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Downtown Oklahoma City's plan revisited

BY STEVE LACKMEYER Modified: May 2, 2010 at 5:19 pm •  Published: May 2, 2010

Welge referred Mosman to a books about the Pei Plan and downtown — "Vanished Splendor” and "OKC Second Time Around” — and it while reading "OKC Second Time Around” that Mosmon learned saw a photo of the Pei model.

Welge told Mosman the model was crated up and stored in the basement of the Main Street Parking Garage and hadn’t been on public display since it was exhibited at the Smithsonian in 1995.

Mosman assembled a team to reconstruct the model. The team included Butzer and his partner Jeremy Gardner, who designed a new base and framing for the model, and architectural model builder Dub Brunsteter, who cleaned the model and did minor repairs.

Oklahoma City Councilman Pete White and City Clerk Frances Kersey helped arrange a work space for the model and the display at the convention center to coincide with the upcoming National Main Streets Conference and U.S. Conference of Mayors.

Logistics, displays and other support for the display was provided by the Oklahoma Historical Society, Oklahoma City/County Historical Society, the City of Oklahoma City and RetroMetro OKC.

Mosman noted the project’s website was assembled by Justin Tyler Moore, who at 27 is one of the team’s younger members. The youngest project partner, however, is only 17. Bunee Tomlinson, a past winner at the DeadCENTER Film Festival, produced a film about the project that will be presented at the model’s unveiling on Monday.

The multimedia efforts, Mosman said, include the presentation of vintage images, maps, materials and films that she hopes will add to the conversation about the Pei Plan and its legacy.

"It’s an ongoing telling of the story,” Mosman said. "Everyone is stepping forward to tell their own experience, and it gives us another dimension to the story we’re trying to tell.”

Mosman cautions against anyone assuming the exhibit is intended to celebrate or condone the Pei Plan.

"It expresses a point in Oklahoma City history when there was a big transition,” Mosman said. "It promotes a community conversation and helps us tell a story of our history between generations. ... People who see it are curious. We see these images, and we want to know what happened.”

If you go
A free public unveiling of the Pei model will be held at 5:30 p.m. Monday in the northeast lobby of the Cox Convention Center with introductions by Mayor Mick Cornett and Dr. Bob Blackburn, director of the Oklahoma Historical Society. For more information about the Pei project visit


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