Officials break ground on MAPS 3’s Scissortail Park
Mayor Mick Cornett and other Oklahoma City leaders broke ground Thursday on the transformative MAPS 3 Park, revealing Scissortail Park as the name residents chose in a public online vote.
Construction on Scissortail Park’s 40-acre upper section is under way, with scheduled completion in spring 2019.
“I want to thank the Oklahoma City voters who approved MAPS 3 in 2009 for having the vision and confidence to take on a project like Scissortail Park,” said Mayor Cornett. “This park will be a community cornerstone for generations.”
The upper section will stretch from the future Oklahoma City Boulevard south to Interstate 40, where the Skydance Bridge will connect it to the 30-acre lower section extending to SW 15th Street on the north shore of the Oklahoma River.
Design work on the lower section is ongoing, and construction is scheduled to be finished in 2021.
Mayor Cornett and the City Council invited residents to help name the park this spring, receiving more than 5,000 name ideas online. A committee narrowed it to six names, which were put to a public online vote that ended June 14. Scissortail Park emerged as the winner.
Events, open spaces and more
An oval great lawn is the focus of the northernmost reaches of Scissortail Park, with a covered stage and space for 15,000 visitors. The stage, developed with the help of local performing arts groups, will serve as a centerpiece for events at the park.
South of the great lawn is a 3 ½ acre lake, with a boathouse for paddle boat rentals and a pedestrian bridge spanning part of it for a picturesque view of Oklahoma City’s new urban jewel.
Family picnic spaces, covered event pavilions and seating areas, a playground and a fountain are also included in the north section.
A long, tree lined promenade along the park’s eastern edge will pass in front of the future MAPS 3 Convention Center, leading to the Skydance Bridge and easy access to the south section of the park. More walking paths will guide pedestrians through the park, and all walkways and other amenities in the park will be ADA-compliant.
Historic, art deco Union Station sits on the upper park’s southern edge. The City plans to explore possible partnerships for redeveloping the building with the park in mind.
Sustainable plant use
Plants in Scissortail Park were chosen for Oklahoma’s climate and will provide beauty, color and a natural, sustainable setting for visitors.
Oak trees, redbud trees and lacebark elms will be planted during construction and grow to provide more shade and natural character to the park.
Switchgrass, lilies, sagebrush, lavender, coneflowers, black-eyed Susans, yuccas and rosemary are a few examples of plant life in the park.
Arrangements will provide distinct, multisensory experiences for visitors.
About MAPS 3
MAPS 3 is a $777 million, debt-free capital improvement program to improve the quality of life in Oklahoma City. It is funded by a 1-cent sales tax initiative that began in April 2010 and ends Dec. 31. MAPS 3 funds eight projects: Downtown Convention Center, Downtown Public Park, Modern Streetcar/Transit, Oklahoma River Improvements, Oklahoma State Fairgrounds Improvements, Senior Health and Wellness Centers, Trails and Sidewalks.
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