Attendees at Wednesday’s Ardmore Community Forum at the Ardmore Convention Center were given an unexpected surprise. Instead of listening to city officials speak, they took a video tour with Mayor  Sheryl Ellis who spoke to officials at various locations all over the city. In fact it was Ellis who had the idea to do the video.
“The video allowed us to impart so much more information in detail,” Ellis said. “We can also reuse it in more places. It will be on our website and it can even be used as a marketing tool.”
The tour began at the construction taking place on Caddo St. where Mayor Ellis spoke with Assistant City Manager Kevin Boatright. He gave an update on the Streetscape Project along with providing a description of downtown Ardmore once construction ends.
“Basically what we’re trying to achieve is new, wider sidewalks with trees that provide shade,” Boatright said. “The sidewalks will be wider so businesses can pull merchandise outside and restaurants can do outside dining. There’s also going to be a calming effect because we’re making it two-way traffic instead of one.” The two lines will be divided by a median center lane.
The video tour did a comprehensive tour, highlighting different city departments and the the work they have been doing over the course of the year. Topics included roadwork projects, the new businesses that have opened over the course of the year, the work the Parks and Recreation Dept. has been doing, and the dramatic reduction in crime the city has experienced over the course of the past few years.
In addition to the discussion of projects underway, they also announced some new projects. One of the projects that will likely interest area residents is the announcement that McAlister’s Deli will be coming to Ardmore Commons.
Ellis perhaps described the event best in her closing statement.
“This is a year where we focused on completing projects rather than launching another round. Sometimes the city suffers growing pains, but we look to find the best practice for our solutions. Ardmore continues to remain a force in Southern Oklahoma, and it is our plan to grow our importance in the years to come.”