TULSA — A new vision for a treasured space. Changes to Turkey Mountain revealed for the first time Thursday night.
Thousands weighed in on how best to preserve and manage the wilderness area. The top two recommendations are to keep the mountain open to everyone, and wild.
Ryan Howell with the River Parks Authority, says, "People don't realize. When they're out there, they think, 'I’m in nature, I’m in beauty.' It's actually a forest killing itself. It's choking itself to death."
Growing plants take over. One of the ways to get rid of them prescribed burns to sections of the mountain over 5 years.
"Millions of acres are burned intentionally every year in Oklahoma. We want to bring that to Turkey Mountain to provide a healthier habitat."
Also on the plan: more parking, easier entry for those with mobility concerns, and work to the trails.
Mountain biker, Susan Young, says, "It's had some wetness, this year, and some erosion. We've avoided the trails to help the trails out."
There are pending additions to the mountain: swimming holes, picnic areas, and camping grounds are just a few.
First on the to-do list is deciding where to focus first, then, finding the money.
Howell says, "Apply for potential grants from the federal level, the state level, to private grants. Then, we can look at tax packages to see if taxpayers want to provide funding for that."
Howell says Tulsans should start to see action in the next two to five years.
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