Tuesday, May 3, 2016
The Oklahoma City Council voted Tuesday to approve the conceptual design for the MAPS 3 Downtown Convention Center, moving forward with a vision to create OKC’s “living room” on the edge of the MAPS 3 Downtown Public Park.
The conceptual design, created by consultants at Populous, calls for a multi-level building with a ballroom on the top floor featuring expansive views of the park and OKC’s urban core, leading designers to liken it to the community’s living room. The center will be on the park’s east edge, a block south of Chesapeake Energy Arena.
“The MAPS 3 Convention Center will have a distinct civic presence in Oklahoma City,” said Mayor Mick Cornett. “Not only will it draw visitors from around the world, but it will host events for our own community and be a landmark downtown for decades.”
The design allows for the possibility of future expansion.
The conceptual design includes exhibit hall spaces designed to be flexible enough to host a variety of events and exhibits. The 30,000-square-foot ballroom space can also be adapted to suit different needs.
The building will also make use of design elements and construction materials to maximize energy efficiency and resilience against weather conditions, which is especially important for a west-facing building in Oklahoma City’s unpredictable climate.
The next step in the convention center project is to prepare and finalize design plans, which will use the conceptual design approved Tuesday to produce specifications for construction. Construction is scheduled to begin next year.
About MAPS 3
MAPS 3 is a $777 million, debt-free capital improvement program to improve the quality of life in Oklahoma City. It is funded by a 1-cent tax initiative that began in April 2010 and ends in December 2017. MAPS 3 funds eight projects: Downtown Convention Center, Downtown Public Park, Modern Streetcar/Transit, Oklahoma River Improvements, Oklahoma State Fairgrounds Improvements, Senior Health and Wellness Centers, Trails and Sidewalks.