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City asks for community input on north Tulsa development

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Posted at 5:45 PM, Oct 28, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-28 19:02:27-04

TULSA, Okla. — The City of Tulsa is asking for community input on a master plan for the development of the Kirkpatrick Heights/Greenwood areas in north Tulsa.

Developers held a community meeting Thursday evening at the Greenwood Cultural Center. Those creating the master plan for this development say it’s important to hear the community’s vision and priorities for this area.

The City of Tulsa, the Tulsa Authority for Economic Opportunity, and the Tulsa Development Authority are working to develop three different sections of land in the Kirkpatrick Heights/Greenwood areas. It’s 56 acres in total.

The largest site is west of OSU-Tulsa and north of I-244. The second is the land next to Vernon AME Church. The third is the land just north of that second site, near Pine Street.

As developers work on the master plan, an important piece of the project is getting input from the community.

“There’s lots of distrust and fear that this is the final frontier of gentrification," said Ashley Philippsen.

"People fear erasure. So, it’s important that we have a process that is not superficial.”

Philippsen is a member of the 11-person leadership committee guiding the development process. She said they have an idea to turn the land into a mixed-use development and create more affordable housing.

“There’s also a call to improve the public realm and public space," Philippsen said.

"We want multiple ways for folks to access this. So, how is it walkable? How is it comfortable and vibrant? And how does it mirror the rich history of the space?”

The history of Greenwood is playing an important part in the development.

“Because of the sheer location and the history, from the very beginning, again, we want to bring back the legacy of Black Wall Street," said Rodrigo Rojas, deputy chief of staff for the city of Tulsa.

"We want community ownership.”

Over the next 12 months, developers hope to hear from anyone connected to the land so they can create a space specifically for those who will be using it.

“If you are in this area of the study plan, if you have historical ties to North Tulsa, we want you there," Rojas said. "This is an opportunity to be there from the beginning. To help us, help this leadership committee develop this vision.”

There’s another community meeting on Saturday from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. at the 36th Street North Event Center.

You can learn more and give input online here.

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