When the Bricktown Police Substation opened in 2007, the blank walls marked where designers once envisioned a tribute to the police department's colorful history.
Cost overruns, however, delayed the project.
Over the next few years, Maj. Ed Hill and retired police detective and author Ron Owens worked with retirees to make sure the exhibit became a reality. They created a narrative on the force's history and assembled photos and items for display.
Assisted by the graphic artists and design team at Midwest Trophy, which donated time and effort to the cause, the exhibit is now open and recently celebrated a quiet opening with retirees.
To help the project proceed, the company created the cases and display panels.
The substation is an ideal setting for the exhibit. The worn-out former Rock Island freight depot at 219 E Main was renovated and expanded as part of a design created by The Small Group. While the exterior retained the appearance of train depot, the interior was designed to resemble a 1930s-era police station.
The architectural detail includes old-style police light globes at the entrance, vintage engraved tin ceiling tiles, a wood floor, and a bench that dates to when the city courtroom was in the Main Street Arcade Building at 629 W Main.