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OKC Seeing Fruits Of MAPS Effort 20 Years Later

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When the idea for these projects was hatched, an idea that involved self-imposing a one-cent sales tax, many were skeptical, doubting it would work because few cities had ever tried something of this magnitude. When the idea for these projects was hatched, an idea that involved self-imposing a one-cent sales tax, many were skeptical, doubting it would work because few cities had ever tried something of this magnitude.
OKLAHOMA CITY -

Back in 1993, Oklahoma City voters did something brave in an attempt to turn around a struggling city. Now 20 years later, the city is clearly seeing the fruits of that effort.

MAPS stands for Metropolitan Area Projects. When the idea for these projects was hatched, an idea that involved self-imposing a one-cent sales tax, many were skeptical, doubting it would work because few cities had ever tried something of this magnitude.

But, by a slim margin, Oklahoma City voters did approve a five-year, one-cent sales tax.

The $350 million that tax brought in paid, up front, for projects that gave the downtown new life, and ultimately revamped the city's image nationally.

"People were not coming here, we were losing jobs, we had one downtown hotel that wasn't in good shape. I just knew we had to do something to revive our city and to see the transformation that's happened in just 20 years is phenomenal," Ron Norrick said.

An anniversary steering committee revealed a holiday ornament commemorating the 20th anniversary celebration.

BC Clark Jewelers made the ornament. You can buy one for $16.50. Proceeds will benefit the Oklahoma River Foundation.

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