Lobby Design for Museum of the Great Plains

Lawton, Oklahoma

The Museum of the Great Plains underwent a major renovation of both the main entry lobby and the exhibit space.  SLA Architects was contracted to redesign the 2800sf lobby area to include a museum store, benefactor displays, and queue space for visiting guests. The lobby acts as a transition through the facility as the guests enter the main entry and venture into the exhibit space.

The museum provides a “hands-on” environment to its visitors and the lobby renovation compliments this experience with its use of natural materials and linear forms.  Wood finishes on the ceilings and in the details of the space along with some industrial touches harken the melding of past and present.  Natural light is infused throughout allowing the lobby to grow beyond its footprint.

In the center of it all is the museum store, doubling as a control point for both exhibit and administrative access.  The store acts as the hub of the lobby.  Its features are demure, allowing the museum wares and displays to provide the visual enticement as visitors browse at their convenience.

Another key feature of the lobby renovation is the eye-catching attraction that is the donor wall.  Custom engraved brass buffaloes designate benefactors and their contributions.  Buffaloes are mounted on a rolling plains backdrop handcrafted from wood and leather which aesthetically ties into the overall design and influence of the region.

The new lobby renovation provides the needed space and function to transition from entry to exhibit while maintaining a sense of place for itself.