The Power of Downtowns

Here’s a great interview with the Mayor of Oklahoma City, Mick Cornett, on the power of downtowns.

Here are some snippets:

“Fundamentally, most people in your city care about two things: They care about their neighborhood and their downtown. A city gets its identity from its core. One of the reasons Oklahoma City succeeded, now looking back 20 years, is that we convinced people who live in the suburbs that the quality of life downtown is important. We’ve convinced them their quality of life is directly related to the intensity of the core, that you can’t be a suburb of nothing.”

“These jogging and biking trails are instrumental to creating the city that we want our kids to grow up in. We have now made an incredible amount of infrastructure improvements downtown, improving the walkability of our core city.”

“We are becoming a city where people want to get out and walk, which is really important. For decades, we created a life where everything revolved around the car. That’s less true today. I hope it’s less true in the coming years.”

He also put Oklahoma City on a diet in 2007. Read the interview to find out how that worked out.

Jan

 

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