The proposed Vision 2025 plan vote will impact Bixby

Tuesday, July 8th 2003, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

The Vision 2025 plan to improve Tulsa with money from a sales tax - includes money for small communities throughout the county.

For example, the community of Bixby. In Bixby Tuesday, they opened the Bixby Community Center. News on 6 reporter Emory Bryan has the story.

Tulsa County's newest community center opened in an old grocery store in Bixby. It took $950,000 to buy and renovate the building - mainly from the 4 to Fix the County sales tax. The Vision 2025 sales tax plan includes 5 more community centers like the one in Bixby. Bob Dick, Tulsa County Commissioner: “I think this is a model community center that we had in mind when we talk about building these throughout Tulsa County.”

Bixby city leaders hope the community center will be an attraction for families - and help their economy - but it's already on fire with new houses going up every day. Their biggest local problem is a history of flooding - especially along Haikey Creek. Some of the problem has been solved - but there's millions of dollars of work left to be done.

Much of the land around Haikey Creek is low flat farmland that's in the floodplain. Some of the money in the vision package would pay to dredge Haikey Creek making some of that floodplain suitable for new houses. One of the Vision packages includes $12.2-million for work on Haikey Creek. It's not enough to complete the job - but experts say it's a start. Janet Meshek, Hydrologist: “long flat area that are close to the Arkansas river about the only thing that can be done is a channelization project and this project could take about 1100 acres out the floodplain in that area.”

Of all the Vision projects - Haikey Creek would have the most direct effect on Bixby. They've got new proof of what a sales tax can do - and city leaders hope the next one will pass and make more of Bixby livable.