The Arts District is home to several cultural destinations, including the Civic Center Music Hall, the Oklahoma City Museum of Art, the Norick Library and the newly-renovated Myriad Botanical Gardens and Crystal Bridge Tropical Conservatory. The Civic Center Music Hall features a unique art deco motif and is a popular venue for concerts and other performing arts events. The Oklahoma City Museum of Art showcases notable paintings and pieces of sculpture, including the largest display of Chihuly glass in the world. Project 180 street improvements currently underway will enhance the district’s appearance as well as lead to a better environment for walking and bicycling downtown.
Automobile Alley—which runs along North Broadway from 13th Street to 4th Street—is a mixed-use neighborhood of offices, residences, restaurants and retail. Beginning in the 1920s, Broadway became known for the more than 50 automobile dealers located in the area. Over time, the area went into decline, but today, the district is enjoying an economic resurgence and revitalization along with the rest of downtown. The Planning Department continues to work with area stakeholders in further promoting redevelopment opportunities.
Bricktown has become Oklahoma City’s premiere entertainment district. For several decades the warehouse district sat dilapidated and underused. With the passage of the MAPS initiative in 1993, the City of Oklahoma City constructed the Bricktown Ballpark and a one-mile canal that connects the north Bricktown area with the Chesapeake Boathouse along the Oklahoma River. In the last decade, BassPro Shops, Harkins Theater, several residences, restaurants and offices have moved into Bricktown making the district one of the most unique areas in the state. City planners continue to assist property owners in improving Bricktown’s appearance and ensuring the district’s future viability through efforts such as the Bricktown Parking Study and the Bricktown Strategic Plan.
The Central Business District is home to some of Oklahoma City’s largest companies. Currently, Devon Energy is constructing a 50 story tower in the heart of the district, which will be the tallest structure in Oklahoma once completed in 2012. Project 180 street improvements are also transforming the area into a vibrant urban core. The Planning Department is working to further develop the district by improving appearance, transportation and street activity.
Known for its African-American heritage, Deep Deuce is an urban neighborhood located north of Bricktown. During the 1940s and 1950s, the area was a hotbed of jazz music and African-American culture. Today, the neighborhood is undergoing a renaissance with many large-scale apartments and condominiums. The historic Calvary Baptist Church remains in the neighborhood as a community treasure. City planners are currently providing technical assistance to developers wishing to build in the area in an effort to increase mixed-use infill and density.
The Film Exchange District is one of the few remaining film exchanges left in the country. During statehood through the 1960s, major movie corporations established film exchanges to distribute and screen films along Sheridan Ave., which was affectionately referred to as Film Row. In the 1970s, movie corporations left town as the industry declined, and the area fell into neglect. In the early 2000s, city planners worked with stakeholders to turn the area around. Recently, extensive streetscaping celebrating the district’s movie heritage has transformed the area. The Film Exchange is now home to several film-oriented and design-focused businesses. The Planning Department continues to assist in revitalizing the area.
The Park Plaza is a redeveloping office district in downtown Oklahoma City. Area property owners in recent years have renovated many dilapidated offices spaces. In the last five years, the City has worked to enhance the appearance of the area with street improvements unique to the area.
In 2006, the City of Oklahoma City undertook an ambitious planning process to redevelop 750 acres of underutilized land between the core of downtown to the shore of the Oklahoma River, known as Core to Shore. The relocation of the I-40 Crosstown Expressway creates an opportunity to redevelop this area. Efforts are now underway to build and connect a series of neighborhoods, parks, and economic opportunities that will reinvent downtown Oklahoma City, leading to new jobs and a higher quality of life for residents. With passage of the MAPS 3 initiative, the City is moving forward with building the Central Park, a major component of the Core to Shore plan. The Planning Department is currently providing assistance to develop areas alongside the Central Park.
In 2005, the American Institute of Architects Sustainable Design Assessment Team (SDAT) completed a report that proposed sustainable new development along East Reno. The land includes several Brownfields as many of the City’s first oil fields were discovered in the area. However, the area does contain significant assets such as the American Indian Cultural Center and Boathouse Row. Major planning efforts include linking the cultural center to downtown by creating a pedestrian friendly transit corridor. The Planning Department is currently working with property owners to transform Brownfields properties and to enhance the appearance of the area.
Home to the historic Plaza Court building and St. Anthony Hospital, Midtown includes a mix of residential and business neighborhoods. The oldest homes date back to the months immediately following the Land Run in 1889; some new apartments and condominiums have been built over the past twenty years. More than 90% of the residential properties are rented. Read more about Midtown here.
The 10th Street Medical Business District (MBD) corridor on the northern edge of downtown spans from St. Anthony Hospital to the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center and the Presbyterian Health Foundation Research Park. The MBD also sits within Midtown and Automobile Alley. City planners are working to create greater connectivity between the medical faculties while enabling greater economic development opportunities in the area. Read more about MBD here.