Ideas Sought On Street Repair Projects

Monday, October 29th 2007, 10:02 am
By: News On 6

The City of Tulsa takes a step toward getting better streets in Tulsa. It’s called “Complete Our Streets” and the city sees it as a way to decide how to address a backlog of street repairs. The News On 6’s Emory Bryan reports a panel has been commissioned by the mayor’s office and Monday evening, members heard from the public to get ideas on how improvements should be handled and paid for.

Anywhere there is a street in Tulsa, there is a driver willing to complain about the condition of the street.

“I don't know how to fix them, but they need to fix them. That's for dadgum sure,” said one man interviewed by The News On 6.

Tulsa has almost 100 street projects underway, many of them downtown, but the public demands more. Polling data from the failed river development tax showed many voters wanted the city to fix the streets first. Separating the process from politics was one of the reasons Tulsa Mayor Kathy Taylor said she wanted an independent panel to decide what to do about the streets.

"We want to see are we really doing a good job of contracting our services to construct our streets and maintain them, are we doing a good job of planning for the future, with bike trails and things like that and most importantly, can we pay for it?" said Dewey Bartlett with Save Our Streets.

The 15 person panel is supposed to gather information from city workers and the public, review the contracts, design and financing of street repairs, and then make a recommendation on how to do it by December 4th.

The current estimate is that the city needs $1 billion and ten years to fix the streets.

"I think a lot of them need to be repaired and they need a lot of attention,” said one woman interviewed by The News On 6.

The wildcard for the city is how to convince the public to pay for it.

"We have the highest sales tax in the country, it's almost 10 cents on the dollar and they can't fix the streets for ten cents on the dollar?" added another man interviewed by The News On 6.

Dewey Bartlett appeared on Six In The Morning Monday to talk about the panel's meeting. Click here to watch the video.

Watch the video: Ideas Sought On Street Repair Projects

For more information on downtown street repairs, click here.

Related story:

10/28/2007 Input Sought On City Streets