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Broken Arrow Mayor Craig Thurmond was awarded first place honors at the 2018 City Livability Awards Program during The U.S. Conference of Mayors’ 86th Annual Meeting in Boston.
The award recognizes mayoral leadership in developing and implementing programs that improve the quality of life in America’s cities, focusing on the leadership, creativity, and innovation demonstrated by the mayors. This year’s winning cities were selected by former mayors from a pool of over 150 applicants.
“Receiving the City Livability Award is a tremendous honor for Broken Arrow,” said Thurmond. “Not so long ago, Main Street was almost derelict, with very few businesses and zero foot traffic. Today, residents and visitors will find a vibrant downtown with unique restaurants, local artisan products, entertainment and cultural experiences that have transformed our Rose District into one of the most popular destinations in the region.”
This is the 39th year in which cities have competed for the award, which is sponsored by the Conference of Mayors and Waste Management, Inc., the nation’s largest environmental solutions provider.
"Our City Livability Awards Program gives us the chance to express our pride in cities’ mayoral leadership in making urban areas cleaner, safer, and more livable,” said Tom Cochran, CEO and Executive Director of the Conference of Mayors. “We are grateful to Waste Management for its many years of support for the City Livability Awards Program, and for the opportunity to showcase the innovation and commitment of mayors and city governments across the country."
This year’s first place winners were Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn for a local program focused on teens and violence reduction, as well as Broken Arrow Mayor Craig Thurmond for the redevelopment and revitalization of the Rose District.
US Conference of Mayors - City Livability Awards - Broken Arrow from GVI on Vimeo.
ABOUT BROKEN ARROW’S ROSE DISTRICT
In 2005, the City began implementing a redevelopment plan for a new arts and entertainment area in the historic part of Broken Arrow, which over decades had become a neglected and economically challenged area. Many new businesses, with expenditures of over $25 million, relocated into this once declining district. These changes have elevated the quality of life for residents and brought more than 1,000 new jobs and over 70 new businesses into the area. Over the last six years, new development has resulted in an increase of almost $4 million in local property taxes. Annual municipals sales taxes collected in the area during that same time-period have also gone up from about $18,885 to over $400,000 – a 2,025% increase.