The Norman Transcript

Opinion

December 23, 2012

City favors compatible building heights

NORMAN — Editor, The Transcript:

In your Dec. 18 news article titled “High-density zoning district currently under construction,” I was accurately characterized as “adamant” about a three-story height limit on Campus Corner for new residential development. The article, however, did not have the space to explain how I carefully arrived at this position.

First, a preference for three-story heights on Campus Corner is the strongly held opinion of our community. The city invited the entire community and our development partners to six dialogues on what high-density housing means, where it might be located, how it might look and how it might affect parking, infrastructure and traffic.

At the sixth and final dialogue, attendees expressed their opinions using a voting system devised by the city. This vote demonstrated that our community favors a three-story height limit on Campus Corner by a factor of 3 to 1. The city’s final report sums it up nicely: “Participants were nearly unanimous in their declaration that overly large buildings in the wrong locations are undesirable.”

Second, numerous architects have come forward to say unequivocally that a three-story height limit is right for Campus Corner. These individuals are actively engaged in development projects in the core area and know this is feasible for their industry.

One such architect described the prospect of designing new higher-density housing for Campus Corner as “exciting.” A second asked that new projects honor the Campus Corner landmarks of Whitehand Hall and McFarlin Church.

The six-story buildings (75 feet tall) preferred by our partners in the development community simply are not compatible with the architecture and “sense of place” on Campus Corner.

Third, a reasonable height limit is the conservative approach to altering Campus Corner. No one can say what the future holds. So, a three-story height limit is our best initial approach. After sufficient time has passed to gauge the effectiveness of this policy, the community can revisit the decision and increase the limit if needed.

GREG JUNGMAN

Norman City Council, Ward 4

For local news and more, subscribe to The Norman Transcript Smart Edition, or our print edition.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Opinion
  • Thanks for 125 years

    Newspapers give soul to a community. They inform and engage readers. They entertain and sometimes persuade. They are changing, too....

    July 11, 2014

  • Voting for our priorities

    Editor, The Transcript: Ok, let me see if I’ve got this straight. When the federal government ended its program of providing $13-$16 million in surplus equipment each year to fire departments, our state and congressional leaders ...

    July 11, 2014

  • U.S. loss was a win back home

    The 2014 World Cup is over for America. The United States was knocked out in the Round of 16 by Belgium, 2-1, in a match with extra time that was intoxicating and crushing....

    July 10, 2014

  • Court should apply brakes

    The Supreme Court is heading down a frightening path and should apply the brakes....

    July 10, 2014

  • Music and OU football game best choices

    The Huffington Post this week picked the Norman Music Festival as the one thing to do if you come to Oklahoma. The spring festival, started in 2008 as a regional concert featuring several bands, has grown every year....

    July 10, 2014

  • Landlines going away

    Will the telephone landline go the way of the pay telephone? That seems to be the case, according to a government study released this week....

    July 9, 2014

  • Walls coming down

    Pardon the pun but it seems almost criminal to some to tear down a jail built less than 30 years ago. But then again, public jails have limited uses beyond incarceration and they take a beating by the occupants....

    July 9, 2014

  • Getting out the vote

    Both sides of the state’s political aisle have been known to use state questions to bring out the vote in the November General Election. A cockfighting issue in 2002 brought out extra rural Democrats and helped propel Brad Henry into the ...

    July 8, 2014

  • Water rationing in effect

    June’s rainfall and cooler temperatures have been a blessing for central Oklahoma, but now that the summer heat has arrived and the rains have slowed, Norman’s water usage is climbing....

    July 8, 2014

  • Follow as colleges do conference shuffle

    The most tenured coach at the University of Louisville might not find joining a new athletic conference so special. But for tennis coach Rex Ecarma, the Cardinals' move is a moment to celebrate....

    July 8, 2014