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Four teams of architectural firms were notified Aug. 8 that they will be presenting MAPS 3 convention center concepts on Sept. 21 before the Consultant Review Committee.
Fourteen proposals were under consideration.
The selection was just one piece of the ongoing process to construct a convention center downtown. Oklahoma City voters passed MAPS 3 in 2009. It included $280 million for the convention center to replace the aging Cox Convention Center.
Modifications to that amount were made when it was determined that $30 million of that total was intended to pay for moving an OG&E substation on the proposed sight just south of the central business district. The convention center subcommittee ultimately decided the convention center would not be on that sight, and instead would be just west of Chesapeake Energy Arena. At that point, the budget was shaved to just more than $252 million, with $30 million in an infrastructure contingency fund.
In August 2011, members of the Oklahoma City Council approved that option in a 5-4 vote. Ward 4 Councilman Pete White added the amendment that the $30 million be placed in the contingency and earmarked for infrastructure at the convention center.
The city’s MAPS 3 website shows that based on the current budget, the center will have about 470,000 square feet, with 235,000 square feet as sellable space for events. The goal is to get Oklahoma City from a Tier 3 city to a Tier 2 city in terms of convention center space.