Robert Alan Bowlby
5613 N. May, OKC
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Bob Bowlby was a student of Bruce Goff’s at OU, and this remarkable building is his only known OKC design. He worked closely with Goff and another Goff protege, Herb Greene, on many projects, including Greene’s Cunningham House in Quail Creek. He also taught and became quite an excellent architectural photographer a la Julius Shulman in the 1960’s.
Originally, the bank was to be surrounded by an office tower, which was never built:
As for the bank, it has been altered. In the 1980s, the glass wall around the perimeter of the building was removed to increase the office space, and a brick surround took its place. With the addition, the building has certainly lost its lighter-than-air feeling, but, luckily, the iconic arches and roofline remain, and the old Founders Bank still looks incredibly modern today.
In August 2017, Bank of America moved out of the building and it and the surrounding parking lot and undeveloped area were listed for $3 million in October 2017. This one-of-a-kind structure now sits vacant and quietly awaiting its fate.
Read more about this iconic building and Bob Bowlby here. Read more about the Founders District here. Also, the bank was featured in the third quarter, 1965 issue of Modern Steel Construction.
UPDATE 19/8/2018: The Founders National Bank is history.