EDMOND — Here’s our list of the top City of Edmond stories for 2012:
No. 1: Major economic investment made on Covell at Interstate 35
The Edmond City Council approved the negotiated agreements 5-0 in October for developing the $25.5 million Hilton Garden Inn and conference center to be located at the northwest corner of Interstate 35 and Covell Road. The City Council identified a need for a hotel and conference center to generate tourism and sales tax and improve quality of life in Edmond.
The City Council previously approved the $2.2 million purchase of 7.13 acres of undeveloped land at the hotel site. The $2.2 million was taken from the city’s Real Property Tax Fund. Safeguards are in place to protect the city’s land investment, said attorney Leslie Batchelor, representing the city in the projects. It is a legal requirement that the public not give anything away to private investment, she said.
The council also reached unanimous agreement concerning the development of Summit Sports Complex to be located on the northeast corner of the interchange.
A 40,000-square-foot Francis Tuttle Center for Municipal Excellence is being developed on the northeast corner of Interstate 35 and Covell Road. The center also will accommodate Adult and Career Development courses and workshops, complete as a business innovation center with classrooms and offices for a business incubator, said Peggy Geib, head of business and industry services at Francis Tuttle.
No. 2: City reveals Public Safety Center design and location
A design for the Public Safety Center was presented to the public in October. The 70,000-square-foot Edmond PSC will be built on a 1-acre site where the City of Edmond Administration Building currently stands at 100 E. First St. Laboratory, vehicles, evidence-based storage and other related functions will be at a $3.5 million auxiliary building to be constructed northwest of 33rd Street and Broadway.
Building exteriors such as the Forensic Science Institute, the OSBI laboratory and historic buildings downtown influenced the Public Safety Center design, said John Osborne, an architect with Frankfurt-Short-Bruza.
All of the city’s downtown design guidelines are respected in the plan. Pedestrians will experience generously landscaped sidewalks to encourage an east-to-west pedestrian flow from downtown to the University of Central Oklahoma campus.
A corner entry off First Street and Littler will allow public access amid a vertical glass entryway rising three stories, Osborne said. The main facility will initially accommodate more than 170 police staff mixed with public safety staff.
An alley driveway will slope down on the south side of the building for police parking and detention functions secured by a fence. Detention cells will be secluded in a lower basement, with light from solar tubes.
The administration building is set to be demolished in January. Late spring is the target date before the bids will be approved. Construction should take 18 months to two years and the building should open in early 2015.