The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

8 September 2004

Well, not much debt, anyway

The goal, said City Manager Jim Couch, was to finish MAPS right and without debt.

By any reasonable reckoning, they did the job right; the nine original Metropolitan Area Projects were massive undertakings, and the results are breathtaking.

But did they go over budget? Here are the individual projects:

  • SBC Bricktown Ballpark ($34 million)
  • Bricktown Canal ($23 million)
  • Oklahoma Spirit Trolleys ($5 million)
  • Cox Convention Center renovation/expansion ($60 million)
  • Civic Center Music Hall renovation ($53 million)
  • State Fairgrounds improvements ($14 million)
  • Ford Center ($89 million)
  • North Canadian Oklahoma River development ($53.5 million)
  • Ronald J. Norick Library ($21.5 million)

Which comes to $353 million, a fair chunk of change by any measure. However, the city claims to have collected only $309 million from the temporary sales tax (since expired) that funded the projects.

Of course: government projects result in cost overruns. Nature of the beast. No doubt some of the difference was made up by the sale of naming rights. And I've had years (don't even ask) when I overspent my income by 14 percent. So I'm not as cranky about this as I could be, I suppose, especially since the City isn't actually running a deficit, unlike some governments I could name.

Posted at 12:19 PM to City Scene


How much did Norick pay to have the library named after him?

There are some days I wake up and I'm surprised to find that they haven't renamed the state Gaylordahoma. :sigh:

Posted by: Dwayne "the canoe guy" at 8:57 AM on 9 September 2004

Truth be told, I think Norick was faintly embarrassed by it, at least at first. At least Ron Norick Blvd. (a brief stretch of Robinson) doesn't run past it.

Ford and its dealers apparently ponied up $8.1 million to hang the big blue oval on the Ford Center; I don't know how much SBC forked over to get its logo over the gate at the Brick, but it's got to be short of the $2.1 million a year they pay for the SBC Center in San Antonio (Spurs) and SBC Park in San Francisco (Giants).

Posted by: CGHill at 12:30 PM on 9 September 2004