Monday, December 14, 2009

What MAPS tells us about north v. south

Let's pause our search at convention centers to take a real quick flashback at the MAPS 3 election results. If you previously didn't believe in a north/south dichotomy, take a look at this. It couldn't be clearer, and I think this is evidence that the rift between North OKC and South OKC is getting worse. Typically the MAPS results follow socioeconomic lines, but there are some lower-income wards in NE OKC that went pro-MAPS and some high-income wards in SW OKC that went anti-MAPS. That suggests that the north/south rift is so strong that it even bridges socioeconomic rifts.

The north side with its museums, coffee shops, art galleries, locally-owned restaurants, night clubs, locally-owned bookstores, universities, and so on.. and the southside with none of that. Consider that the southside, a huge region with hundreds of thousands of people, has ONE Starbucks (the only coffee option besides 7/11). Edmond alone had 8. North OKC has quite a collection, too. There is also not a single bookstore in South OKC, and going south from downtown, you won't reach a bookstore until you get to the southwest side of Norman.

And lastly, in honor of MAPS 3 passing, here's some music to go with it. The song is "Maps" by the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Last week OKC said "Yeah Yeah Yeah" to MAPS 3.


Steve said...

Interesting, but I'd like to see this map broken down evev further by population size. Some areas have a sparce, but large area and could skew how the results look by color. Also, it seems some areas that do not have OKC addresses are red or blue, like Mustang and parts of Yukon. Did they get to vote for MAPS3 too?

And doesn't Waldenbooks at I-35 and I-240 count as a south bookstore? The South end also needs a Jamba Juice ... I can't get one in between NW Expressway and Norman!

arduino said...

Hi. I don't read your blog, but a friend emailed me this entry. I wrote a quick off the cuff reply. Here is my whargarrbl:

Seems a very simplistic analysis. I noticed the Rivendell area supported it, but I guess they don't count.

To add a counter simplistic analysis, I would say that MAPS has a history of directly benefitting a small group of individuals. I don't think it's far fetched to say that the owners and managers of those buisnesses reside primarily in N. OKC, not to mention that Chesapeake was in favor of this as well, and most of their employees reside in N. OKC and Edmond.

I think he has a point that maybe the Southsiders don't support tax based inititiatives like Northsiders do, but, again I think you could bring up a lot of legitimate reasons why.

Now for the facts. I know of at least two Starbucks on the south side as well as a java daves. So he's wrong there. I don't know what he is getting at by stating the Starbucks thing anyway. It seems that most people I know of go to Starbucks as a part of their commute. Since the majority of jobs are on the North side, it would make sense there would be more in that area. Just seems stupid to me I guess.

What about the fact that South OKC has more people than North OKC and yet it has 1 hospital? It's not as if everything is equal. The south side has Shields and I-240 where the North side has 39th Expy, NW Expy, Hefner Pkwy, and the Broadway Extension. The south side has Draper way out east, while the North side has Hefner and Overholser nearby.

I would say Southsiders have very little to gain when it comes to OKC infrastructure spending.

About the southside having one bookstore. It's been awhile since I've been to crossroads but they used to have a couple, but I guess those probably wouldn't count with this guy anyway. I guess he doesn't count used bookstores either as I know of two on the south side at least. The south side also has a goth bookstore that carries specific genres of books. I know the south side has Mardel's too. Technically it is a book store and it is locally owned as the billionaire owner lives around 119th and Council. How many does the North side have anyway? From what I remember it has Bollinger's, Full Circle and Books a Million. I guess the author may be counting Barnes and Nobles as well Borders? If you don't count chains then really aren't we only talking about two bookstores for the north side?

Oh yeah, the south side has 1 library too, IIRC.

I guess when this guy is talking night clubs, the ones around 89th and western and the Hispanic ones don't count? I'd give him the art galleries though that same goth bookstore did have an art gallery as well.

To say that the divide bridges socioeconomic gaps is a little suspicious. A little critical thinking, and we know that poor people don't vote unless they are old. We also know that bad neighborhoods are spread throughout North OKC. Nichols Hills, probably the nicest residential area in OKC, is surrounded on all sides by slums. He also may be ignoring gentrification going on in North OKC on a scale unmatched in the south side.

As far as universities go, he's got a point. North side has OCU, SNU, and OC? (I don't know if OC is in edmond or far north OKC) The south side only has that bible college across the street from Earlywine, the only public golf course on the south side, where most Oklahoma Citians live. Hmm, I wonder why they voted no?

This guy's snobbish confirmation bias is showing.

CGHill said...

OC is actually within Oklahoma City limits, though Edmond begins just beyond.

Speaking of city limits, they extend as far west as Gregory Road; the mail may go to Mustang or Yukon, but the residents are still in OKC.

Walker, Downtown Ranger said...

Wow, what a debate! Excellent comment, arduino. I must admit when I first read your comment and you were attacking me on terms of simplicity, I was mockingly thinking in my head, "Well this guy seems very anti-MAPS, probably voted that way, and he's on the southside...enough said, ironic that he's going to attack me for a simple analysis."

Thank you for what actually ended up being a really insight post. I have to refute some of the assets you say the south side has.. 2 Starbucks? Actually it has one, 240/Penn, because 89th/Western closed. Damn economy. And Java Dave's? I hope you don't mean the one at WRWA.. More people than N OKC, really? Didn't know that..I'd be interested in knowing more about that.

Bookstores.. there is nothing left in Crossroads Mall, I don't know if you knew that or not. Mardel's is a bookstore, but they boycotted Harry Potter, so what does that tell you.

Your argument about OKC infrastructure spending on the north side and private jobs on the north side kind of counter each other out. You argue that it's not fair how the govt has put more infrastructure on the north side (a questionable call) and then say that north side is composed of people who either own companies or work for those companies like Chesapeake. Fair enough. Then where do southsiders all work? Tinker or FAA? Yup. So those two arguments cancel each other out.

Walker, Downtown Ranger said...

I agree that it is a shame that the southside only has one hospital, but that came very close to changing. The truth is that we very nearly lost St. Anthony's downtown, when they wanted to move to SW 119th and May. There might still be a hospital there, but municipally, OKC has nothing to do with that. Hospitals are private enterprises that either go where the patients are or, more likely, where their doctors would prefer to live.

Of course with bookstores we're talking mainly about Bollinger's and especially Full Circle. But Barnes and Noble, Books a Million, Border's, etc..are all a very real part of that. Book stores are book stores.. it's very notable to me that Barnes & Noble and Borders aren't even going in on the south side, which is a lot easier to attract than it is to get an independent bookstore going (Full Circle is the result of a strong counter culture on the north side).

Clubs -- not to be racist, but we know that certain niche clubs as opposed to mainstream clubs aren't going to be considered a vibrant night scene by most people. People are looking for nice clubs, they find them in Bricktown and the north side. Most people are not looking for Hispanic clubs or gay clubs, and even then, gay clubs are all north, and there are also several Hispanic clubs up north too despite Hispanics being centered on the south side. And clubs around 89th and Western? Where? Which ones? There's strip malls, a church, two apartment complexes, and a few restaurants around there.. and it's surrounded by neighborhoods. Clubs at 89th and Western? Honestly if you wanted to point out a neat little enclave, your much much better bet would have been 89th and Penn which is a Korean enclave, which is a major outlier in my opinion..goes against the orthodox of north v. south OKC.

And I can't figure out what you're trying to say about gentrification. My blog is ALL about the gentrification of OKC. That is why I, a former southsider myself, can be so misperceived as a northsider by people who don't know. I went to Moore High School and grew up in the East Moore/Sooner Rd/Lake Draper area (which is actually fairly affluent). That may come as a shock to people who have been reading the urban planning mantra of my blog LOL.

Oh and there are two public golf courses in forgot Trosper, at SW 36th and Sunnylane. But I think that public golf courses should follow the private golf courses. I don't know for certain, and I would doubt it, but let's say that there ARE more public golf courses on the north side.. well how many more private golf courses are there up there? How many more people play golf up there? Compared to the southside, it's exponential. As for libraries.. there's more than one library on the south side. There's Capitol Hill, Wright, and Southern Oaks, and a new one going further south. The north side has Belle Isle, Bethany, The Village, Warr Acres, and a new one going further north.

Walker, Downtown Ranger said...

And just for Steve -- (sorry the response to arduino had to be broken up in order to be posted in full).

Jamba Juice would be great. Gotta love anywhere you can get a $4 beverage! For some reason that's what we equate with the "high life" -- no questions asked. As for the parts of Mustang, Yukon, Bethany, Warr Acres, Edmond, The Village, Nichols Hills, Moore, and others that I noticed.. you don't have to have an OKC address to vote. You have to have an OKC water bill. OKC's utilities network overlaps and covers some suburban entities.