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Architectural Tour includes variety of properties in Oklahoma City

Homes, offices and multiunit housing are featured in Saturday’s 13th annual Achitectural Tour in Oklahoma City.
by Richard Mize Modified: April 12, 2014 at 3:00 pm •  Published: April 12, 2014

New and shiny just didn’t suit Thomas Small at all.

Old and shined up? Old, historical and restored? Just the ticket — and it’s one of architect Small’s calling cards: historic preservation.

Small Architects’ own office building is a model for the firm’s work. The 108-year-old, two-story stone building in downtown Edmond — originally a jewelry store downstairs and funeral parlor up — is one of eight stops Saturday on the 13th-annual Architecture Tour organized by the American Institute of Architects Central Oklahoma Chapter.

The self-guided tour is from noon to 5 p.m. Tickets for the entire tour are $15 at any stop.

Small bought the building at 108 S Broadway Ave., just off the northeast corner of Broadway and Second Street, in 2011. By 2013, it was completely rehabilitated inside and out. An architectural studio for professional staff is upstairs. Reception, administrative offices and a 14-seat conference room occupy the ground floor.

The project “honors the past by preserving traditional materials throughout the building contrasted with new, modern features that allow the professional staff access to professional facilities, equipment and connectivity,” tour organizers said.

Small said a good chunk of his work is with historic properties.

“It’s an ideal fit for our firm because it’s a historical building. We recognized that opportunity and wanted to renovate it to suit our purposes for our staff and our equipment and everything that we do,” he said. “I’d say approximately 15 to 20 percent of our work is working for the Oklahoma Historical Society or private industry, looking at historic buildings, (working with) tax credit requirements and preservation standards. We help quite a few of our clients in this area.”

Architects look forward to the tour and the opportunity it gives the public to closely examine their work, he said.

Other stops are:

Walters Home — 6219 Riviera Drive, owned by former Gov. David and Rhonda Walters. The renovation architect for the project was James Loftis Architects. The 7,800-square-foot home, built in 1963, is a former home of deep gas pioneer Robert A. Hefner III.

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