The Norman Transcript

Breaking News


August 25, 2013

Late proposals to change Lindsey Street plans complicate issue

NORMAN — Two groups normally at odds — the Norman Developers Council and self-proclaimed slow growth advocates — are finally agreeing on something. Both groups want Lindsey Street to become a landscaped boulevard with single lane traffic each way, roundabouts at intersections, and walkability to include future zoning for mixed-use, high density developments.

The slow growth advocates are dreaming of reduced speed limits, more trees, and sidewalk cafes.

Developers are seeing dollar signs and quality of life projects.

These proposed changes have come late in the planning process, however. Council member Tom Kovach represents Ward 2 where the primary work will occur on Lindsey. Kovach is concerned that voters were sold a different vision of Lindsey.

The city engineers and contracted engineering firms are scrambling to answer questions that have arisen as a result of proposed changes in the overall vision for Lindsey. The clock is ticking and the dollars are adding up. So far, about $100,000 extra has been tallied up in design fees to address the recent dialogue around Norman’s most famous street.

Birth of a new vision for Lindsey: Representatives from the University of Oklahoma participated in stakeholder meetings throughout 2012. In March 2012, Blair Humphreys, executive director for OU’s Institute for Quality Communities became involved in the discussions.

“IQC was the first group we contacted at the mayor’s request,” said Norman Public Works Director Shawn O’Leary. “We welcomed it.”

The IQC would later host Dan Burden of Walkable and Livable Communities to bring fresh ideas to the visioning process. OU President David Boren became an advocate of a slower moving Lindsey with roundabouts instead of signals to allow a continuous flow of traffic. Boren also supported landscaped medians.

The landscaped median has been embraced, but roundabouts created design problems for engineers.

City engineering report: The city design team determined that two lane roundabouts would take too much right of way and be too costly to be feasible. Boren and the IQC team responded with new ideas. The Lindsey vision continues to evolve as a result of that ongoing dialogue.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
  • Congressman Cole reflects on recovery

    Congressman Tom Cole’s home in Moore was not hit by the May 20 tornado but it came pretty close. His wife has made it clear she wants a saferoom, he said. In a visit to the Transcript on Friday afternoon, Cole talked about tornado ...

    April 19, 2014

  • Oklahoma Water Resources Board grants Norman low-interest loan for facility upgrade

    Norman has been authorized for a $50.3 million loan from the Oklahoma Water Resources Board to fund Phase 2 of the Norman Water Reclamation Facility upgrade. “It’s the single largest loan OWRB has made,” Norman Mayor Cindy Rosenthal said. ...

    April 17, 2014

  • General fund continues to decline as expenses exceed anticipated revenues

    Norman’s expenses will again outstrip projected revenue in the current budget before the city council. The budget for the fiscal year that starts in July and ends June 30, 2015, projects $210,982,020 in total revenues and $213,436,778 in ...

    April 16, 2014

  • County hears presentation on employment opportunities

    The Cleveland County Board of Commissioners listened to a presentation Monday to consider partnering with a nonprofit that provides employment opportunities for prison inmates re-entering the community. Patrick Viklund, Center for ...

    April 15, 2014

  • Drilling operation shows policy gap

    While Norman residents are being encouraged to use rain barrels, a Texas oil and gas company is pumping thousands of gallons of treated drinking water into the ground. The Oklahoma Corporation Commission controls permits for drilling, ...

    April 12, 2014

  • Filings finished

    In addition to Ward 2 Norman City Council candidates Clint Williams and Aliesha Karjala several federal, state and county officials will be on the June 24 ballots. Filing for offices that serve Cleveland County residents are: · ...

    April 12, 2014

  • Fracking review online

    The Oklahoma Hydraulic Fracturing State Review is available on the Corporation Commission’s website, Completed in 2011 by a non-profit, multi-stakeholder organization, State Review of Oil and Natural Gas Environmental ...

    April 12, 2014

  • Candidates file for state and federal positions Thursday

    New filings on Thursday include: ; ...

    April 11, 2014

  • City briefs

    Egg hunt today  Norman’s Easter Egg Hunt will be today at Andrews Park. Activities — including moon bounces, games, giveaways and Easter Bunny photos (bring your own camera) — will start at 5:30 p.m....

    April 11, 2014

  • Norman residents among those seeking to run for county, state offices in first day of filing

    Filing for county and state offices started Wednesday and continues from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. today and Friday. A handful of Democrats and a trickle of Independents vye with a field heavy-laden with Republican candidates. There are few ...

    April 10, 2014