A Sense of Place: Midwest City Original Mile

An IQC team worked with the City of Midwest City to identify walkable links and nodes for placemaking projects to enhance the sense of place for the city's Original Mile neighborhood.

Midwest City, Oklahoma | Fall 2016
View the Final Report Below

In the fall of 2016, IQC staff and graduate assistants collaborated with the City of Midwest City to examine the historic center of town, known as the Original Mile. The neighborhood is located just north of Tinker Air Force Base and, in 1951, received an award for being a model planned community.

The City of Midwest City sought to identify planning, design, and programming concepts for key public spaces and potential nodes of activity that could bolster the Original Mile’s brand and identity. The IQC team conducted a walking tour to observe conditions in the area, led stakeholder interviews, and held discussions with Original Mile Steering Committee members to inform a series of recommendations.

This report focuses on four distinct locations and a network of pedestrian-friendly streets to connect them. Physical strategies were guided by the following principles:

  • Reinforce and encourage the “complete community” found within the Original Mile.
  • Reimagine buildings and open spaces in key locations to demonstrate possibilities for activity node development.
  • Identify strategies to create linkages for walking and biking between nodes, within the neighborhood, and to nearby destinations.
  • Incorporate art and culture into design solutions to add interest and to strengthen the brand of the neighborhood.

The City of Midwest City and the Original Mile neighborhood have taken great measures to improve the conditions of the neighborhood. With continued efforts, the Original Mile will move towards a more connected, lively neighborhood that encourages activity from visitors and residents alike.