Local & Regional
Wed July 29, 2009
Which Way Tulsa?
By John Durkee
Tulsa, OK – Against a backdrop of approximately 200 table-sized workshop maps filled with the ideas of over 1,500 Tulsans, City officials gathered in the Grand Lobby of the BOK Arena to announce the results of a new survey completed by over 5,500 Tulsans. The survey results indicated that the public strongly supports land use and transportation changes in the coming decades. Citizen input from these surveys will be combined with other research and analysis to develop a new comprehensive plan.
"The input we received from Tulsans about their future vision for our city is invaluable," said Mayor Kathy Taylor. "This will be pivotal in shaping Tulsa's comprehensive plan."
A diverse geographic and ethnic cross-section of Tulsa's population completed the surveys over the course of about a month. Almost half of the respondents identified Scenario D, the most downtown-focused scenario, as their favorite. In terms of transportation, the largest numbers of respondents identified building a light rail and streetcar system as important to them.
"These numbers are record-setting," said John Fregonese, president of the firm leading the planning effort. "The strong response from people of all walks of life demonstrates how strongly all Tulsans want to have a say in the future of their city."
This survey builds on the input from over 1,500 public workshop participants in fall 2008 who identified common themes and directions for Tulsa. These themes were represented in four alternative scenarios that represent different ways that Tulsa could accommodate projected population and employment growth while preserving the community's values. The recently completed surveys gauged citizen opinions of these growth scenarios. These opinions will be used to create a new vision and plan for the city, along with the strategies required to get Tulsa to its desired future. For more information on the survey results, please see www.PLANiTULSA.org.
PLANiTULSA is a two-year, community-wide planning process with an emphasis on inclusive citizen engagement to update the current comprehensive plan, which was completed in 1978. It will result in a vision of how Tulsans want their city to develop and grow during the next 30 years and action items to achieve that vision. The comprehensive plan provides city officials, citizens and business owners with a framework for development that allows for more uniform, timely and coordinated decisions.
For more information or to get involved, visit www.PLANiTULSA.org.