Business Groups Push For Downtown Edmond Renovations

Friday, August 15th 2014, 10:11 pm
By: News 9

One metro city is looking to revamp its downtown area to draw in new customers.

Several business groups want to make downtown Edmond a total experience for shopping, eating and hanging out, all while attracting a new clientele.

“Foot traffic is a big deal here, and we would like anything that would help us out, especially just getting people just walking by,” Café Evoke Manager, Garron Park said.

It can be a challenge for businesses. When the sun goes down on downtown Edmond, much of the foot traffic goes with it, but now there's a push to fix that.

“It would be awesome to get some more places downtown that kind of are bringing in a new era of customers walking around on Saturday nights, Friday nights, just hanging out,” Park said.

With the University of Central Oklahoma right next door, there's an untapped clientele for downtown.

Janet Yowell with the Edmond Economic Development Authority says a transformation is underway in the city's master plan.

“We'd love to see some more multifamily or some sort of loft-type living, and there's opportunity for that in some of the areas downtown,” Yowell said. “Parking, not real glamorous, but it's always been a big issue that we discussed, and so how we make it easier for people.”

They want to accelerate it with some changes that can make a quick but significant impact, attracting more people to the businesses.

“We can't get stagnant,” said Yowell. “We can't have the same people look at it, making the same decisions all of the time.”

That's where the public comes in. The Central Edmond Urban Board, which makes recommendations to City Council, wants to hear from anyone who has ideas.