Neighborhood Development and Improvement

Matt Trotter / KWGS

The City of Tulsa on Tuesday officially launched a 12-month process to plan the redevelopment of publicly owned land in north Tulsa — land taken from Black and Native communities over the past 100 years.

The city, Tulsa Authority for Economic Opportunity and Tulsa Development Authority chose Philadelphia-based architecture firm Wallace Robert and Todd to lead the Kirkpatrick Heights/Greenwood Master Plan. Several local firms and an 11-member leadership committee have been tasked with making sure the plan aligns with the community's wishes.

Our guest is Carlos Moreno, a Tulsa-based graphic designer, researcher, and freelance writer who originally hails from California, and who's been living and working in Tulsa since the 1990s. Moreno joins us to discuss his new book, "The Victory of Greenwood." This volume presents a novel and engrossing history of Tulsa's Greenwood community by offering more than 20 different biographical portraits of such key "Black Wall Street" figures as John and Loula Williams, B.C. Franklin, the Rev. Ben H. Hill, Edwin McCabe, George Monroe, and various others.

On this edition of ST, we learn about how homeowners in the Greater Tulsa area can take simple steps -- in both their lawncare and their gardening practices -- to improve and preserve the quality of our local water, land, and ecology. The Yard By Yard Community Resiliency Project is an initiative of the Oklahoma Conservation Commission; the project started in OKC and is now happening in Tulsa.

We're pleased to speak once again with the University of Michigan-based historian and bestselling author, Scott Ellsworth, whose books include "The Secret Game," "The World Beneath Their Feet," and "Death in a Promised Land," the last-named being his account of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre, a pioneering text which first appeared in the 1980s. Originally from Tulsa, Ellsworth has just published an all-important follow-up to "Death in a Promised Land," which he tells us about.

Illustration by Marlin Lavanhar (via The Black Wall Street Times)

On this edition of ST, we're pleased to speak with Marlin Lavanhar, a Unitarian Universalist minister who's been based at All Souls Church here in Tulsa since 2000. A longtime social justice activist and tireless human rights advocate, Lavanhar recently launched a series of editorial cartoons focused on the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre -- and on the urgent need for reparations to be conveyed to those directly affected by this vast, tragic, century-old crime.

Our guest on ST is Anna America, the Chief of Culture and Recreation & Parks Director for the City of Tulsa. The Tulsa Parks Department recently presented findings from a series of public-opinion surveys it's conducted over the past several months regarding its master plan. The consulting firm known as GreenPlay was employed in the execution of these surveys, as America tells us. She adds that more than half of those surveyed said that they'd "probably or definitely support" various potential funding sources for increasing the Parks Department's budget.

Our guests on StudioTulsa are the Tulsa-based artists, community advocates, and avid cyclists Shane Darwent and Kolby Ari. They are the co-presenters of Cycling the Gap, a three-part series of guided, community-minded bike rides here in Tulsa that will take place on May 1st, 8th, and 15th. The ride scheduled for tomorrow (Saturday the 1st) will focus on Sustainability. The following two rides -- happening on the following two Saturdays -- will look at matters of Infrastructure and Black Art & Commerce.

(Note: This interview first aired back in May.) Our guest is Walter Johnson, the Winthrop Professor of History and Professor of African and African American Studies at Harvard University. His new book is a far-reaching, unflinching, and complicated account of race relations in his hometown: St. Louis, Missouri. From Lewis and Clark's 1804 expedition to the 2014 uprising in Ferguson, the course of American events, Johnson argues, has been charted in St. Louis.

On this edition of ST, a discussion from our archives. In 2017, we spoke with Richard Rothstein, a research associate of the Economic Policy Institute and a Fellow at the Thurgood Marshall Institute of the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. Widely seen as a leading authority on U.S.

Our guest is Walter Johnson, the Winthrop Professor of History and Professor of African and African American Studies at Harvard University. His new book is a far-reaching, unflinching, and complicated account of race relations in his hometown: St. Louis, Missouri. From Lewis and Clark's 1804 expedition to the 2014 uprising in Ferguson, the course of American events, Johnson argues, has been charted in St. Louis. His book moreover shows how the imperialism, racism, and capitalism that have defined the city have likewise defined our nation's history.

On this edition of ST, we learn about Tulsa Remote, the talent-recruitment initiative of George Kaiser Family Foundation that's now in its second year -- and that has received, since it began, more than 10,000 applications from all over the globe (and all over the nation). Our guest is Tulsa native Aaron Bolzle, the executive director of this increasingly popular program.

Our guest on ST is Jon Steinman, the producer and host of an internationally syndicated radio show and podcast called Deconstructing Dinner. A Canadian resident of Nelson, BC, he joins us to discuss his new book, "Grocery Story: The Promise of Food Co-ops in the Age of Grocery Giants." By closely studying -- and also drawing engaging stories from -- many different American and Canadian food co-ops, this book makes a case for the eventual (and radical?) transformation of the grocery store in the 21st century.

On this edition of ST, we learn about the City of Tulsa's in-depth and multifaceted efforts to address issues of resilience, equity, and racial disparity across various demographic and geographic sections of our community. Our guest is DeVon Douglass, who was recently appointed by Mayor G.T. Bynum as Tulsa's Chief Resilience Officer. Before this appointment, Douglass served as the Economic Opportunity and Poverty Policy Analyst for the Oklahoma Policy Institute.

The Blue Zones Project will present a series of events here in Tulsa this week, and so, on this edition of ST Medical Monday, we listen back to a Blue Zones-related interview from our archives. In 2016, we spoke with one Tony Buettner. Several years ago, Tony's brother Dan executed the original Blue Zones study, and then wrote a bestselling book about same.

(Note: This interview originally aired back in February.) The author and journalist Mark Whitaker is our guest on StudioTulsa. A former managing editor of CNN Worldwide, and a previous Washington bureau chief for NBC News, Whitaker has a new book out, which he tells us about.

On this edition of our show, we learn all about Kendall Whittier, Incorporated, or KWI, which is a neighborhood-minded and long-running nonprofit now marking its 50th Anniversary. KWI is, per its website, "a home-grown organization incorporating self-sufficiency for our neighbors through food security, nutritional health, and well-being." KWI -- the only food pantry in the Tulsa area that actually delivers to its participants' doorsteps -- will host an event tonight (Thursday the 7th) in celebartion of its Golden Anniversary.

The Arena District in downtown Tulsa can seem, at times, like the heart of the city -- like when there's a big show at the BOK Center, or a large convention at the Cox Convention Center. At other times...it's pretty quiet. So, one key question is how best to turn a limited-use area into a thriving year-round destination. This matter is now being explored by the City of Tulsa's Master Planning Process; it's a process that's being underway for months now.

On this installment of ST, our guest is Cameron Walker, the Executive Director of Tulsa Habitat for Humanity (or THFH). This crucial nonprofit recently received a $6.7 million grant from the Anne and Henry Zarrow Foundation, and therefore, as we learn on today's program, THFH is transitioning from building 25 to 30 houses per year (which is what it does in the Tulsa area currently) to building 150 houses per year (which is what it aims to be doing four years from now).

On this edition of ST, we learn about the Unity Heritage Neighborhoods Design Workshop, a program to create designs, plans, and visions for future development in neighborhoods immediately north of downtown Tulsa. These include the Brady Heights Historic District, Emerson Elementary, Greenwood, and the Evans-Fintube site. Throughout the fall, the Notre Dame University Graduate Design Studio has been viewing the landscape and speaking with community stakeholders on how they want the neighborhood to look and feel as they develop their design ideas.