MuskogeePhoenix.com, Muskogee, OK

Local News

May 7, 2011

Construction could make York Street lively

As the city opens up South York Street with the construction of five lanes from Hancock Street to Peak Boulevard, it will become a new development area.

“York Street has slowed down a bit, but traffic will pick up when we complete the road widening,” said City Manager Greg Buckley.

“York Street is very viable,” said City Attorney John Vincent.

With the widening of York, there is some prime commercial property available, Vincent said.

Muskogee businessmen Charlie Yandell and Charlie Randolph are laying money on it. They have invested in 13 acres on the northwest side of York and Peak.

“It’s going to go,” Yandell said about business on York Street.

The widening of York Street is to be complete by mid-2013, Vincent said.

Yandell and Randolph are preparing their land for development.

“I hope they get it going and it will be done on time — there is interest by commercial business along there,” Randolph said. “The more taxes for the city, the better it is. I’d just like to see them get started.”

Yandell, who owns a business and other property in the area, said they’re thinking about a Kum & Go or a QuikTrip and are getting a lot of inquiries.

P&K Properties, with principals Kenny Greer, Ronnie Boswell and Patrick Cale, owns about five acres on the northeast corner of York Street and Peak Boulevard.

They, too, are looking at a QuikTrip or a Love’s convenience store, Greer said.

“I think it is going to boom,” Greer said of York Street. “Just come out here between 4:30 and 6:30 p.m. — the traffic is ridiculous. The street should have been widened years ago.”

P&K Properties also owns a couple of acres, a 7,500-square-foot building that is rented, and they are finishing an 11,500-square-foot building for rent in the area. They are looking at a development for themselves, and one other person is seeking development there, Greer said.

Cale said he is concerned that a preliminary plan for the widening of York Street does not seem to include water, sewer and storm drainage along that street. Planning a major street project without planning for those issues would seem to be almost a crime, Cale said.

“Putting in water, sewer and storm drainage later would cost seven times more,” Cale said.

 There is already water on part of it, and the city is looking at water, sewer and storm drainage on all of it, Buckley said.

The city commissioned a comprehensive land use map in May 2010 from a national consulting firm, Houseal Lavigne Associates. It is to include an outline of projected growth in Muskogee with detailed plans for nine areas of the city.

The report should tell what experts see happening on: Shawnee Bypass, York Street, Main Street, 32nd Street, Okmulgee Avenue, Chandler Road, Peak Boulevard, Muskogee Turnpike and downtown, said City Planner Gary Garvin.

The land use map will recommend appropriate zoning classifications for different parts of Muskogee, he said.

Houseal Lavigne is scheduled to present their draft report on nine areas of the city for review to the Muskogee Planning Commission on May 16, Garvin said.

Reach Donna Hales at (918) 684-2923 or dhales @muskogeephoenix.com.

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