By Traci Chapman
Oklahoma Turnpike Authority is expected to auction off 14 parcels of land May 20, all of them adjacent to Kilpatrick Turnpike and several within Canadian County.
OTA says they don’t need the land and hope to provide the unused land for private development; the issue, some area homeowners say, is that they believed the state agency would work with them to resolve flooding issues caused in part due to the turnpike’s construction.
That type of partnership would not be incumbent on individuals or developers purchasing the tracts adjacent to the turnpike in areas surrounding Mustang Creek – an area, homeowners said, was already prone to flooding.
Parcels auctioned would be the first OTA sale via auction rather than sealed bid, officials said. Those properties were acquired by the state agency under its Driving Forward program. Driving Forward began in 2015 as a way to streamline turnpike improvements and expansions; OTA officials said it was expected to conclude in 2021.
Karen Graves and Michael Smith were two individuals who spearheaded a March 30 meeting with OTA and other officials involving their concerns about a potential rezone of property to the east of their church, United Methodist Church of the Good Shepherd.
That rezone was approved April 28 by Oklahoma City Council, which allows 720 Management LP to build a multi-use development near SW 15th and Sara Road, including 80 duplexes. Council members approved the request after the developer pledged to work with UMC officials and area homeowners’ association members to provide a drainage plan that would help mitigate flooding in the area that could be caused by the new development.
MOVEMENT ON ISSUES
Eric Wenger, Oklahoma City public works director, said during that meeting there was some movement on flooding issues, including the city’s plan to shortly begin basin wide studies encompassing 600 square miles of Oklahoma City – including the Mustang Creek area.
OTA would assist with those studies, said Joe Echelle, OTA assistant executive director of engineering, maintenance and construction.
There wasn’t an easy answer, however, Wenger and Echelle said, when you took into account the nature of storms seen in Oklahoma City in recent years.
While Federal Emergency Management Agency maps outline what are supposed to be 100-year flooding events, that hasn’t been the reality.
“In the last 10 years Oklahoma City has had three 100-year and three 500-year events,” Wenger said. “It’s just very difficult to plan for that kind of contingency with those historic storms.”
“Last year we had two instances where water got over the Kilpatrick Turnpike for the first time ever,” Echelle said in corroborating Wenger’s discussion about the severity of the 2020 storms.
As part of their efforts, UMC officials and area homeowners and homeowners’ association members hoped to work with the turnpike authority to resolve other potential flooding issues caused by the recently constructed turnpike. Smith during the March 30 meeting presented a series of proposals to OTA about possible uses for land adjacent to the turnpike – including parcels included in the Thursday, May 20 sale.
Smith, a geologist and UMC trustee, submitted a letter to OTA and several other local, county and state officials late last week requesting the May 20 auction be postponed and/or the Mustang Watershed properties be withdrawn from the auction.
“Flooding has greatly increased with both increased community development, especially since the turnpike was built,” he stated in that letter. “The turnpike is a fine benefit but must not precipitate more harm than good…the turnpike is selling lands immediately adjacent to the turnpike, lands that should be directly utilized to correct and/or be part of the solution to the local flooding.”
PROPERTIES TO BE SOLD
Dakil Auctioneers is due to conduct the May 20 auction, set to begin at 6 p.m. An open house for properties to be sold was May 15.
Area properties listed by OTA and Dakil Auctioneers for sale were:
- SIDE OF SW 44TH BETWEEN COUNTY LINE RD & MORGAN RD: Approx. 45.38 Acres MOL. Public Water, No Sewer. Zoned: AA.
- SIDE OF JOHN KILPATRICK TURNPIKE AND W. SIDE OF COUNTY LINE RD: Approx. 27.54 Acres MOL. Located on Formerly Peddy Rd. House-Approx. 2,226 SF, Shop-Approx. 1,500 SF, Barn-Approx. 6,000 SF, Shed-Approx. 612 SF. Public Water/Sewer. Zoned: AA.
- NE CORNER OF SW 29TH ST & S. SARA RD: Approx. 1.12 Acres MOL. Public Water/Sewer. Zoned: R1.
- SIDE OF JOHN KILPATRICK TURNPIKE & W. SIDE OF S. SARA RD: Approx. 8.98 Acres MOL. Public Water/Sewer. Zoned: AA.
- SIDE OF JOHN KILPATRICK TURNPIKE & S. SIDE OF SW 15TH ST: Approx. 16.91 Acres MOL. Public Water/Sewer. Zoned: AA.
- SIDE OF JOHN KILPATRICK TURNPIKE & W. SIDE OF S. MORGAN RD: Approx. 10.43 Acres MOL. No Public Water/Sewer. Zoned: AA.
- SIDE OF JOHN KILPATRICK TURNPIKE & W. SIDE OF S. COUNTY LINE RD: Approx. 13.13 Acres MOL. Public Water/Sewer. Zoned: AA.
- SIDE OF CALEB ST IN BRIGHTON POINTE ADDITION: Approx. 0.29 Acres MOL. Public Water/Sewer. Zoned: AA.
- SIDE OF JOHN KILPATRICK TURNPIKE & E. SIDE OF S. COUNTY LINE RD: Approx. 9.61 Acres MOL. Public Water/Sewer. Zoned: R1.
- E, SIDE OF CALEB ST. IN BRIGHTON POINTE ADDITION: Approx. 2.19 Acres MOL. Public Water/Sewer. Zoned: R1.
- SIDE OF JOHN KILPATRICK TURNPIKE & E. SIDE OF COUNTY LINE RD: Approx. 6.56 Acres MOL. Public Water/Sewer. Zoned: R1.
- SIDE OF JOHN KILPATRICK TURNPIKE & N. SIDE OF SW 29TH ST & E. SIDE OF S. SARA RD: Approx. 1.96 Acres MOL. NO HOUSE HERE MOVED ABOVE. Public Water/Sewer. Zoned: PUD-1149 (C3).
- SIDE OF JOHN KILPATRICK TURNPIKE & W. OF SH 152 & E. OF S. COUNTY LINE RD: Approx. 9.45 Acres MOL. Public Water/Sewer. Zoned: R1.