A vibrant urban cultural life is an important city asset. Over the past decade, Oklahoma City has focused substantial economic development and revitalization efforts and resources on enhancing the city’s “creative” character, especially downtown. In 2012, the Office of Arts & Cultural Affairs was established as a component of the Administration of the Planning Department to work with the Arts Commission, oversee the coordination of the 1% for Arts ordinance, facilitate cultural planning and implementation, and facilitate relationships between artists, cultural organizations, and governmental and civic organizations.
Oklahoma City leaders know that arts and cultural investments make cities great places to live, to travel and study, and more attractive for economic development. Their wisdom has been supported by recent national studies that have found that cities with these types of community and economic benefits instill a sense of pride and loyalty in citizens often resulting in faster growing creative economies.