Story provided by City of Stillwater, OK
KICKER® owner Steve Irby, Jim Beckstrom and City of Stillwater Administration announce that development of Block 34 is now fully funded and designs are complete, with bid process to begin in September. The bid for construction states a 12-month timeline for completion.
There are multiple contributors for the outdoor public event and gathering space to ensure the community’s vision becomes reality. The most recent contribution from Kicker is an additional $3 million (total project contribution approximately $8 million) to seal the deal for an amphitheater and amenities.
“When you look around the country at community gathering space projects like Block 34, most are being made possible due to local individuals and corporate donations. That’s why we are so blessed by the gifts from Kicker and Simmons Bank,” interim City Manager Brady Moore said. “Stillwater will now have an incredible economic development asset in a modern park where people can gather to socialize and experience live music, education and cultural events.”
The concept for the block has been vetted for several years to create a recreational space for the community that benefits all residents and organizations throughout the seasons. The location and position of the amphitheater was strategically planned for optimal viewing with lighting, time of day and seasonal changes. The covered stage will be suitable for hosting outdoor plays, concerts, movies, cultural and educational events.
“It’s invaluable to invest into our community – ensuring Stillwater becomes an even better place to live, work, and enjoy. We are enhancing quality of life, providing a place for people to come together, and bring more life and energy to our downtown,” said Steve Irby, Founder and President of Kicker.
Architectural renderings for the park and amphitheater provide a visual of the multi-use, public space that includes the outdoor performance stage, multi-purpose pavilion, restrooms, storage, water fountain, art features, bermed lawn and seating, stone benches, area for food trucks and other vendors, and amenities.
“We are grateful for Kicker and the Irby family, Simmons Bank and other funding contributors as well as the Block 34 design team and City staff who have collectively gotten us where we are today,” said Jim Beckstrom, Chair of the Stillwater Community Center Foundation and Chair of the Block 34 Architecture and Development Committee. “It takes one to plant the seed of a concept, a team to water it, and the entire community can benefit from the fruit. That is where we are with Block 34 and many generations to come will benefit.”
A portion of the donations will go toward programming and maintenance expenses over the next 10 years. Additionally, the City of Stillwater will address street and infrastructure concerns around the block to repair drainage problems, parking, and aged roadways.
For more information about the history and development of the Block 34 area, go online to: stillwaterok.gov/block34.