There are good feelings all around Capitol Hill, but much work remains to be done. It is doubtful if the city is willing to make the kind of investment in Capitol Hill that has been proven to work in several other areas of the inner city. It is time to bring back Capitol Hill’s heritage and identity. Many of the original south side families are still there on the south side, and others would be astonished. Many of the original graduates of Capitol Hill High School and U.S. Grant High School still live in S. OKC, just right on the other side of I-240. Many of the elderly in the area trace their families to the original 1889 Land Run, and remember running family businesses butcher shops, bakeries, groceries, newspapers, etc that all called Capitol Hill home. It is time to bring back the legacy of Commerce Street, because perhaps then the area will be as close as it ever was to its once-thriving self. Dominoes will fall into place once SW 25th Street gets completely reverted back to its original name. There are so many things one can imagine that could turn Capitol Hill into a star, or at least an exciting and vibrant modern, urban district. But first let’s just bring back Commerce Street, just like it was.
That may be a lot to ask of a handful of street signs, but there is precedent, a mile to the south: most of the signage along 36th Street has been replaced with “Grand Blvd” signs, reflecting the old 1930 plan. And they don’t have to do the renaming all over the southside, either: Western to Shields is probably enough. It’s not like the city is averse to having streets change names all of a sudden, as anyone who’s had to drive Eastern/Martin Luther King/American Indian Blvd. already knows.