Friday, February 13, 2015

The ugly Simon Mall details

The latest plans that Simon submitted to the planning commission included the following drawings.

The one above really doesn't look that different from ones previously published, except there seems to be more parking. Compare the drawing above to one posted a few months ago. From the detail showing the hundreds of parking spaces, you get a feel as to how big this is. How far north does this extend?

It extends several hundred yards further north than I thought. I think the early sketches were purposely vague.

Look at the above map closely. (You can click on it to enlarge it.) See the gray ribbon that ends right above the 2NEWS? That is the usually dry creek that feeds the ponds at the Westside YMCA. The end of the gray ribbon is the concrete bridge that crosses to the Y--with the small pond to the south and below the dam Lake Logan. Just south of the small pond made by the concrete dam/bridge is the property boundary line shown by the obnoxious lime green. The YMCA will have neighbors--very CLOSE neighbors. But it gets worse.

CLICK HERE for a PDF of the above map that you can enlarge. You need to study this. They put the heights of the retaining walls they are building around the perimeter. Near 61st Street, there will be a 10 foot retaining wall right at the edge of the Pipeline Trail. This wall runs north and very slightly west along the top of the ridge, and this wall gets TALLER the further north you go. Around the area where the Old Boys Trail starts, the wall is 15 feet. Not much further north the wall is 45 feet tall. If you follow the wall to where it starts curving around to the west, the wall gets up to 75 feet!!!

The YMCA is obviously very concerned. All the kids attending summer camp will have this 7 story tall wall staring them in the face. Goodbye to the wilderness feel of this YMCA camp.

A bit of humor here I suppose, but I am serious. This mall will never get one cent on my business. All trail users and nature enthusiasts should be of a like mind.

But we can and are still fighting this. We CAN win this. Why? Because building a MALL on this land is just plain WRONG. What can you do to help this cause? Visit the Tulsa Urban Wilderness Coalition. Join their Facebook page. And join Turkey Mountain Strategy on Facebook as well. And WRITE AND CALL your city counselors.

I live in district 2 where the Simon wants to build this mall. Jeannie Cue is my counselor, and she returned my email. I get the feeling that the tide may be turning in our favor. Let's keep the momentum!


  1. The other aspect of a approximately 70 ft high retaining wall is that the parking lot will be 70 ft above the surrounding terrain. How will runoff be controlled without catastrophic damage?

  2. I wrote her too, used my best words, here's to finding something to do instead of just hoping, because I'm convinced if we do nothing we deserve to lose those trails. Thank you for your ever-informative blog.