On December 6, 2023, the Tulsa City Council voted 8-0 to approve the rezoning of the 71st Street Retail Corridor after a year-long collaborative effort with the Tulsa Planning Office that included stakeholder feedback meetings and community engagement.

One of the City of Tulsa’s 2023 Mayor/Council Retreat priorities was to enhance specific corridors within the city, including the 71st Street commercial hub. It has faced challenges due to customized and restrictive zoning regulations dating back to the 1970s. The area previously included 19 Planned Unit Developments (PUDs) which have been amended more than 200 times, each with their own standards. This rezoning simplifies and replaces these complex zoning regulations with one unified, modern set of development standards.

“For decades, the 71st Street Retail Corridor has been burdened with plans reflecting a different era’s priorities and visions for development,” District 7 City Councilor Lori Decter Wright said. “I am excited to see how this rezoning will transform this major shopping corridor. By replacing the complex, outdated rules with a streamlined and business-friendly approach, we are sending a clear message: this corridor is open for innovation, growth, and a vibrant future.”

Covering 723 acres, or 1.13 square miles, the 71st Street commercial corridor is integral to Tulsa’s economic health. It encompasses 183 properties from just west of Memorial Drive to Garnett Road.

“The 71st Street corridor is essential to Tulsa’s economic vitality and quality of life,” said District 8 City Councilor Phil Lakin. “So many of us shop, eat, work and enjoy life thanks to the small and national businesses that serve this area. While these retailers have responsibilities in maintaining and promoting this corridor, the City does too. I look forward to the continued success of the 71st Street area.”

This rezoning initiative is part of a plan to promote redevelopment and enhancement of the 71st Street retail corridor which includes beautification and commercial redevelopment incentives. Beautification projects will be funded by a Tax Increment Finance (TIF) district associated with the new Scheel’s store under construction at Woodland Hills Mall, and by City of Tulsa right-of-way maintenance funds. More information about commercial redevelopment incentives is available from PartnerTulsa and TEDC, the City’s economic development teams.

“We enjoyed working with City Councilors and property owners to unlock potential to reuse and revitalize properties along the 71st Street retail corridor and hope to see transformation begin in the corridor in the near future,” said Susan Miller, Director of the Tulsa Planning Office. “In combination with City beautification efforts, our goal is to facilitate a predictable process as property owners find new tenants and redevelop their properties.”

For more information about the rezoning process and the 71st Street Corridor Revitalization Project, visit the project webpage at tulsaplanning.org/71st.