Rainbow Plaza E.Dent Lackey Plaza

Rainbow   Center  Plaza Niagara  Falls  USA  1972

In  the downtown  commercial  business District of Oklahoma City  a vast parking lot  is being replaced with a  green Park with  natural amenities and  urban activities in within its boundaries.
An artificial lake has been conceived and  constructed . A  glass structure with  indoor gardens and an interior pedestrian bridge look over the  surface of the artificial lake in the silence of its reflecting waters.
Plazas , landscaped walking  paths  and a pedestrian bridge  cross the green grounds  leading to a series of  buildings such as a Museum, an underwater Aquarium, Restaurants  and outdoor open spaces for   all kinds of  seasonal activities.

Earth  excavations  and  man-made  land- fills give tri-dimensional form to the Park and allow pedestrians to  a sensorial exploration of  these new grounds .
A  landscaped ravine full of  trees and vegetation  frames at all levels the lake  as part of a system of  public playgrounds.
This project was designed in collaboration with the N.Y.C firm  of Conklin/ Rossant .
The urban Park of Myriad Gardens won the  1973 Progressive Architecture Award for the best  project  of the year.

Progressive Architecture January 1973 
" Myriad Gardens will transform a large track of underused land in downtown  Oklahoma City into an environment where urbanities can enjoy  the benefits of the natural world.’  In a unique intentional and planned manner, myriad Gardens will consolidate a series of parks  and gardens, along with facilities  for shopping , civic facilities, exhibitions, commerce and entertainment to become  the new focus  for Downtown Oklahoma City.
It will bring together separated  pieces and functions of downtown  to define a new relationship between urban man and the natural world where  the environment will be exclusively oriented to the pedestrian"
On 11,3 acres of underused  land on the edge of the central business district  of Oklahoma City , adjacent to the new Mummers Theater , the gardens will draw on the convention center now nearing completion , and on proposed   surrounding facilities such as a hotel retail complex , a downtown retail  galleria, a transportation center  and a long term parking structure.  Eventually the gardens will expand to 33 acres.
A 25 ft. deep underground strata of clear stream water will be tapped and  revealed to create a canyon where , in four levels along its walls , all  functions will have their access and frontage. As the center and symbol for  the new urban ecology , the glass enclosed Botanical Garden  spans the  canyon walls over a newly created  lake to provide a daily travel link  between peripheral parking and the downtown core.
The activities in Myriad Gardens will be generated by clusters of cultural, educational, commercial  facilities tucked within a new raised ground level of excavated soil fronting on the canyon , away from the winds and noises of  the streets. An  arts and science center with planetarium will face the new downtown library across the ravine, and exhibit facilities and a visitor center  will be at the ravine’s edge . Theaters , restaurants , clubs, shops and art  galleries will surround the complex.

Niagara Falls Niagara NY  USA
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