If you thought the politics on MAPS 3 was rough during the campaign, brace yourself.
Much of the area that will benefit from MAPS 3′s biggest projects could be changing ownership. The city is considering declaring a large area south of downtown between Interstate 40 and the Oklahoma River blighted and subject to urban renewal. Such a declaration would make it easier for the city to use eminent domain to purchase the land.
The area includes the proposed location for the 70-acre downtown park and several of the possible locations for the new convention center, both included in MAPS 3.
Urban renewal is usually controversial, and eminent domain is one of the major reasons why. The city used a similar strategy to buy up land in and around Bricktown after the first MAPS initiative passed in 1993.
The city council will take up the issue at its meeting Tuesday.
- Staff Writer Bryan Dean