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No Man’s Land

Cars drive in both directions on SH-4 Wednesday in the area that is currently up for de-annexation from Oklahoma City to Mustang.

Cars drive in both directions on SH-4 Wednesday in the area that is currently up for de-annexation from Oklahoma City to Mustang. (Photographer/Victoria Middleton)

Mustang official keeping eye on OKC proceedings

The City of Mustang’s familiar rectangle size of the city limits could be changing shape if the de-annexing of 1,000+ acres from Oklahoma City to the city goes through.

This will mean new maps and the city losing its original size from when it was first incorporated in 1969, Community Development Director Melissa Helsel said.

On Sept. 8, Oklahoma City’s planning commission recommended approval of the de-annexation and the matter now goes to the city council for final approval.
The council met Tuesday but the de-annexation was not on the agenda. An OKC spokesperson said she was unaware if the matter would be on the next scheduled meeting set for Sept. 27.

The details
The land in question is located just south of Mustang, between Mustang and Sara Roads, south of SW 89th Street with no one currently residing on it and it is being used primarily for agriculture and oil/gas operations.

Running through the land is State Highway 4 on its way from Mustang to Tuttle, and the James and Margaret Little Trust are the primary property owners. Other individual owners include: Lance and Teresa Lamkin, Dist. 2 County Commissioner David Anderson and wife, Deborah, and their son, Mark and wife Christine Anderson, and Steven and Karen Wilson.

In April 2015, the applicants petitioned OKC for the de-annexation in order to build new homes on large lots but it was denied by the city. Later that fall, the petition was revised for a mixed-used planning community to include homes, retail and recreational open space, a city staff report states.

Commissioner Anderson reported Robert Crout, president of Crout Companies in Mustang, is working with the majority landowner involved on the project.

An ad-hoc committee took a closer look and recommended the amended petition move on. The most recent step, before the Sept. 8 vote, was a staff evaluation of the land that looked at city service efficiency in infrastructure, police and fire services. This revealed an average 11.5-minute response time for fire and 15 minutes for police – both of which surpass OKC’s preferred target times, the state report states.

In addition, OKC’s nearest water main is approximately 2.1 miles east and the nearest sewer main is approximately 3 miles northeast. The land is also located in OKC’s “hardest to serve” area for water and sewer services, staff identified in their report.

Mustang council members approved a resolution supporting the applicants request for the de-annexing in May 2015. Helsel said this was a necessary step for the applicants in their request to Oklahoma City.

“I don’t think they do this very often,” she said, referring to Oklahoma City de-annexing any of its 620.34 square miles in land.

Helsel said if the land owners were to wait on Oklahoma City to bring infrastructure to the property, “it would take a long time for them to wait on Oklahoma City to get there.”

She said normally new commercial development occurs where infrastructure is already located or at least nearby. “You cannot do mixed use development without infrastructure.

Helsel said she understands if Oklahoma City is reluctant to approve the de-annexation request because of the revenue potential that could be produced from the area. She added that if OKC approves the de-annexing, “This sets a huge precedence that hasn’t been set before for other land owners to request de-annexation.”

The Mustang city official said she will continue to keep tabs on the situation and see how OKC proceeds.

“So far, the City of Mustang’s stance on this, we have approved a resolution of support. That’s the only step taken; that’s not equivalent to the city saying we want to annex you.”

Another related story: OKC hesitant to let land go due to revenue potential

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