Tuesday, March 12, 2024

McBride bill would honor OK National Guard with Capitol Arch

McBride Bill Would Honor OK National Guard with Capitol Arch

OKLAHOMA CITY (March 7th) - Rep. Mark McBride, R-Moore, on Wednesday passed a bill in the Oklahoma House of Representatives that would fund the building of an arch at the Oklahoma Capitol to serve as an honorary symbol of the services performed by the Oklahoma National Guard.

McBride said the arch was part of early drawings of architect Solomon Layton before the Capitol was built in 1917. It was originally designed to stretch across Lincoln Boulevard much like the Arc de Triomphe in Paris. It was one of the structures, like the dome, however, that was laid aside because of lack of funding at the time.  

"I believe this arch is something that will add tremendously to the aesthetics of the Capitol complex," McBride said. "But I also wanted to make sure that it paid tribute to something significant to our state, and I think the legacy of the Oklahoma National Guard and their service and protection of our citizens is deserving of this honor."

The 30-foot tall and 60-foot long scale model arch would be constructed south of the visitor's parking lot on the south of the Capitol. It would have a small amphitheater that could seat about 100 people, and the grassy area that now exists would be named Veterans Park.

McBride said the project has been in the works since about 2014 before restoration of the Capitol began. He said he wanted to get the $250 million restoration project off the books on time and under budget before he ran this bill asking for funding for the arch. The estimated cost of the arch is $4.3 million, which would come from the Legacy Capital Financing Fund to the Oklahoma Capitol Improvement Authority.

HB4012 passed the House on a vote of 88-6. It moves to the Senate where it is authored by Sen. Brenda Stanley, R-Midwest City.

Mark McBride serves District 53 in the Oklahoma House of Representatives. His district includes part of Cleveland County. Baker serves House District 60, which includes part of Canadian County. 


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