An analysis by RegionTrack released recently found that the impact of Oklahoma City’s investments in the Metropolitan Area Projects (MAPS) totals more than $7 billion.
The report extends previous work completed in 2005 and 2009, which primarily focused on the influence of the first MAPS projects and the accompanying investment downtown. The new report updates outcomes for these early projects and provides an initial examination of the more recent efforts.
The overall results suggest that the initial public investment in MAPS triggered substantial additional public and private sector investment. To date, approximately $1.8 billion in city investment has been used or earmarked for the three rounds of MAPS projects in Oklahoma City. Additional city infrastructure expenditures in the period totaled $690 million and worked to enhance the outcome of the MAPS projects. Other federal, state and local government entities invested an additional $600 million in the downtown area. Total public investment through city spending on MAPS and investments by other public sector entities reached $3.1 billion between 1995 and 2018.
Private investment spending in the downtown study area similarly surged along with the initial MAPS projects and continued steadily through 2018. Estimated private investment spending totaled $3.9 billion between 1995 and 2018. Private investment gains are highly visible in the office, hotel, medical and research, residential, food service and entertainment sectors.
In total, the combination of city investment through MAPS along with other public and private sector investment in the downtown study area reached an estimated $7 billion in the full MAPS era.
The report found that the revitalization of the downtown area has been long-lived with sustained increases in private sector investment.
“You can see that the momentum created by the initial projects in the 1990s continues today,” said Mark Snead, economist and president of RegionTrack. “The public spending on MAPS projects led to sustained private investment over a long period of time, and the completion of the remaining MAPS 3 projects will create even more momentum.”
One other policy finding in the report was that private investment was not deterred during the two-year oil and gas recession in 2015 and 2016.
“I think we all know MAPS has been great for our city, but this shows just how vital it is to our economic growth,” said Roy Williams, president and CEO of the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber. “With the increase in visitation, the growth of housing and hotels and all of the other private investments, we have a true destination that will only grow – creating more jobs and spurring additional investment.”
In addition to evaluating the public and private investment totals, the report also looks specifically at downtown and the impacts on its revitalization since the passage of MAPS 3 in 2009. The study found:
- The total market value of properties nearly doubled between 2009 and 2017 – a gain of $1.88 billion which exceeds the $1.8 million expended by the City on all MAPS programs to date
- Population in downtown grew by 20.8 percent, adding 2,200 new residents
- The rate of population growth is twice the average for the county, and three-times the average for the state
- 2,700 housing units have been added during this period, and the median age is falling
- School enrollment in the downtown area has increased, including more than 800 residents enrolled in college or graduate school
- More than 9,000 jobs were added, and growth far surpassed levels in the county, metro and state
- Most new workers commute from outside the study area, but inside Oklahoma County
- An initial 1,220 hotel rooms were added in the area following the 1993 vote, with another 1,532 rooms added since 2009
- When the Omni Oklahoma City Hotel opens with 605 rooms in 2021, the total number of hotels will reach 3,768, a nearly 10-fold increase over the number of rooms available at the start of the MAPS projects
- Visitation/participation in the downtown area has increased from nearly 6.5 million in 2003 to more than 11 million annually in 2017
To view the full report, visit www.okcchamber.com/mapsimpact.