The Oklahoma City Council today will begin discussing how the city should acquire the land it needs to build the MAPS 3 downtown park and convention center.
As Bryan Dean reported here yesterday, one option under consideration is declaring most of the land between downtown and the Oklahoma River an urban renewal area, which would make it easier for the city to use eminent domain to acquire land it needs for MAPS 3 projects. The area under consideration for urban renewal is commonly referred to as the Core to Shore area. Core to Shore was an in-depth planning process city leaders used a few years ago to decide how to connect downtown to the river and revitalize the downtrodden area in between.
Business writer and downtown guru Steve Lackmeyer had an article in today’s paper setting up the council’s discussion, which will likely span a few weeks. It’s sure to be a fiery talk – eminent domain is never without controversy, and MAPS 3 hasn’t been controversy-free, either.
The meeting begins at 8:30 a.m. at City Hall and is open to the public. You can also watch it on Cox cable channel 20. The meeting agenda is online here; item VI-G is the urban renewal item.