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Team Better Block: Urban Planning in Action...and at Street Level

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In many cities across this country, urban planning initiatives are often celebrated for their fresh ideas or green principles, their small-town feeling or street-level appeal, their overall city-friendly yet neighborly vibe. But getting the folks in a given community to support urban planning goals before they have actually occurred is difficult to do --- mainly because such goals can seem too abstract, too hard to visualize or imagine. On this installment of ST, we chat with Andrew Howard, an urban planner with Team Better Block, which is an organization that (per its website) "works with cities, developers, and stakeholders to create quick, inexpensive, high-impact changes that improve and revitalize underused properties and highlight the potential for creating great 'Complete Streets.'" Howard, a transportation planner by training --- who's primarily focused on the successful integration of land use, transportation, and urban design --- will be involved in a Team Better Block event here in Tulsa today (Wednesday the 7th) near Whittier Square. Think of it as a day-long "extreme makeover" type of experience that's also meant to function as a real-life demonstration of community-centric urban planning. Those interested  in seeing a "Better Block" in action here in Tulsa will want to check out the part of Lewis Avenue that runs alongside the Circle Theater today from 4pm till 10pm. For more about Better Block, and about those (including Howard) behind this organization, please see this link --- and for more about the event in Tulsa in particular, you can go here.

Rich Fisher passed through KWGS about thirty years ago, and just never left. Today, he is the general manager of Public Radio Tulsa, and the host of KWGS’s public affairs program, StudioTulsa, which celebrated its twentieth anniversary in August 2012 . As host of StudioTulsa, Rich has conducted roughly four thousand long-form interviews with local, national, and international figures in the arts, humanities, sciences, and government. Very few interviews have gone smoothly. Despite this, he has been honored for his work by several organizations including the Governor's Arts Award for Media by the State Arts Council, a Harwelden Award from the Arts & Humanities Council of Tulsa, and was named one of the “99 Great Things About Oklahoma” in 2000 by Oklahoma Today magazine.
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