Economists outline benefits of MAPS to Greater Oklahoma City Chamber members

Via The Oklahoman 

By Jack Money 

A panel of economists told members of the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber this week the community continues to benefit from public and private investments brought in by a series of Metropolitan Area Projects initiatives.

Those economists, participating in the organization’s ninth annual State of the Economy event, tempered that enthusiasm somewhat, though, through expressed concerns about the ongoing slowdown in the state’s oil and gas economy.

Their analyses followed opening remarks by Percy Kirk, a senior vice president with Cox Communications and the chamber’s chairman, about the ongoing MAPS efforts.

While Oklahoma City residents so far have approved initiatives that have raised about $1.8 billion and in December will vote on another MAPS package that would raise about another billion dollars, Kirk said estimates put total public and private investment so far into Oklahoma City’s downtown area since 1993 at about $7 billion.

Robert Dauffenbach, director of the Center for Economic and Management Research at the University of Oklahoma's Price College of Business, said Oklahoma City’s progress since the Great Recession of 2008 and 2009 has been “just tremendous."

He observed that over the past decade, Oklahoma City gained 75,000 jobs to boost its employment numbers by 13% and increase its share of real income in Oklahoma from 33% to 38%, adding that each percentage point real income shift represented $1.8 billion in value.

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