A small part of Oklahoma is making its mark across the U.S. in a first-class way.
The Oklahoma City Skydance Bridge is one of four bridges that will be on a U.S. Postal Service Presorted First-Class Mail stamp this year.
The others selected include the Bob Kerrey Pedestrian Bridge in Omaha, NE; the Arrigoni Bridge in Middletown, CT; and the Iowa-Illinois Memorial Bridge in Bettendorf, Iowa, and Moline, IL.
According to the U.S. Postal Service’s website, “the stamps feature existing photographs of four different bridges that range from modern to the historic, pedestrian to car-carrying, but all are important landmarks in their communities.”
Kristy Yager, the public information officer for the City of Oklahoma City, suspects the bridge was selected because of its iconic, soaring design.
“The sculpture is the most valuable and visible piece in the city’s growing art collection,” she says.
The pedestrian bridge is 380 feet long and 197 feet tall, stretching over Interstate 40 near Robinson Ave. in Oklahoma City. It connects the north and south halves of the 70-acre Scissortail Park – a sprawling outdoor green space completed with money from MAPS3, a debt-free public improvement program funded by a temporary penny sales tax.
The U.S. Postal Service art director, Ethel Kessler, designed all of the stamps in the bridges collection with existing photographs.
“These particular bridge images were selected primarily based on the dynamic lighting and perspective of the photograph,” says James McKean, senior public relations representative for the U.S. Postal Service. “At this small scale, the images needed to be immediately impactful and interesting. Secondarily, an effort was made to ensure there was some geographic diversity between the bridges and that there was also diversity in bridge type [and] structure.”
The Major Players
MKEC Engineering and S-X-L were responsible for the design and structural engineering of the bridge that opened in 2012.
S-X-L is a collaboration of architects, engineers, university professors and designers, including Laurent Massenat with Obelisk Engineering; Hans Butzer with Butzer Architects and Urbanism; Stan Carroll with Beyond Metal; Ken Fitzsimmons with TASK Design; Chris Ramseyer with Fears Lab at the University of Oklahoma; David Wanzer with Pivot Project Development; Bret Johnston; and Jeremy Gardner with Gardner Architects.
This bridge, already an iconic landmark for Oklahomans, will now continue to make an impression across the country via the stamp.
“Having a stamp that represents Oklahoma City’s landmark keeps us on the national stage and helps give our skyline a unique identity,” says Yager. “The bridge has become a popular backdrop for weddings, engagements and family photos and provides the perfect anchor for Scissortail Park. We are proud of Skydance Bridge and the fact it was designed locally.”
The stamps will be available for purchase by bulk mail users in coils of 3,000 and 10,000.