Oklahoma City completes first phase of its $132 million, 70-acre downtown park

The completed first phase of Scissortail Park, with the Scissortail Bridge protruding in the back (Courtesy Scissortail Park)

As for this autumn, Oklahoma City can brag the origins of an extraordinary 70-acre public playground created by Hargreaves Associates right in the town’s downtown core. Scissortail Park, the 36-acre first phase of which launched in belated September, is a feat of publicly-funded, general public area tasks in a conservative town which have struggled to offer it self a worldwide title and gives its residents an even more powerful, metropolitan environment. “It’s an aspirational playground, for the reason that it is the sort of amenity that folks in Oklahoma City utilized to assume just current various other places,” Oklahoma City Mayor David Holt told Citylab. 

The $132 million playground includes a pond and boathouse, a five-acre yard with a principal phase and sitting for 25,000 men and women, playgrounds, woodlands, home gardens, promenades, puppy areas, and occasion pavilions. In a nutshell, it is an important, long-awaited asset for the 1.25 million residents within the Oklahoma City metro area.  The gardening design functions circular plots, dubbed lens home gardens, with flowers differing from cactuses to lawn. “We like to hit formal techniques [that] tend to be demonstrably discernible as manmade. These perfect groups showed up inside the area of ‘nature.’ [But] this isn’t nature. This might be a made destination. [It’s] form-giving in order to make a spot unforgettable,” Mary Margaret Jones, senior key at Hargreaves, informed Citylab. Visitors will also be fulfilled with a glowing 45-foot-tall tower designed by Butzer Architects and Urbanism, evoking a campfire in mention of the town’s spot into the reputation for westward growth and colonization. 

Waterside wooden promenade at night at Scissortail Park

The city skyline plays background into the park’s promenade. (Courtesy Scissortail Park)

While the orifice on September 27 marked the conclusion regarding the very first area, building from the last half is planned to start in 2020. The finished playground will undoubtedly be bisected because of the I-40, because of the currently completed Scissortail Bridge linking top of the and reduced halves regarding the playground. Expanding through the downtown core into the shores regarding the Oklahoma River once finished, Scissortail Park will undoubtedly be an important success for the town’s “Core to Shore” agenda to urbanize the underutilized and disconnected downtown and riverfront area. 

Close-up photo of circular island lawns in Scissortail Park

Close up of the park’s lens home gardens (Courtesy Scissortail Park)

The task had been financed by a distinctive income tax scheme labeled as Metropolitan Area Projects (MAPS) that has been very first enacted in 1993 to invest in urban revitalization and enhancement tasks. MAPS, a short-term voter-approved one-cent product sales income tax, increased an overall total of  $777 million between 2010 and 2017, and also the resources will undoubtedly be made use of to make a convention center, streetcars, senior facilities, and a number of metropolitan area improvements, aswell as doing Scissortail Park. Not only is it an achievement itself, the playground appears as a fruitful illustration of doing an ambitious general public works task even yet in a conservative governmental weather.