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Edmond Exchange, March 4

New restroom facilities are being constructed in Stephenson Park for the use of park patrons and those visiting the newly renovated Rodkey House Event and Education Annex of the Edmond Historical Society & Museum. [PHOTO BY DOUG HOKE, THE OKLAHOMAN]

New restroom facilities are being constructed in Stephenson Park for the use of park patrons and those visiting the newly renovated Rodkey House Event and Education Annex of the Edmond Historical Society & Museum. [PHOTO BY DOUG HOKE, THE OKLAHOMAN]

New park restroom

New restrooms are being built at Stephenson Park. The restrooms will serve park patrons and visitors at the newly renovated Rodkey House Event and Education Annex of the Edmond Historical Society and Museum, which opened in October.

The house is on the west side of Stephenson Park, off Littler Avenue between Fourth and Fifth streets.

The original contract was for $182,960. City council members this week added another $6,230 after a water line broke. They also added the cost of special hardware that is Bluetooth capable, which the city has at other venues such as the Festival Market Place and Barnett Field Splash Pad.

The Rodkey family teamed with the the city and the Edmond Historical Society and Museum to preserve the home. Private donations aided a renovation estimated to cost $300,000.

Built in 1900 by Isaac and Catherine Rodkey, owners of the Rodkey Mill and Rodkey's Best Flour, the Victorian "Painted Lady" home was donated to the city and moved to its current location in 2007.

The Rodkey family has been prominent in the Edmond community since 1897. Isaac Rodkey served on the school board, was a board member of the First National Bank and was a Mason.

The Rodkey House is available for private rentals for parties, receptions, small weddings and meetings. For more information, call 340-0078 or go to www.edmondhistory.org.

Food store expansion

A site plan to expand Aldi Food Market, 1001 W Edmond Road, was approved this week by the city council by a vote of 4-1. Councilwoman Elizabeth Waner cast the single vote against the site plan. The store will be expanded 1,235 square feet on the east side. Planning Director Randy Entz said expansion of less than 20 percent of the floor space would not require a site plan application.

"However, the store does not meet the required number of parking spaces, which requires a variance and site plan approval," he said.

Restaurant, tire store plat approved

A final plat for a Zaxby's restaurant and a new Firestone Tires across the street from OU Medical Center was approved this week by the city council.

The 2.06-acre property is east of Bryant Avenue and north of Bryant Grove Apartments, on the south side of Medical Center Drive. Owner Malek Massad requested approval of the plat for property that is zoned neighborhood commercial.

Firestone Tires closed after InvenTrust Properties Corp. started a redevelopment project at its 286,579-square-foot shopping center at Second Street and Bryant Avenue.

Buildings where Firestone and CiCi's Pizza were located will be torn down. A third building north of Famous Footwear also will be destroyed.

CiCi's Pizza moved to the northern section of the shopping center. Torchy's Taco, which has a location in Norman, is expected to open where the Firestone building once stood. Zaxby's restaurant is new to Edmond.

City clerk starts scholarship

University of Central Oklahoma alumnus Kory Atcuson, who received his master of public administration degree from the university, has established the Brett Sharp Scholarship for Public Administration in the UCO College of Liberal Arts to honor Sharp, his former political science professor. The scholarship will be awarded annually to an MPA student. Atcuson is the chief diversity and equity officer/city clerk for the city of Edmond.

Arbor Day posters

The Arbor Day Poster Contest began as a nationwide program for fifth-grade students, sponsored by the National Arbor Day Foundation. Edmond Public Schools teachers began participating in the program in 2001, sending one poster from each school to compete in the statewide contest. In 2011, the National Arbor Day Foundation ceased to administer the Arbor Day Poster Contest. The Edmond school district and Urban Forestry Commission saw value in continuing the program. "Trees In Our Town" is open to all Edmond fifth-grade students including those who are homeschooled. The exhibit opens Saturday and continues through April 29 at the Edmond Historical Society and Museum, 431 S Boulevard.

Need answers?

Reader Elaine Phillips asked: "Do you know if they will put a traffic light on Covell Road and Griffin, the entrances of Fairfax? As traffic increases with the new hotel and convention center, plus Crest Foods, it will be increasingly harder to leave the subdivision safely, because of the hill on the east side of Griffin and the new amount of traffic."

City Engineer Steve Manek answered: "That traffic light is to be installed by the developer of the Lakes at Cross Timbers with the construction of the 100th home."

Reader Eric Winscher asked: "Any idea what's going to go in on 33rd and Broadway now that Cashsaver is gone? Timeline?"

City Planning Director Randy Entz answered: "Nothing that I have heard. Chances are we will only hear once they apply for a sign."

Have questions about Edmond, its roadwork, traffic or capital improvements? Email Diana Baldwin at dbaldwin@oklahoman.com.

Follow Diana Baldwin on Twitter @Edmond_Beat.

Diana Baldwin

Diana Baldwin has been an Oklahoma journalist since 1976. She covered the Oklahoma City bombing and covered the downfall of Oklahoma City police forensic chemist Joyce Gilchrist misidentifying evidence. She wrote the original stories about the... Read more ›

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