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      Sidewalk Plans Scrapped At Gathering Place

      It's called The Gathering Place, but changes have been made to the way that some people would have gathered there."We were planning on putting a sidewalk that was gonna connect to this location run it all the way along here all the way up around the circle to 21st street and Veterans Park, get it all tied together," said Paul Zachary.An additional way to access the park, until residents in the neighborhood adjacent to the area said hold on a minute."The problem would be parking on our narrow streets that we've got already," said resident Roger Goodhead.Many residents were concerned that every day parking would resemble July 4th."It's very similar around Skelly stadium or across from the tulsa fairgrounds whenever there's event their streets fill up and it really is a real nuisance for them," said Zachary. "Our argument was the fact that you've got the trail right here on the west bank. Why spend the money, spend the city's money, with all the other things that are needed and put a sidewalk on the east side of Riverside? It just didn't make sense," said Goodhead."I was neither for nor against," said Frank Ward, who also owns a home in the neighborhood."If the advance planners feel that people can benefit from a sidewalk, more power to 'em," he said.Nevertheless, the outcry has caused plans for the sidewalk to be scrapped."That shows that public engagement works," said Tulsa city councilor GT Bynum, pleased with the city's response."I'm proud of our engineers that they found a way to make it work, listening to the neighborhood feedback, not just plowing ahead with a proposal but being responsive to the citizens concerns," he said.
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