QuikTrip, the Tulsa, Oklahoma based retail group have agreed to sponsor a section of the park covering 3.7-acres.
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George Kaiser / Getty
The George Kaiser Family Foundation‘s ‘A Gathering Place for Tulsa’ project is proposed park for the citizens of the city, that will cover 66.5-acres along the Arkansas River, connecting three currently undeveloped sites with the existing River Parks, stretching from 26th to 34th Street.
Once completed expectations are that ‘A Gathering Place for Tulsa’ will transform the the city’s waterfront into a dynamic and active space, whilst improving the city’s social, economic and environmental sustainability.
The George Kaiser Family Foundation has committed the sum of $200 million to see the “A Gathering Place” project take shape, with construction expected to officially get under way with an official groundbreaking in the summer of next year.
According to Jeff Stava, project manager for “A Gathering Place”, in order to create a park with a broad diversity of landscape experience, we wanted the four existing properties to be experienced as a continuous space, rather than segmented parcels.
“We also heard that the public of Tulsa were interested that the park would have an open lawn area, so we integrated the Great Lawn and Lakeview Lawn into the design, that will hopefully provide ample opportunities for recreational activities.” Summed up Mr. Stava.
QuiKTripm Tulsa based come into the project with a pledge to sponsor the completion of the Great Lawn of the ‘A Gathering Place for Tulsa’ .
Announcing their $12.5 million participation, Chet Cadieux CEO of QuikTrip QuikTrip’s participation stated that Tulsa has always been a very proud and giving community, and we are convinced that our partnership with the George Kaiser Foundation and the other great Tulsa businesses and foundations will enhance the quality of life for our citizens.
QuikTrip’s sponsorship agreements includes naming rights to the Great Lawn, Lakeview Lawn as well as the proposed Lakeview Passageway over the north land bridge.
The Great Lawn will sit at the very center of the new park connected by a land bridge to Lakeview Lawn making for a very long stretch of continuous landscape space, which is expected to make up the focal point of the new park as well as providing a link up between the city center and the riverfront system.
The Lakeview Lawn to be extended into the Arkansas River is intended to open up a generous landscape space creating a gently sloped lawn that makes the water’s edge accessible.
“Tulsa has always been a very proud and giving community, and we are convinced that our partnership with the George Kaiser Foundation and the other great Tulsa businesses and foundations will enhance the quality of life for our citizens, ” Mr. Cadieux went on to add.
QuikTrip operate a total of 642 stores, situated throughout the mid west of the United States.
George Kaiser was born and raised in Tulsa Oklahoma, After graduating with a B.A. from Harvard College in 1964 and an MBA from the Harvard Business School two years later, Kaiser joined Kaiser-Francis Oil , the company owned by his family, going on take control of the running of the company just three years later, when aged just 27.
In 1990, Kaiser acquired the Bank of Oklahoma, from the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation.
George Kaiser is particularly well known for his philanthropy, through the George Kaiser Family Foundation. Among the prominent causes he is involved in supporting the Jewish community in Oklahoma, which currently numbers around 5, 000 people.
The Kaiser Family Foundation remains the largest contributor to the Tulsa Community Foundation, which Kaiser established more than fifteen years ago, and has grown to become the largest community foundation in the United States, with an estimated four billion dollars in assets.
George Kaiser figures high on the list of the top 50 American philanthropists, as well as being among those who have made a commitment to the Giving Pledge, in which he undertakes to give away half of his wealth for charitable purposes