TULSA, Okla. — Most everyone these days must suffer through the growing pains of necessary but frustrating city construction projects, whether for streets or utilities.
A north Tulsa neighborhood has known those pains all too well for several months.
“This is where I work, this is where I worship, this is where I lead in this community," Justin Daniels says.
Daniels says he certainly appreciates the long needed, but time-consuming work being done here to improve his neighborhood, his home.
Crews are replacing all the gas lines and water lines, and other utilities.
“In this community, I know that’s good for property values, for the future, I also know it’s good for the sustainability for my property.”
But with progress, comes pain. All the digging, all the dirt and all the dust.
“We’ve lived in a dust bowl for almost six months now," Daniels says. "We have to dust down our house two or three times a day because all of this dust goes through the vents, goes through the doors, yeah, it’s a challenge.”
Especially for his two young children, 4 years old and 6 years old, who both have asthma. He says he fears it’s causing flareups.
“Hey, I get it right, we have a roof over our head, it’s not the end of the world, but protracted over time, it becomes very frustrating.”
The crushed and cracked concrete, too, and the falling fences, and the mangled mailboxes, from all the heavy equipment being used. All the temporary damage that comes with a massive improvement project, involving several city departments, utility companies and private contractors,
Daniels says he can’t get answers as to when the project will be complete, and who will be responsible for the cleanup and repairs after.
“I’ve done everything that I can do, which was call the city, call the Mayor’s Action Line, call 211, call ONG, call the water company and everyone is pointing fingers at each other.”
Finally, Daniels called the Problem Solvers, and we touched base with the city, to get answers for him and his neighbors. To be clear, they’re grateful for the improvement project in their neighborhood. They just want some kind of timetable, as to when life will get back to normal.
“If we knew, hey, by Nov. 1, everything should be done, we could prepare for that, and kind of prepare our hearts and minds to that reality," Daniels says.
We found out the project and cleanup are expected to be completed by next June. Meanwhile, crews water down the streets to calm the dirt, and settle the dust.
All to help lessen the inconvenient impact of this neighborhood’s version, of an Oklahoma dustbowl. The city has provided a map with more information about that particular project.
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