Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Elliott Outlines Design Philosophy for Chamber Offices

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Elliott Outlines Design Philosophy for Chamber Offices

Article excerpt

The invisible intersection of the past and the future will be a theme carried out on each of the five floors of the building that is soon to be the new home of the Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce offices.

Mrs. C. Harold Brand and the C. Harold Brand and Constance Brand Foundation donated $525,000 to the chamber for the purchase of the building at 123 Park Ave. The donation was in honor of the late C. Harold Brand.

Gerald Gamble made the announcement at the chamber's annual banquet Jan. 7.

The chamber hired Rand Elliott of Elliott Associates Architects in Oklahoma City to design the offices to suit the chamber.

During the Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce's quarterly Chairman's Club Breakfast Thursday, Elliott described his train of thought in arriving at conceptual sketches and perspectives for the former Park Avenue Bank building.

"When you intersect the past and the future you have a momentary present," Elliott said. "It's real important where we've been and where we're going. Philosophically, we are trying to illustrate our past and where we are going in the future.

"Our intention is to use these words and thoughts throughout the chamber office," he said.

Elliott listed 10 words, five describing history and five illustrating the future. As those words correspond, one from the past and one from the present, they will be used in the theme for each of the five levels of the building.

"Each floor will have a little bit of the past, present and future. On every floor there will be a graph (theme) similar to the past-future graph," Elliott said. "Roots" from the category of historical words and "dreams" from the list of words for the future will be the focus on the first level. A "greeter" who will welcome visitors to the chamber's offices will be on that level. The chamber is also contemplating putting in a "store" area where brochures and other paraphernalia promoting Oklahoma City would be located. Another consideration is a "Top 10" gallery where 10 businesses would be featured every two months or each quarter, he said.

Plans are to add a second elevator to the building.

A consideration for all floors is a poster about a current event going on in the city.

The chamber is also asking for donations to fund the remodeling project, and depending on the amount of the gift, names of donors would be inscribed on limestone blocks on three levels of the chamber offices. In the basement, "bygone" for the past and "tomorrow" for future will be the focus. Planned on the lower level are the OKC Room, an activity or screen room, storage, break room, mail room and maintenance areas. The ceiling will probably be exposed to give the area more volume, Elliott said. "Backbone" from the history category and "vision" from the future category are incorporated in the theme planned for the second floor. A board or conference room, similar to the chamber's current board room, and a reception area are to be on the second level of the building. The third level will feature "pride" from the past and "promise" for the future. That level will have a small conference room and general offices around the perimeter. The fourth level will be the "crescendo." "Earth" representing the past and "sky" representing the future will be the theme. The office of the president and other administrative offices are planned on that top level. A skylight in the roof with a map of Oklahoma City in the floor directly below are planned, Elliott said.

"The skylight in the roof _ we are using that to be the crescendo of the project," he said.

These ideas are all part of the concept of the design, Elliott said. There are three topics that define the new chamber offices: project concept, which is the heart and driving force, plans and conceptual sketches.

"Concept is the soul _ kind of the central point. …

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