After seeing repeated references to the planned downtown boulevard couched with the word “if” when describing its construction, I contacted Oklahoma Department of Transportation spokeswoman Terri Angier to see if they see it as an “if” as well. After all, it was former Secretary of Transportation Neal McCalebl who promised the boulevard as part of the I-40 relocation and at the time was no “if” about it.
I’ll let you the readers decide if there is an “if” in this answer from Angier:
The reference about the boulevard was not in the statement from ODOT so you’ll have to ask AP about that part. However, we are still committed to building the boulevard and have always included the cost in out estimates.The boulevard was included as part of the official environmental documents.
As is with all ODOT projects, they are evaluated for placement in the 8-year plan each year when the plan is balanced. While the boulevard is not in the 8-year plan at this point because there is still several years of Crosstown construction remaining, the plans are to place it in there as we approach 2012. Until then it can’t be touched since it is being used as our current interstate.
We are in frequent communication with the City on this issue and as we develop plans together on the boulevard the next few years, more details including the actual and not the rough costs can be refined. The City is looking at their options on how they want to see the boulevard and all of that will come into play in planning for the boulevard. I hope that answers your question.