The Oklahoma City Convention Center was named by ULI Oklahoma as its 2022 Outstanding Public Initiative.
The mission of ULI, which stands for Urban Land Institute, is to shape the future of “built environments” to have a transformative impact on communities around the world. The convention center, a MAPS 3 project of Oklahoma City and city ratepayers, was honored in the recent eighth annual ULI Oklahoma Impact Awards.
As the largest single project in Oklahoma City’s history, the $293 million MAPS 3 Convention Center was completed in December 2020 on schedule, on budget and debt-free, noted organization in a press release. More than twice the size of the aging Cox Convention Center, the Oklahoma City Convention Center has dramatically increased the city’s capacity to host meetings and conventions.
MAPS Program Director David Todd described the MAPS 3 Convention Center, located east of Scissortail Park along Robinson Avenue between SW Fourth and SW Seventh Streets, as both historic and transformative. .
“During construction, four other massive projects were built adjacent to the site, including the OKC Streetcar, Scissortail Park, Omni Hotel and Oklahoma City Boulevard,” he noted. “As a result, we have transformed our downtown and created a gathering place that residents and visitors will enjoy for generations.
The 500,000 square foot interior of the convention center includes a 200,730 square foot exhibit hall on the first floor, which is divisible into four halls. Approximately 45,000 square feet of highly flexible meeting space is available on all levels of the building. Different rooms can be configured up to 27 different ways.
Additionally, a 30,000 square foot ballroom features a large balcony overlooking Scissortail Park. A 9,700 square foot “Junior Ballroom” is located on the third floor.
Kirk Mammen, vice president of Flintco, said the company was fortunate to have been involved in building the center.
“The Oklahoma City Convention Center is one of those career projects that is transforming the cityscape and bringing tremendous value to the Oklahoma City community,” he said.
In its release, ULI Oklahoma also made mention of a $1.5 million public art installation, “Virtual Sky,” identified with the convention center. The artwork features small LED lights that can be programmed for specific patterns or to reflect a changing sky.
Members of the Convention Center team included the City of Oklahoma City, Populous, Flintco, ADG and GSB, the organization said.
“ULI Oklahoma’s Impact Awards recognize projects that exemplify best practices in responsible land use and creating and sustaining thriving communities,” the statement said. “The finalists represent projects and initiatives that have been determined to best promote the creation of resilient communities, smart intensification and urbanization, and exceptional design and construction quality. A diverse panel of judges with experience in landscaping and landscaping scored the finalists based on the project’s success in contributing to walking, creating or strengthening a sense of place, and additional measures, including criteria appropriate to specific categories, such as excellence in preservation, degree of difficulty and significant impact on the community.