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About Okie

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  • Birthday 01/14/1965

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  1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Texas_Medical_Center Let me help you. This one cluster of hospitals in Houston has more annual patients than there are residents in all of the Houston MSA. And I am sure you have heard of some of the more prominent hospitals in the district, like M.D. Anderson. It's also the largest medical district in the World. These are all hospitals: Durham's medical prominence comes from the Research Triangle Park which is a major centre of health-related biotechnology. And the major economic asset that put the Golden Triangle on the map. But if I had a serious ailment, I would not go to Durham, I would go to Houston. And certainly not Little Rock. Let's just put this all in perspective for a minute. That is all.
  2. Just one thing. Little Rock is not world-renowned for its medical centers, no more than OKC, Tulsa, Nashville, or Shreveport. Memphis gets a free ride if someone from there chose to make that claim because of St. Jude's, and only because of St. Jude's. The only city in the south that is "world-renowned" for medical centers is Houston. Quite possibly the nation's most advanced city, speaking of medical centers alone.
  3. As an Okie its hard to consider myself a Midwesterner... Especially when you consider Oklahoma's three main ethnic groups: Indian, Hispanic, and Black. OKC's blues history is more on par with Memphis than Wichita (and the jazz/blues and bbq thing is one thing that makes places like St. Louis and KC somewhat southern). The inner city school district in OKC is divided 30/30/40 (40 being Hispanic). The whole idea I think is that OKC doesn't really know where it goes, and the rest of the nation, or at least the US Government, puts it and Texas with the south because having the differently-shaded space between Texas and Arkansas is a little jagged on the eye. Oklahoma is definitely mostly Southern, and then the next likeliest region is the Midwest, then the Great Plains (which OKC is not really "on"), then the Southwest, then just the West. But for the sake of this forum I guess we're Southern. So bear with us, please...
  4. I think OKC is finished with the skyline game. It came back and bit us hard when we got a little overzealous in the 70s--we still have a damn fine skyline though to show for it. Our urban development...well the currently proposed or u/c 2,500 units...are coming more in the way that they came for Denver and Portland. Dense, mid-rise...low-rise. Walkable, pedestrian-friendly communities with lots of street activity. There is no need for major towers except for necessary office space. That's not to say I wouldn't mind a skyscraper here and there, but I would hate to see a ton of new skyscrapers in OKC. Skyscrapers don't help urban activity.
  5. Hello........ OKC, anyone? 1.2 million people and counting...fixing to overtake a few cities in population. 2,500 new downtown units proposed or under construction doesn't hurt either. Plus there's a handful of major new urbanism centers u/c in each suburb by now it seems ... including one in Edmond that will create 25,000 jobs and another in Norman that will be 2.5 mil square feet of just retail when finished ... making it #4 largest shopping center in America upon completion if that isn't outdone by then. And construction is chugging along on all of these projects... Also add to the fact that a recent study named OKC as one of the Top 5 "rising stars" in the biotech community. Having OU in the metro and OSU close to the metro can't hurt either, and for the fine arts aficionados, Oklahoma City University is the nation's premier dance and music school, and the University of Central Oklahoma has the nation's best jazz program--the UCO Jazz Lab is truly renowned. As for the skyline. Well, the skyline is already impeccable for a city of 1.2 mil., and a new scraper hasn't been built in 30 years...and office vacancy is now the lowest its been in 30 years. Nothing over 30 floors will be built until the multi-million-square-foot First National Center, a largely vacant historic high-rise Art Deco landmark, can be filled. It was recently bought and is currently being converted from Class C space to Class A space...and there is practically no Class A space available in downtown. Conversion of historic Art-Deco scrapers in downtown continues to take Class C space off of the chopping block, which is a good thing. Class C space creates the illusion that office space in Downtown OKC is not highly occupied and not in high demand, when in reality there isn't a single piece of very contiguous Class A space in the entire inner city. In the 1990s nobody would be considering OKC a rising star. Crime was really high, unemployment was high, growth was low...downtown was especially dead. Community leaders got together after AA publicly called Indy a better city, and OKC a city no one would want to live in, and devised a plan. Since the completion of the Metropolitan Area Projects a few years ago almost 80 cities nation-wide have copied the precedence set by OKC in real, positive urban renewal. OKC's Bricktown district is the fastest growing entertainment district in the region and puts counterparts in Dallas and Fort Worth to shame. But Bricktown is not the only downtown district coming alive. A 300-unit residential project was just finished this month in the Arts Quarter, and another 200 units opened up last month in the CBD where the Park Harvey Center just got converted into apartments. Mid-Town, north of the CBD, has been bought almost entirely by the same investor who is already very well-underway in his conversion of the district into OKC's version of SoHo--with street retail and housing in almost every abandoned building that he's bought. Including some new additions that will be made to these buildings. North of Bricktown is the "Triangle" area which rests between N. Broadway and I-235, made up by the districts of Deep Deuce (the region's premier jazz/blues colony, home of greats like the Count Basie Orchestra, the Blue Devils, Charlie Christian, and renowned African American authors like Ralph Ellison), The Flatiron (district made up of flatiron-shaped buildings because of the triangular street pattern), and Automobile Alley (a district along North Broadway made up of 2-3 story brick buildings that used to be showrooms for car dealers). This is where most of the new residential construction in downtown is, which ranges from dozens of new brownstones being built, to numerous mid-rise loft projects, and even a high-rise hotel. One development, The Triangle, will have 700 units when finished. The most exciting news is south of the CBD however...where the I-40 Crosstown Land Bridge over downtown is being demolished and replaced by a new focal point avenue and I-40 is being rerouted south of downtown, opening up downtown for southward expansion for the first time in a while. It's estimated that over the next 10 years there will be 4,000 new units announced in this area--which is about half of the estimated residential unit count for the next ten years. This area south of downtown, referred to as DoSo and Riverside, will also feature a new convention center and a new light rail hub that will be a part of the Maps III initiative that is about to be unveiled. A new central park will also be built in the heart of this area to link the Myriad Gardens to the parks along the Oklahoma River. The new American Indian Cultural Center across the river from downtown will be the premier museum for Indian culture in America. It will feature multiple Smithsonian-affiliated gallery areas, several promontories (from which you should have an impeccable downtown view across the river) and a resort hotel. A 5-star hotel is in the works for Bricktown, but this will be the first museum hotel in the metro. Also north of downtown is the State Capitol, east of I-235. It's located in the median of the Lincoln Blvd / NW 23rd Street interchange. Along Lincoln Boulevard is a massive building plan being undertaken by the Department of Central Services to relocate state agencies scattered in office buildings around the metro to their own facilities along Lincoln Blvd. So far there are 4 new state buildings proposed for the next year, and the building campaign will aim to build at least 3 new buildings each year for the next 15 years. The design work is being handled by the premier firm for urban architecture in OKC, TAParchitecture (which is investing in many of their own urban projects themselves). Add to all of this that Dell recently put 5,000 jobs in OKC, Boeing is relocating some of its Wichita ops to OKC, and Will Rogers World Airport has added non-stop air service to more cities than any other mid-major market in the country. Doesn't hurt that OKC unemployment is currently one of the lowest in the country and that Forbes, Expansion Management, and others have been ranking OKC in their Top 20, in some cases the Top 10, for the last five years. And while OKC's growing so fast right now, 1/5 of all of the jobs are government related. There are more State of OK jobs alone in OKC than Topeka, KS has entire workforce, and Jefferson City, MO has in entire population. Add OU, UCO, schools, municipal govt, the FAA, and the Air Force's main maintenance center, Tinker Field which employs around 30,000 alone. With 1/5 of OKC's workforce being govt jobs that means a very high degree of stability--something that hasn't always been a guarantee for OKC (with the cyclical boom or bust nature of the energy industry). By the way...OKC is getting out of the oil industry. There isn't a single Fortune 500 company in OKC that specializes in just oil. Chesapeake and Devon are among the nation's largest drillers for natural gas and other energy resources, BOk Financial is one of the nation's larger financial conglomerates, maybe you all have heard of Hobby Lobby and Sonic...and the list goes on. OKC is even home to the nation's largest Latino-owned business. Being one of the main areas for biotech growth and being a national center for aviation and government bureaucracy related to aviation has been a great way to grow our economy and diversify beyond the oil industry. Not that oil wasn't good to us...but it's time to move on. Oh by the way. Maybe you've heard...we're getting an NBA team, and the NHL and MLB have also expressed interest in having a team in OKC. In case you've never seen the OKC skyline, this is what she looks like: And here's a little love to Tulseetown:
  6. So you mean you've gotten all your old pics up?
  7. Good. Haven't you taken that shot before?
  8. There a person who posted some pics of the Classen, a new residential high rise conversion, here's one: note: that's not one of mine, this is from panorama99 on urbanok a.k.a. trolleygirl2 on DFW urban.
  9. I'll take today. JBrown, so you know, all of your older photos aren't visible anymore... and I also hope you opt to do this pic a day over at uo too. And thirdly (lol) I hope you don't mind if I add shots in here on days you forget. Here goes. That was a very nice walk one morning through Bricktown.
  10. Everything will continue because the deals were already set in stone and signed as far as the buildings go. The total development of those deals was not in stone however, so that's why it was best to keep undercover and such.
  11. I wonder if it will still be named after Kerr McGee?
  12. Same here. Lived there for almot 2 decades tho. LOVE THAT shot with the Victorian buildings there at the bottom!
  13. Thanks for clearing that up for me.
  14. Okie

    Oklahoma Off-Topic

    The suggestion was simply handed off to the State Leg. by a Route 66 interest group if I remember right.
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