Time Running Out To See The Gathering Place Model

A vast lawn on the east side of Riverside Drive, near 31st Street, will play an important part in Tulsa's future.

In a few years it will become the heart of a park, that will be as nice as anything on the planet.

It will cover more than 50 acres and stretch almost .8 of a mile down Riverside Drive.

But if you don't see the model of the project in the next 2-days, you're out of luck.

It's hard to imagine the of a $300-million park, unless you see it all in once place.

The Gather Place For Tulsa will be a centerpiece for the city.

Program Manager, Jeff Stava, says it involves a lot of development.

The entry has a lodge and meeting spaces that are similar to what you'd see in a national park.

Then there's a pond with a modern boat house and boat rentals.

5 different playgrounds will provide stimulating experiences for kids of all ages.

Plus, there are several gardens and nature areas.

Stava says the park will offer incredible variety.

"We kind of look at it as a place of 1000 experiences.

No matter when you come, or what mood you are in, you can find something different."

There will be trails for biking and running.

Plus a state-of-the arts skate park and tennis courts.

The park is the idea of Tulsa businessman George Kaiser.

His family foundation is providing 2/3rds of the funding.

He wants our city to have a centerpiece, like the parks around the Eiffel tower in Paris or New York's Central park.

This park will be unique and include two 300-foot land bridges.

They will connect the park to the west side of Riverside Drive.

The road will have two tunnels under lawns and gardens, that will make traffic noise disappear.

Hundreds of tons of dirt will be brought in to create hills and the park will be built out into the river the in two places.

The overall result, should be a park that brings a lot of attention and visitors to this area.

Stava says they're proud of the plans.

"I think this park is gonna be something that is truly iconic and I think it's going to become something that's pretty much a national park that people will want to come and see.

it will have high acclaim within the park community."

The model is in the gallery at the Hardesty Arts Center at 101 E. Acher.

It's open from 1:00 to 6:00 pm on Wednesday and from 1:00 to 9:00 pm Thursday.