The view from a seven-year downtown resident


A perspective, part of an interesting exchange, over at the TulsaNow forum, from someone who actually lives downtown.

My position on the ballot (yeah or nah) aside, I live inside the IDL.

Have for 7 years now.
Right on the edge of all the wonderful new bars. (Wonderful, maybe if I were still in my 20's)

Unless you live here, and suffer the back lash of confused people driving the wrong way on one way's, with their cars radio cranked to "11" late into the night, and all the subsequent problems, that arise from a short fall of law enforcement, just to name a few, your only seeing the gloss of this "Exciting reality".

Austins' 6 street battle between housing and the night life, is a great example of what we are about to additionally suffer, should there ever be rooftops built for people to actually start living here.

The not yet "24/7" party scene is already loud: which carries for miles. It is also already riddled with issues that contradicts the concept of a nice place to call "home" at 3:00AM.

What's being created in the district, this resurgence, is showing signs that we, on the dimly lit cracked up sidewalks, should be addressing on a loftier level. Some people are and they should be heard out - carefully.

But don't get me wrong: I like walking over for a cold one (during the day) on occasion and personally believe bars serve an important function. (Unlike those in structures 300 feet away)

NO GROW ZONE is a one huge and obvious solution to ever increasing roadways to maintain, expanding infrastructure, pocket slums, infill hesitations, over taxed law enforcement patrolling crime areas, pollution, and a host of other issues. They stop sprawl on a dime.

Yes, developers can build, build all they want -it'd be nice if there is someone out there to tell them how to do it intelligently. If there is, that person must be on an extended vacation - but no building past this line.

At that point they'll have to start looking back into the city itself for new locations.

Which brings in the next set of issues we have to face. With the concept of Eminent domain, at the forefront.

This "little" item is the death of any private investment, on the grass roots level. I have people stop me at the front door wanting to find a similar place of their own, almost daily, for years now.

I tell them a short story.

The area is a target zone for a slew of shifting ideas that one day can have a Library sitting where your home once was, the next an Arena, day after that it's a parking lot.
The Arby's idea was said to generate many jobs.

About this time they say, "well, they have to pay you good money for your place!".

Wrong. There is no way to restore a building, even excluding labor cost, and hope to get anywhere close to breaking even.

NOTE: The price is fair market value, of the land, regardless of what sits on it. You should try it sometime. Sit down, do the math, imagine your home (not house) where you memories are housed, the place that shelters you and your family, the safest place on the p[lanet that you know of, is about to disappear for a few dollars a foot. Second thought, don't try it. It makes one very very excitable. And right now we need calmer talking heads, no?

So then I pick up where I left off in the story..."The thing is if you could repair your car, which is worth $25,000. for $5,000.00 but stood the chance of it being legaly repossed, because the finace company had a better use for the car, and told you you would recieve $1,000. period, see you later", would you repair the car?

Maybe, maybe not.

At that point the eager loft hunter, who has a strong interest in living down here, and are mostly people I would like to have as nieghbors, usually starts to get the bigger picture. And the conversation shifts to other topics.

Sure, nothing is a safe bet. But to see a rendering of a proposed idea, drawn up by some out of state developer, that hasn't even said "Boo" to you (the land owner) and see a Wal-mart parking lot, where your 100 year old home is presently standing is dis-heartening, to say the least.
To say the most would be a very long rant, over many beers at the Blue dome or Caz's, my two favorite places to go when they see fit to let me out of here.

My restoration has been stopped on a dime, and I hate it.
I like the "concepts" on the current ballot, but the wording, order, and means in which to pay for them has made me suspicious and now, very thirsty.

Bottom line is I cannot, in good conscience, vote YES on a 13 year county tax ballot when I may not be living in that county for the 13 years. If My home is razed, I'll be taking my bags of compensating peanuts somewhere else. I refuse to live in a city that follows up the major mistake of building the hugmougous jail inside this precsis confined space with notions of a Wal-mart. How embarressing is that? (Which probably makes the fear mongers in here very happy to hear) jdb

About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on August 21, 2003 10:10 PM.

"Vision 2025" isn't forward thinking was the previous entry in this blog.

Terry Simonson on the economic recovery and the sales tax is the next entry in this blog.

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