Columbus, Ohio, is where Tulsa officials are looking for inspiration this year on an annual intercity visit.
Incoming Tulsa Regional Chamber Chair David Stratton said higher education is one of the things they’re taking a close look at, including Columbus’ community college and ties to Ohio State University.
"And just how that helps them attract more people and really make for a diverse workforce, that was a big piece that we looked at," Stratton said.
Diversity and inclusion is another area they’re learning more about from Columbus, especially from a leadership group seeking to boost women’s position in the workforce.
"Pay equity, promoting women to higher positions. And that was, I think, for us, kind of the last piece that just made Columbus a really nice fit which mirrored a lot of the priorities that we’ve got at the chamber," Stratton said.
Support for entrepreneurs is another thing officials are looking at. And the firm developing Tulsa’s Arena District Master Plan is headquartered in Columbus.
"And they’ve done Columbus’ arena district master plan. So, we’re looking for similarities there and seeing what they’ve done and how they’ve implemented their plan," said Tulsa Regional Chamber President and CEO Mike Neal.
Tulsa’s Arena District Master Plan is in the late stages. Design firm MKSK is proposing some bold moves, like redeveloping or demolishing the Page Belcher Federal Building to better connect the BOK Center and Cox Business Center.