The Norman Transcript
By Carol Cole
Transcript Staff Writer

"Zip code 73170 is the highest income per capita zip code in the Oklahoma City metro, higher than Nichols Hills and Gaillardia"

Moore has outstripped Norman in many of the key demographics retailers want when they consider where to locate, members of the Norman Citizens Tax Increment Finance Committee heard last week.

Committee co-chairman Marc Nuttle requested the demographic analysis from Eric Fleske, vicepresident and a certified commercial investment member at Equity Realty of Norman. Fleske quoted numbers from a 2004 database used by commercial real estate industry, found on STDBOnline.com, which factors U.S. Census and other data.

"Moore is not just Moore. It is south Oklahoma City and even many parts north Norman. The density of development that's occurring up north is a lot higher than it is here," Fleske said.

Fleske talked about demographics within certain radius' and drive time to Norman's Ed Noble Parkway, north of Main Street on Interstate 35, and development popping up at South 19th and I-35 in Moore.

Within a 5-mile radius, total households near Ed Noble Parkway are 39,289 with a median household income of $44,074. The same distance from the Moore development features 34,882 total households and an average of $52,441 in
median household income.


Total households and median household income within 10-miles of Ed Noble Parkway number 67,030 and $43,970 respectively. Go to the Moore development and 10 miles out, households total 141,312 with median income of $37,039. And the density grow for Moore with the radius. Jump to a 15-mile radius and households grow to 131,867 for Ed Noble Parkway and 250,965 for South 19th and I-35.
 
"What's a challenge is if you put a 5-mile radius down in Norman, you almost cover Norman," Fleske said.


A 5-mile radius for South 19th and I-35 in Moore taps some of the higher-income areas of Norman, south Oklahoma City and some of Del City. And Fleske pointed at that Moore's zip code 73170 off SH 37 is the highest income per capita zip code in the Oklahoma City metro, higher than Nichols Hills and Gaillardia.

In Oklahoma City, the two major retail areas have included the Quail Springs area in northwest Oklahoma City and I-240 corridor in south Oklahoma City. Part of the irony of Moore's demographics is that the city gets to include much of Norman's demos.

"Norman is included in Moore's demographics when they are out doing recruiting, because of the radiuses," Fleske said. "So it's actually counting the dollars that are being spent where we're sitting right now."

Another problem is that about 40,000 Norman residents go to Oklahoma County to work,passing Moore developments on their commute home.

Skyrocketing gas prices have affected retailers in various ways, with a recent Wall Street Journal report indicated sales were down at Wal-Mart stores and up at J.C. Penney. Committee member Chuck Thompson said people in the 73170 zip code are not as affected by gas prices.

"That [Moore] development in its current format does not deliver the shopping experience that 73170 is looking for. If you look at what this developer or vision committee is hoping to see - the kind of shopping experience that economic strata is looking for does not exist today," Thompson said.