MOORE — Looking at bridge project photos from Steven Weitzman and his Creative Design Resolutions Inc., it is safe to say he thinks bridges should reflect their communities.
Weitzman, chief executive officer and president of the Brentwood, Maryland-based CDR, spoke to the Moore City Council on Monday. Moore’s planned SW 34 bridge over Interstate 35 and the proposed railroad underpass at SE 4 could potentially receive Weitzman’s creative design work. Council members viewed Weitzman’s presentation, but no contract was signed.
City Manager Brooks Mitchell said Weitzman has had contracts with the Oklahoma Department of Transportation and will seek guidance from the community on themes that should be used in the two transportation projects.
Weitzman said his company has done transportation design work in Oklahoma for 13 years. CDR has worked for a quarter of the state transportation departments in the U.S. and has been in business since 1998.
He said bridges, such as those over I-35 and elsewhere in the state, should “represent the place.”
“Why create a wall when you can create a window … that tells a story of an area.”
His presentation included views of Norman’s Lindsey Street bridge over I-35. CDR’s design features an image of the University of Oklahoma’s Seed Sower and brick architecture similar to that found on the OU campus. Another of his Norman projects is the Rock Creek Road bridge over I-35. That bridge features images representing quarter horse races and the saddle work that was once a part of that area.
Weitzman often spoke to members of the public attending the meeting. He said the art design of bridges and retaining walls would depend upon input from the community.
“The solutions have to be by you,” he said. “Because you would be involved in it.”
He said he came to Moore at a disadvantage because he does not know the city’s politics or history “or what you want.” But he said that is also an advantage. If his company gets a contract, there will be community meetings to gather input.
The agenda item asked the council to authorize city staffers to negotiate an agreement for Weitzman’s services. Ward 1 Councilwoman Danielle McKenzie asked if it should be put out for competitive bidding.
Mitchell said the state Transportation Department “has given its blessing” to Weitzman through his other projects and the city should go with that company. He said the city would proceed with negotiations, “but this is not a done deal.” The council OK’d the staff to proceed.
The council approved rezoning requests that would allow for housing and commercial development. Mayor Glenn Lewis said the rezoning requests show the city is growing.
In other action
The council also approved declaring as surplus the fire department’s 2001 American LaFrance 75-foot ladder truck. The city has a newer 100-foot ladder truck. With the surplus status, the old truck can be traded to Texas A&M Engineering Extension Service for $40,000 in training services. Fire Chief Gary Bird said it was “one of the best deals we’ve had in a long time.”
The council accepted a contract with Matthews Trenching Co. for the Little River Park sanitary sewer interceptor rehabilitation / replacement project. The amount is not to exceed $1.27 million. Jared Jakubowski, Moore’s grants manager, said the project extends from SW 4 to SW 19. He said it will be paid for with federal Housing and Urban Development funds.
An agreement was made with Eagle Consultants to evaluate wastewater development options for land south of SE 34 and east of Sunnylane Road for $65,000 plus expenses. Mitchell said it is to look at flood plain and sewer issues and maintenance costs “down the road.”