"I am glad there are people like TYProle and the others who obviously care about about Tulsa or they wouldn't take the time and effort to comment so passionately on here. Thank you. Now, in response to "practice what you preach". What I preach, is that we want diversity of living styles in this city and region. I often say that we have some of the best, and most affordable, suburan neighborhoods in the world imo. And Tulsa should be proud of that. But, again, what we do not offer in this city is any "Urban Village" type living that we can be equally proud of, and that more and more people want these days. And we lose out as a city because of that. I am not so selfish as to believe that the way I live now, in a single family detatched home, is the way everyone should want to live. My own family runs the gamut from some of the sweetest, salt of the earth, old time Okies, to more wealthy "city slicker" types. I love and care about them all and wish that Tulsa were able to be a city in which ALL of them could find their ideal place to live. I think most families would also like that. How that makes me an "urbanist elite" I do not know?
Btw, I live just north of I-44 near Yale, by the Promenade Mall and OU Tulsa, and one of the reasons I chose this particular area was precisely because I can walk or bike to shopping, restaurants, bookstore, movies, trails, even the grocery store and do so quite often. If you check out "Walkscore" online you will find that this area has one of the highest walkscores of any in the city even better than Brookside and Cherry Street. Some may think that it's a shame that this area is one of the "best we have to offer" in that respect. But, I did the best I thought I could at the time. Now, over the years, I have come to realize that I would indeed like to live closer to, or even in, downtown someday. When exactly that can best happen I don't know yet.
Affordable housing... On the one hand people argue that this Form Based Code zoning won't work, then on the other some argue that it will work so well that it will push out all the affordable housing in the area. To the latter,,,, we have LOTS of affordable housing in Tulsa, a rapturous, bountiful, blessing of it. Changing this small, less than one percent, area of the city will not even come close to somehow destroying the majority of all the affordable housing in the city or in the core of the city so please do not worry about that. Check a Zillow map of nearby areas and you will see that is true. However, yes indeed in this small area, new housing will go in. And yes likely a good portion of it will not be affordable to everyone. But again, this isn't for everyone, not everyone wants that type of lifestyle just like not everyone wants whats there now, we are just trying to create a great place in our city for those people who do want this particular type of, high quality, urban lifestyle. And too there are things you can do in the core that can bring urban living costs down. For instance, with Form Based Codes there are no minimum parking requirements and thus if someone is building for example an apartment building they arent forced to add as much parking. You can cut around 20% off the cost of such a building by not having to have all the parking. This can lower the rent. Plus, if you create a good quality, pedestrian friendly area like this (right near downtown and near Cherry Street and Brookside), that will be as successful as you apparently believe it will be, then you will not have to have a car, which makes living there all that more affordable.
Plus, as I have stated before, "Transit Friendly" and "Pedestrian Friendly" are the same thing. Your transit is only as good as your pedestrian friendly areas are. As it stands our transit is quite ineffective. Imagine your a poor person who uses transit and wants to go to the doctor or to the grocery store, a drug store, shopping, to work, etc. As it stands you likely have to go only to one place at a time and then catch a bus to the next place or do that another day. Or you have to bike or walk over large distances through areas that are not comfortable to walk and bike through. Now imagine being able to go to a mixed use area where its easy to get to a hospital, shopping, grocery, all kinds of potential work from manufacturing to "cafes and baristas" or Mc Donalds, print shop, mail/shipping office, drug store, etc. etc. etc. You will be able to take care of a lot of things in one, easy to get around in area.
I met a young man a few years ago that had recently found himelf in Tulsa, through circumstances I don't exactly recall. But he was poor, lived in a duplex in north Tulsa, did not have a car, and rode his bike over 4 miles, one way, each day to work. He was from back east and I remember him saying that when he got off the bus in downtown Tulsa that first time, he felt trapped and isolated here. It was so hard to get around in Tulsa he said without a car and because of the bus routes and schedules he could not get to the job he had found that way so rode his bike. Now, no he wouldn't have been able to afford housing in the Form Based Code area, BUT, that area would have been the closest area to where he lived where he could do all of those things I mentioned above. These types of areas help make transit more effective for everyone and imo would have made his life here in Tulsa a little easier.
As to my art. The only conformation I need in respect to my talent is the fact that people pay me for it, enough so that I have bought a house, a car, can travel and have made a decent living off of it for over 20 years. Not bad for a "wanna be" "pretend" artist. Would all that Tuscan/French stuff I paint on the walls and ceilings in those Mc Mansions be my first choice to paint these days? No, but hey it pays the bills, and I am smart enough to keep doing that as long as it does lol. Thanks Much, WilliamTheArtist."