Saturday, January 2, 2010

Bricktown, banned subject?

Notice how anytime someone talks about Bricktown, whether it's a positive or negative reflection, it draws so much criticism and contention and disparaging insults. You can't win for trying. If you make suggestions for Bricktown then the people who claim to be the ones in the know will tell you that you know nothing and tell you "the reality" of Bricktown, and they're ticked off that you dared to second-guess their authority.

Bricktown is all about authority and whose turf it is, don't you forget that bubba. If you hope for more development, you hear a hopeless tale of the economy. If you talk about all of the positive changes someone else forces the subject to all of Bricktown's squandered potential. If you focus too much on it then you're also bound to hear that you're ignoring all of downtown's other districts that are doing exciting things.

So what is the official stance on Bricktown? What is the accepted "PC" way to discuss Bricktown?

Rule 1. If you're not an insider, don't dare suggest ways it can improve. Leave it to the professionals.
Rule 2. Don't step on any toes, everyone who is an insider in Bricktown is working very hard and nobody is doing anything wrong.
Rule 3. Don't make other downtown communities feel second-rate, they're also just as important.
Rule 4. Don't bother attempting to differentiate between the "Bricktown That Could Be" and "The Bricktown That Is.." to everyone in OKC, they're the same.
Rule 5. Stop complaining about Lower Bricktown, unless you're Robin Williams having visions of "Redneck Venice," it is so passe to brood over the south half.
Rule 6. The one development component that is especially out of bounds (even more so than residential) is retail. Instead why aren't YOU shopping at Bricktown's whopping 5 retail establishments?
Rule 7. Don't ever, EVER, criticize the city's dedication to Bricktown upkeep. After all, they built the Ballpark. The end.
Rule 8. Don't forget that Bricktown is so 1990. It's all about Core to Shore. That's where the future of improvement is. The chances of Bricktown losing momentum are 1 to a million, not gonna happen, ever.
Rule 9. Don't sound too positive, because then you're complacent and you're not trying hard enough.
Rule 10. No matter what you say, expect critical feedback. Everyone has their own unique and highly contentious take on Bricktown these days.

I think these are some good guidelines to bear in mind for future Bricktown discussions, to avoid stepping on any toes and to promote being sensitive towards everyone involved in the process.

Or should Bricktown just be a banned subject altogether? Whatever we do, let's avoid taking a good, hard look at all costs.


Mark said...

I'm guessing you received a lot of negative feedback on your most recent Bricktown post?

Anonymous said...

So, do you care to amend any of this now that you've talked to some folks in Bricktown?
You know I think you've done some great analysis on this site. But this post really strayed from what I know, see and hear.

Walker, Downtown Ranger said...

Well I believe that this post wasn't an attack on any one side, and I included some potential criticism of my own strong point of view on Bricktown in the Top 10, which I wouldn't amend.

I still believe talking about Bricktown is contentious. Perhaps if I were to ease up it would be on the "don't talk about retail" and "don't talk about bad property owners" points, but even to some extent, there is still a certain uneasiness in dialogue.

I would have to say no because I still think way too many people don't want to face the realities of Bricktown (i.e., Core to Shore proponents especially), which was backed up even more by my meeting with people. Which I certainly appreciate the opportunity you put together for me on that, Steve.