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Thread: Plaza District

  1. #226

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by KilgoreTrout View Post
    They posted last night that Pie Junkie (HOME - piejunkie) is moving into the Plaza District. Seems like a good addition in isolation, but the Plaza could really use another full bar...

    If there is anything that OKC lacks to be considered a major city it is a mass of bars in a walkable local area. I've always felt that Saints, a couple bars, a live music place, and then some complimentary restaurant then bars (e.g., the Mule, new pizza place) could creat a nice mass, but it's looking more like they'll just have one bar, which is disappointing. The fact that Tulsa's bar dense, walkable scene (e.g., Blue Dome, Cherry Street, Brookside, Brady District) is dramatically better than OKC's should be a cause for concern as recent college grads see it as a quality of life issue. Bricktown is a good, walkable area, but it's also more geared towards clubs or chain locations. OKC has the market covered on dense local food areas (Midown, 23rd Street, Automobile Alley...), but a similar local bar scene remains spread out and weak.
    I agree. It's difficult to bar hop in OKC because everything is so spread out. OKC needs another dense, concentrated entertainment district in addition to Bricktown. A lot of younger people I know talk about Tulsa as being superior to OKC and this is probably one of the reasons.

    Edit: OKC is seeing significant young professional inmigration right now because of the economy. Young professional hotspots like Seattle, Portland, SF, etc all have very high unemployment and much stiffer job competition than OKC. That said, OKC can't count on that always being the case. Unless the alarmists are right, eventually the rest of the nation will recover and I wonder if new grads will still choose OKC when they have offers in other cities as well.

  2. Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by sidburgess View Post
    We "bar hopped" last night in Bricktown. Not much was open but in Bricktown, it is really easy to just walk door-to-door for drinks and entertainment.

    Bonus, our night ended with pancakes at IHOP.
    Are a majority of the bars in Bricktown now no cover - or do you have to pony up at each one?

  3. #228

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by bchris02 View Post
    I agree. It's difficult to bar hop in OKC because everything is so spread out. OKC needs another dense, concentrated entertainment district in addition to Bricktown. A lot of younger people I know talk about Tulsa as being superior to OKC and this is probably one of the reasons.

    Edit: OKC is seeing significant young professional inmigration right now because of the economy. Young professional hotspots like Seattle, Portland, SF, etc all have very high unemployment and much stiffer job competition than OKC. That said, OKC can't count on that always being the case. Unless the alarmists are right, eventually the rest of the nation will recover and I wonder if new grads will still choose OKC when they have offers in other cities as well.
    I don't know where you guys hang out but the cool bar hopping area is around 51st and Classen, Edna's, Drunken Fry, and Speak Easy are great bars. They may not be next door to each other but we walk to all of them. And one time we walked from Sipango's, Cafe Nova, and The Lobby to them.

  4. #229

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by lasomeday View Post
    I don't know where you guys hang out but the cool bar hopping area is around 51st and Classen, Edna's, Drunken Fry, and Speak Easy are great bars. They may not be next door to each other but we walk to all of them. And one time we walked from Sipango's, Cafe Nova, and The Lobby to them.
    That is probably the best scene in OKC and all you have to do to get from Edna's to the other bars is... WALK ACROSS A HIGHWAY! It's classic OKC. This and Western are the closest you get to a dense, local bar scene. Again, Bricktown is fine, but it's not really geared towards the hip, yuppy crowd. It's more for tourists and club-goers. The young urban scene (from yuppies to hipsters) need a better place to bar hop. Plaza (just Saint's) or Midtown (Louie's, McNellie's, & sometimes the Cafe Do Brazil rooftop bar) would be good options, but bar only places won't open there for some reason. Autmobile Alley is ideally suited for a bar scene, but has zero. 23rd street has potential with Grandad's starting things off... Are the liquor laws to blame? Doesn't Tulsa have the same liquor laws?

  5. #230

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by KilgoreTrout View Post
    That is probably the best scene in OKC and all you have to do to get from Edna's to the other bars is... WALK ACROSS A HIGHWAY! It's classic OKC. This and Western are the closest you get to a dense, local bar scene. Again, Bricktown is fine, but it's not really geared towards the hip, yuppy crowd. It's more for tourists and club-goers. The young urban scene (from yuppies to hipsters) need a better place to bar hop. Plaza (just Saint's) or Midtown (Louie's, McNellie's, & sometimes the Cafe Do Brazil rooftop bar) would be good options, but bar only places won't open there for some reason. Autmobile Alley is ideally suited for a bar scene, but has zero. 23rd street has potential with Grandad's starting things off... Are the liquor laws to blame? Doesn't Tulsa have the same liquor laws?
    I think OKC just doesnt have any good bar entrepreneurs. Its either a dive bar, a large coorporate/chain type place in Bricktown or a restaurant that has a bar. There are really no nice, just strictly a bar type places. Nova is fairly nice but havent been in forever due to the younger and more annoying crowd. Other than that I cant think of many other nicely finished out bars.

  6. #231

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by onthestrip View Post
    I think OKC just doesnt have any good bar entrepreneurs.
    Great point.

    We have lots of very good local restaurant operators but no one like Elliot Nelson.

  7. #232

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by Pete View Post
    Great point.

    We have lots of very good local restaurant operators but no one like Elliot Nelson.
    And even his places are almost always food with alcohol places...

  8. Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by KilgoreTrout View Post
    23rd street has potential with Grandad's starting things off
    Blue Note, Cookies I might add.

  9. #234

    Default Re: Plaza District

    I never understood the attraction of bar hopping. I much preferred settling in with friends at one place, even if we stayed for hours. To each their own.

  10. #235

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by lasomeday View Post
    I don't know where you guys hang out but the cool bar hopping area is around 51st and Classen, Edna's, Drunken Fry, and Speak Easy are great bars. They may not be next door to each other but we walk to all of them. And one time we walked from Sipango's, Cafe Nova, and The Lobby to them.
    I was about to say...the Hipster Triangle gets no respect. When you bar hop (or crawl) up there you also begin to realize the connectivity issues (and potential) between Classen and Western.

  11. #236

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Another thing is...that void of a district-wide nightlife draw is exactly why the Plaza does Live At the Plaza

  12. #237

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by KilgoreTrout View Post
    They posted last night that Pie Junkie (HOME - piejunkie) is moving into the Plaza District. Seems like a good addition in isolation, but the Plaza could really use another full bar...

    If there is anything that OKC lacks to be considered a major city it is a mass of bars in a walkable local area. I've always felt that Saints, a couple bars, a live music place, and then some complimentary restaurant then bars (e.g., the Mule, new pizza place) could creat a nice mass, but it's looking more like they'll just have one bar, which is disappointing. The fact that Tulsa's bar dense, walkable scene (e.g., Blue Dome, Cherry Street, Brookside, Brady District) is dramatically better than OKC's should be a cause for concern as recent college grads see it as a quality of life issue. Bricktown is a good, walkable area, but it's also more geared towards clubs or chain locations. OKC has the market covered on dense local food areas (Midown, 23rd Street, Automobile Alley...), but a similar local bar scene remains spread out and weak.
    You took the words right out of my mouth. I think it boils down to the fact that Tulsa is just way more dense and I think we have too many irons in the fire instead of really trying to make sure districts hit critical mass.

  13. #238

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by okcustu View Post
    You took the words right out of my mouth. I think it boils down to the fact that Tulsa is just way more dense and I think we have too many irons in the fire instead of really trying to make sure districts hit critical mass.
    LOL, it's kind of silly to say we have too many irons in the fire. There is not one entity controlling all of the districts in OKC that could accomplish what you want. The districts in Tulsa that people like aren't that way because anyone tried to make sure that they hit a critical mass before some other area was developed.

  14. #239

    Default Re: Plaza District

    OKC's bar scene can be a bit divey at times. No doubt a dive bar can hit the spot sometimes, but it would be nice to go to a place where I didn't have to inhale cigarette smoke.

    I will say that Western Avenue is quite dense and walkable and I and many other people have gone up and down it on a night out.

    I also find the notion that the bar scene in Tulsa as "dramatically better" pretty laughable, and I'm in the coveted young professional demographic. Please name one bar in Tulsa that also doesn't front as a restaurant during the day (the only place I can think of is the Max Retropub).

  15. #240

    Default Re: Plaza District

    First, Western is either OKC's best or 2nd best local, walkable bar scene with it's 3 or 4 bars. I like Western, but just 3 or 4 bars is not much. That's pathetic for a city the size of OKC. I stand by the statement that Tulsa's scene is dramatically better. And I don't care if a place serves food during the day if it's primarily considered a bar at night. Nova is a good example. But there are way more of those in Tulsa anyway - Just in the Brady District Crystal Pistol and Sound Pony both come to mind as bar only places... Anyway, here is the Brady District site - take note of the number of bars near each other: It is vastly superior to anything in OKC. Same with the Blue Dome and they don't even include Fassler Hall which is a wonderful nearby concept. And I'd still say that Cherry Street and Brookside are both at least equal to anything in OKC.

    I love OKC, and there is so much positive momentum in the City, but this is an extremely weak area for OKC if the city is trying to claim it's a "big league city." There is no other major city that lacks these types of areas like OKC does.

  16. #241

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by KilgoreTrout View Post
    First, Western is either OKC's best or 2nd best local, walkable bar scene with it's 3 or 4 bars. I like Western, but just 3 or 4 bars is not much. That's pathetic for a city the size of OKC. I stand by the statement that Tulsa's scene is dramatically better. And I don't care if a place serves food during the day if it's primarily considered a bar at night. Nova is a good example. But there are way more of those in Tulsa anyway - Just in the Brady District Crystal Pistol and Sound Pony both come to mind as bar only places... Anyway, here is the Brady District site - take note of the number of bars near each other: It is vastly superior to anything in OKC. Same with the Blue Dome and they don't even include Fassler Hall which is a wonderful nearby concept. And I'd still say that Cherry Street and Brookside are both at least equal to anything in OKC.

    I love OKC, and there is so much positive momentum in the City, but this is an extremely weak area for OKC if the city is trying to claim it's a "big league city." There is no other major city that lacks these types of areas like OKC does.
    Agreed. Little Rock has only the River Market and not much else, but its metro is less than half the size of OKC's. I guess we have to remember that for the longest time OKC was absolutely dismal for its size and played more on the level of Little Rock, Jackson MS, and Knoxville than its true peer cities. This city was neglected and haunted by an inferiority complex. In the past ten years much progress has been made to change that but there is still more to do. This is one of the areas where OKC needs improvement. I strongly believe that it will come within the next few years unless the local economy tanks.

    A lot of people say the conservative nature of OKC is to blame, but Louisville is a city with very similar demographics, income, and creative class to OKC and its fast becoming a magnet for young professionals because of its nightlife and sophistication. If it can be done in Louisville, it can be done in OKC.

  17. #242

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Even though some of you don't like Bricktown, you can't just act like it doesn't exist.

    It is, in fact, a huge bar/club district and bigger than anything in Tulsa or most cities of OKC's size.

    People from OKC are very quick to discount Bricktown but people from other cities often point to it and say, "Why can't WE have something like this?"


    The grass is always greener.

  18. #243

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by KilgoreTrout View Post
    First, Western is either OKC's best or 2nd best local, walkable bar scene with it's 3 or 4 bars. I like Western, but just 3 or 4 bars is not much. That's pathetic for a city the size of OKC. I stand by the statement that Tulsa's scene is dramatically better. And I don't care if a place serves food during the day if it's primarily considered a bar at night. Nova is a good example. But there are way more of those in Tulsa anyway - Just in the Brady District Crystal Pistol and Sound Pony both come to mind as bar only places... Anyway, here is the Brady District site - take note of the number of bars near each other: It is vastly superior to anything in OKC. Same with the Blue Dome and they don't even include Fassler Hall which is a wonderful nearby concept. And I'd still say that Cherry Street and Brookside are both at least equal to anything in OKC.

    I love OKC, and there is so much positive momentum in the City, but this is an extremely weak area for OKC if the city is trying to claim it's a "big league city." There is no other major city that lacks these types of areas like OKC does.
    Western has VZD's, Nova, Sipango, and the Lobby all within a 2 block area. Plus some restaurants that serve drinks at night in a 4 block area.

    Frankly (as Pete points out) Bricktown wins the density/walkability argument over Western and anything in Tulsa, so this argument is pretty much moot.

    This thread is about Plaza Court, so I'm not turning this into a pissing match between Tulsa and OKC. We will just have to agree to disagree (although I agree with you that it wouldn't hurt for a few nicer places in OKC).

  19. #244

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by Pete View Post
    Even though some of you don't like Bricktown, you can't just act like it doesn't exist.

    It is, in fact, a huge bar/club district and bigger than anything in Tulsa or most cities of OKC's size.

    People from OKC are very quick to discount Bricktown but people from other cities often point to it and say, "Why can't WE have something like this?"


    The grass is always greener.
    I'm guilty of this. Bricktown gets so much scorn on here, yet I've taken lots of people from out of town and they all love that area. Its funny because Bricktown is pretty much the measuring stick of any entertainment district in this region yet the way people trash it you would think it was a dump.

    The Purple Bar has become one of my favorite places in the city and I just discovered it a few months ago.

  20. #245

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by ljbab728 View Post
    LOL, it's kind of silly to say we have too many irons in the fire. There is not one entity controlling all of the districts in OKC that could accomplish what you want. The districts in Tulsa that people like aren't that way because anyone tried to make sure that they hit a critical mass before some other area was developed.
    It's not that we have entities controlling the districts but entrepreneurs choose where to put their new haunts. The McNellies Group has a real attraction to the Brady and thus they help pack the district. If nothing else he developers try to make sure the fewer districts hit critical mass.

  21. #246

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by adaniel View Post
    OKC's bar scene can be a bit divey at times. No doubt a dive bar can hit the spot sometimes, but it would be nice to go to a place where I didn't have to inhale cigarette smoke.

    I will say that Western Avenue is quite dense and walkable and I and many other people have gone up and down it on a night out.

    I also find the notion that the bar scene in Tulsa as "dramatically better" pretty laughable, and I'm in the coveted young professional demographic. Please name one bar in Tulsa that also doesn't front as a restaurant during the day (the only place I can think of is the Max Retropub).
    Western doesn't even have uniform sidewalks. I really wish the streetscape initiative would consider a way to better link Western to the Classen Triangle area. It's walking distance arguably, just lacks a clear pathway.

  22. #247

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by Spartan View Post
    Western doesn't even have uniform sidewalks. I really wish the streetscape initiative would consider a way to better link Western to the Classen Triangle area. It's walking distance arguably, just lacks a clear pathway.
    Hey technically anything is walking distance. lol I walked from North Edmond to downtown OKC before.

  23. #248

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Bricktown is tops in terms of a viable, walkable bar scene. Through the lens of a more perfect world, Western is incredibly disjointed. It needs to have more flow...If everything from 40th to 44th were Restaurant/Bar + a particular type of retail (say something like clothing or furniture or things related to the spice shop), that 4 block segment would be a resounding success.

    The Plaza, because of it's layout, would be the best bar district in the city if it gained 4 or 5 bars between McKinley and Indiana, but that would require residential being rezoned for restaurant/bar (and the same thing could be said of the "Classen Triangle"...and really will likely be necessary to connect Western/Classen Triangle)

    The most rational place for focus on a budding Bar district is 2 or so block radius @ 10th/Walker. With the bar going in at the top of the Osler and hopefully the biergarten concept at the old auto shop at 10th/Hudson, 4 more bars in the area would make it a great night time district. It also helps that the Hospital is right there, which is a high employment facility. It's also close to Deep Deuce, and the Edge will be right there, I'd LOVE to see MidTown focus on getting 4 to 8 more bars/pubs near the roundabout in the next 5 years.

  24. #249

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Since we often compare OKC to Louisville here - I see Bricktown as our still developing version of 4th Street Live; and Western as our very compact version of Bardstown Road.

    4th Street Live! :: Home

    And a couple photos from Bardstown Road.....

    Click image for larger version. 

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  25. #250

    Default Re: Plaza District

    Quote Originally Posted by CaptDave View Post
    Since we often compare OKC to Louisville here - I see Bricktown as our still developing version of 4th Street Live; and Western as our very compact version of Bardstown Road.

    4th Street Live! :: Home

    And a couple photos from Bardstown Road.....

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Agreed. Louisville is definitely inspiration for OKC. Their demographics are similar so what works there is pretty likely to work in OKC.

    Louisville is about 10-15 years ahead of OKC in my opinion. Its offerings are more akin to that of Charlotte despite being the same size as OKC. OKC today would probably be on the level of Louisville if not for the '80s-90s bust.

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