done — not that far off in the future — a new generation will grow up never knowing a time when the Oklahoma River wasn't a part of their downtown.