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Thread: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

  1. #1

    OK River OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    Pedestrian bridge proposed for Oklahoma River

    A local architecture firm has drawn up plans to convert an abandoned rail bridge into a way to cross the Oklahoma River on bike or foot.



    ADG of Oklahoma City has submitted a presentation to the OKC Riverfront Redevelopment Authority which will be reviewed at their March 28th meeting.

    The plan would provide a link between the existing trails on either side of the Oklahoma River, a need frequently expressed by those who are active users of trail system. Currently, the only way to cross the river is to come off the trails and up onto roadway bridges.

    The bridge is centrally located on the river trails and in close proximity to the Wheeler District , about a quarter mile west of its Ferris wheel.

    As part of MAPS 3, a new West Trail was built to link the river trails to Lake Overholser and beyond.

    Will Rogers Bike Trail, another MAPS 3 project, is currently under construction and will link the Lake Hefner Trails south to the Oklahoma River. When complete, it will be possible for cyclists and pedestrians to make one huge loop starting downtown, west and north to Lake Overholser, northeast to Lake Hefner, and then south again to the central city.

    No funding source has been identified however the presentation suggests the possible inclusion in the 2017 General Obligation Bond which comes up for a public vote this fall.























  2. #2

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    I have run under that existing bridge on the north side a fair number of times and have wondered about something like this.

  3. #3

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    It's badly needed and really a good location for crossing over.

    I'm sure the Wheeler people will be excited about this.

  4. #4

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    Pete, I know I once knew it but who owns the land on the north side of the river there?

  5. #5

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    This would be amazing. I think about this every time I pass this bridge. Even the sanctioned "crossovers" (at Robinson and Portland) are terrifying, and trying to cross at Western, Walker, Penn, and May is doable but even scarier. This is desperately needed - hope we can make it happen!

  6. #6

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    Quote Originally Posted by hfry View Post
    Pete, I know I once knew it but who owns the land on the north side of the river there?
    It's all owned by the City.

  7. #7

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    Yes! I really hope this happens as it is desperately needed for those trails.

    I know the Wheeler group was advocating for people to list it as a suggestion during the (IIRC) bond survey a few weeks back.

  8. #8

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    I like it very much. IMO the blue proposed trail should also connect to skydance so you could have a logical flow through the park and to the south side...

    (I know the existing trails get you close, but it should be a very deliberate flow IMO)

  9. #9

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    This would be amazing if realized. I actually walked across that bridge the other day. Quite amazing views!

  10. #10

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    This would be great. Absolutely needed IMO.

  11. #11

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    Even without the obvious functional benefits, this would be worthwhile just from a beautification standpoint.

    The proximity of this to the Wheeler District would really enhance the appeal of additional Riverfront development in this section of the river. Imagine having a boardwalk spanning the south shore from the ferris wheel to this pedestrian bridge, with maybe a nice hotel and some restaurants along the north shore.

    Has the city developed a master plan for riverfront development? It would be nice to know the long-term direction for the river apart from the Riversport attractions.

  12. #12

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    ^^^^^

  13. #13

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    Bout time! Been talkin about this idea forever and a day!

  14. #14

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    Would be pretty neat if they had one of those little trains like the zoo has running the trail route all the time. Not like 24-7

  15. #15

    Thumbs up Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    Great post CS_Mike.

    Dream come true! Hope the city takes this proposal & run with it. Very familiar with this abandoned bridge; once suggested that they turn this into a fishing pier similar to the one on Riverside Drive in Tulsa where they have a low water dam:

    The Pedestrian Bridge on Tulsa's Arkansas River (built 1975) has a picturesque view of downtown; also great for bike riding, fishing, fireworks & recreation.

    Understand that this area of the Oklahoma River on the abandoned trestle (between S. Western & Exchange Avenue Bridge south @ McKinley) isn't suitable for fishing; that area of the river is occasionally drained.

  16. #16

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    Steve's story which includes comments by Scott Dedmon, Mike Knopp of the Oklahoma City Boathouse foundation, and Blair Humphreys.

    http://m.newsok.com/article/5543026

  17. #17

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    ^

    Right on cue.

    I need to start demanding a paycheck from the Oklahoman.

  18. #18

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    Tom Elmore is still around and up to his old ways. From the Oklahoman.com comments on the story:

    "This was the Frisco line's direct connection from OKC Union Station - train yard obliterated by rocket-scientists at ODOT - to, yeah, WILL ROGERS WORLD AIRPORT. So - yeah, sure - let's "turn it into some pimped-up pedestrian bridge." Back to cave-man days. Who needs modern transportation? (Ask former congressman Ernest J. Istook, who funded the destruction of the Union Station facility and its connections to make way for ODOT's ugly, poorly-built "New Crosstown," which, as I predicted - is now up around ONE BILLION DOLLARS, far, far above ODOT's estimates. Oh - and guess what? ODOT's BROKE - along with the rest of state government. While the big shots in OKC keep right on running long-standing, taxpaying businesses out-uh-there, in favor of more maintenance-intensive foofaraw down on the muddy ditch.)"

  19. #19

    Thumbs up Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    These are the same people who would have opposed MAPS had Ron Norick not taken this aggressive city project underground before it was unveiled to the public. Had it not been for MAPS; most of the talent in OKC would reside in the DFW & Houston areas.

    Oklahoma City must continue its momentum beyond 2020 with projects that will make our city more cosmetically appealing to new corporations & businesses for relocation & expansion. Our downtown arena was a catalyst for the NBA Thunder. Had we not passed MAPS, Devon Energy was planning to relocate to Houston.

    Oklahoma City lost Fleming to Dallas, Kerr-McGee to Houston; two of our Fortune 500/1000 companies along with the good paying jobs those corporations provided.

    Since the passage of MAPS, OKC has prospered. Pre-1990, our city looked like a big old raggedy town--as cheap & unattractive as a bride in daisy duke blue jean shorts on her wedding day. Yeah, we looked like a cheap trashy whore with no class--and all ass.

    Let's continue to rejuvenate the beauty of our city that was neglected from 1960-1990 with projects that would have stagnated our growth like the Pei Plan, Sting of Pearls river plan & the reckless destruction of the Urban Renewal. There are beautiful people here, let's also reflect that beauty in our town.

  20. #20

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    Minor quibble, but my OCD side is killing me. The placement of the covered sections really bug me. Three sections on the western edge that are symmetrically placed, but only one on the east edge that completely unbalances the design. Grrrr...

  21. #21

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    On that side they're probably positioned to maximize sight lines of the skyline.

  22. #22

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    Quote Originally Posted by Spartan View Post
    On that side they're probably positioned to maximize sight lines of the skyline.
    Good point Spartan. The east side of that bridge doesn't off anything scenic other than an alternative to the other side--I've drove off that bridge as a kid in the 1960s. The dept at the time was around 10-12 feet midway.

    May have missed something; has a price tag been mentioned on this project?

  23. #23

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    That sure is a lot of wood . Didn't the Skydance bridge suffer from warping wood?

  24. Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    Quote Originally Posted by warreng88 View Post
    Tom Elmore is still around and up to his old ways. From the Oklahoman.com comments on the story:

    "This was the Frisco line's direct connection from OKC Union Station - train yard obliterated by rocket-scientists at ODOT - to, yeah, WILL ROGERS WORLD AIRPORT. So - yeah, sure - let's "turn it into some pimped-up pedestrian bridge." Back to cave-man days. Who needs modern transportation? (Ask former congressman Ernest J. Istook, who funded the destruction of the Union Station facility and its connections to make way for ODOT's ugly, poorly-built "New Crosstown," which, as I predicted - is now up around ONE BILLION DOLLARS, far, far above ODOT's estimates. Oh - and guess what? ODOT's BROKE - along with the rest of state government. While the big shots in OKC keep right on running long-standing, taxpaying businesses out-uh-there, in favor of more maintenance-intensive foofaraw down on the muddy ditch.)"
    I like Tom's passion for all things rail, especially passenger and commuter rail, but he's really got to let the loss of the yard at Union Station go. He's not wrong that Union Station and it's yard would have been much easier and more grand to use for an intermodal transit hub, but that ship has *LONG* since sailed. And besides, a commuter rail train could still make the connection to WRWA from Stanta Fe Station by taking what's known as the "Packingtown Lead", which runs east-west roughly where SW 20th St would be, connecting the north-south BNSF "Red Rock Subdivision" mainline east of Shields to the former Frisco mainline he speaks of, just west of Agnew. The connection is actually easier to traverse, as there's a direct wye - which did not exist to get trains from the Red Rock Sub into the Union Station yard.

    Quote Originally Posted by Brett View Post
    That sure is a lot of wood . Didn't the Skydance bridge suffer from warping wood?
    For what it's worth, the bridge's current decking material is wood as well, although we're talking wooden railroad ties treated with creosote.

  25. #25

    Default Re: OK River Pedestrian Bridge

    As I was running by the existing bridge over the weekend, it finally occurred to me what this reminds me a bit of. Last year I took a vacation to NYC and spend a couple days walking around Manhattan, and part of that included finding and walking the High Line. This wouldn't be near as long of course, but the idea is roughly similar.

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