Lakefront Plan Being Developed / 'Greatest Potential' Lies with Lake Hefner Reservation

By Ray, Tim | THE JOURNAL RECORD, October 24, 1987 | Go to article overview

Lakefront Plan Being Developed / 'Greatest Potential' Lies with Lake Hefner Reservation


Ray, Tim, THE JOURNAL RECORD


Hotels, restaurants, shops, water taxis and new recreational opportunities could be developed in the future on Oklahoma City lakes under a "dream" lakefront master plan being developed by a team of consultants.

The city's three lake reservations - Hefner, Overholser and Draper - will be included in a multi-phased master plan for long-range recreational and commercial development by OKC Waterfront Consultants Inc., which was selected by the Oklahoma City Municipal Improvement Authority.

OKC Waterfront won out over two other teams of consultants in its bid to prepare the plan.

While financing obviously is a key to the dream plan, the "greatest potential for development" lies within the Lake Hefner reservation, said Randy Hill, vice president of E.D. Hill Surveying & Engineering Co., which is part of OKC Waterfront Consultants Inc.

That is because of the availability of city-owned land and the urban setting of Lake Hefner, Hill said. The city owns comparatively little land around Lake Overholser, and Lake Stanley Draper is in a mostly rural setting.

Because of the potential for development at Lake Hefner, Hill said that lake will be studied first.

Potential areas for commercial development at Lake Hefner include frontage area along Northwest Expressway, the marina area on the southwest side of the lake, the boat club area on the west side of the lake and the southwest corner of NW 122nd St. and Portland Ave.

In addition to E.D. Hill, the consulting team consists of the following firms:

- Proctor-Bowers & Associates of Dallas, which is a firm specializing in waterfront planning, canal and lake planning and landscape architecture.

- The Oklahoma City and Austin offices of Peat, Marwick, Main & Co., involved in financial planning and identification of funding sources.

- Lampkin, Walker & Co. of Oklahoma City, which is involved in environmental and park engineering, traffic planning and construction cost estimating.

- Thurman Engineering Co. of Oklahoma City, which is involved in lake and dam engineering review and analysis, environmental impact analysis and water quality analysis.

- Crandall-Reed Architects of Oklahoma City, which is involved in land planning, developing architectural character models, conceptual designing of infrastructure and making preliminary cost estimates.

The consulting team will attempt to show the maximum potential development of the lakes, said Hill, leaving it up to the water trust to decide how much development actually occurs.

Because availability of financing will be a key factor, Hill noted the inclusion of Peat, Marwick, Main & Co. in the consulting team. Also, Proctor-Bowers & Associates designed the 2,500-acre Los Calinas waterfront community in Irving, Texas, Hill pointed out.

Another significant factor could be the staging of the U.S. Olympic Festival in Oklahoma City during the 1989 Centennial Celebration.

Facilities for marathon and cycling events will be needed for the festival.

As a result, an interest in "fast-tracking" development of the Bluff Creek Canal linking Lake Hefner to Lake Overholser has been expressed by trustees of the municipal improvement authority. …

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