Tulsa Gathering Place Crews Busy Transforming RiverParks Banks
TULSA, Oklahoma - Osage SkyNews6 HD allows for an overhead view you’ll only see here; plus our reporter got an exclusive on-the-ground explanation of what's happening with the Gathering Place -- a premier park being built in Tulsa.
Even with all the work that's been done until now, most of the dirt is still in the year ahead.
But the project is on time, and within the $350 million budget.
It's been four months since major dirt work started at The Gathering Place, and even though it looks dramatically different already, only about 5 percent of the dirt work is finished, according to project manager Jeff Stava.
"And keep in mind that's 420,000 cubic yards of dirt that has to be moved on the site,” he said. “That's a lot of dirt."
Special Coverage: A Gathering Place for Tulsa
The scale of the project is best seen overhead in this view from Osage SkyNews 6 HD.
While a temporary dam diverts water, excavators are digging out rock from the riverbed and building up land on the edge.
A road has been built over Zink Dam. The outline of the new riverbank south of the dam is there.
They’re building two large peninsulas; 9 acres of new land jutting out in the river, with River Parks trails along the edge.
“Those bump out, land extensions, that's going to allow people on those lower trails to get right down to the water’s edge, and it's going to be an important part of the park because we've always talked about the accessibility to the river,” Stava said. “And with the county's investment, this is going to allow people to get down to the water’s edge.”
The riverbank will move 200 feet to the west in those places, so the overlooks there now will be demolished.
The fountains have been filled in and they'll become part of the foundation of the park.
But as that work is getting serious on the bank, workers are digging out what's been building up forever.
"There's a lot of trash, man-made trash and natural trash, trees and logs and roots so as we excavate we're pulling all of that out of the river."
That should help the natural flow of the river to clean out all the trash.
They're also thinking about bus service into the park, expecting the several hundred spots available there won't be nearly enough to meet demand.