The Edmond Sun

October 30, 2013

Edmond firm breaks ground at Gold Dome

Mark Schlachtenhaufen
The Edmond Sun

OKLA. CITY — This time next year Oklahoma City’s rustic Gold Dome will be returned to its original splendor — with some spectacular enhancements.

Wednesday afternoon, Edmond-based TEEMCO rolled out the red carpet as it celebrated ground-breaking for its new headquarters in the much-beloved dome, located at the N.W. 23rd Street-N. Classen intersection near the Paseo Arts District.

During the event, TEEMCO President and CEO Greg Lorson, of Edmond, said the building represents the company’s objective to protect the environment. Beyond its aesthetics and history, the structure’s form and materials — concrete, wood, stone and metal — represent the intersection of natural and manmade elements.

TEEMCO plans to add interior geological, water and technological elements that are both functional and artistic, Lorson said.

“For us, the entire building, including our presence in the building as an environmental engineering firm, will become a statement of how man can positively impact his environment,” he said.

Lorson said the project will cost several million dollars and it will be occupied by 65 employees early next year. The grand re-opening is scheduled for early March 2014.

Longtime dome supporter Oklahoma City City Councilwoman Meg Salyer, Uptown 23rd Merchants Association President Kurt Shewmaker and Greater Oklahoma City Chamber President and CEO Roy Williams welcomed TEEMCO to the area during their remarks.

The Gold Dome, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, contains 625 gold anodized aluminum panels ranging in size from 7.5 to 11.5 feet long, weighing 60-70 pounds and spanning a diameter of 145 feet.

The interior covers about 27,000 square feet, the highlight of which is the stunning interior gold dome spanning the space. A long glass wall will be turned into a giant see-through interactive computer screen.

Built in 1958, the building’s original architects (Bailey, Bozalis, Dickinson and Roloff) utilized Buckminster Fuller’s geodesic dome design. It was the third geodesic dome building ever built in the world.

Today, TEEMCO has enlisted the expertise of historic preservation architect Mike Kertok. Kertok’s significant historic preservation projects include the Phillips 66 Station on historic Route 66 in Tulsa, the Overholser Mansion in Oklahoma City and the Round Barn in Arcadia. He has also worked on the Gold Dome during previous renovations.

On June 21, TEEMCO announced it would be renovating the structure and moving its corporate headquarters to the site.