The new Peace Pavilion for the Oak Ridge International Friendship Bell will be dedicated in a ceremony at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, September 20, at the bell’s new site in A.K. Bissell Park. The bell’s sound will resonate for the first time from its new location that evening, from a pavilion designed to project harmony, stability, innovation, and peace, a press release said.
“We would not be where we are today without the passion of Shigeko Uppuluri and her son, Ram Uppuluri, who initiated the project by connecting us with a visionary architect, Ziad Demian, who embraced not only the challenge of an innovative design but an entire city,” said Alan Tatum, who co-chaired the International Friendship Bell Citizens Advisory Committee with Pat Postma.
In the press release, Postma said that the architect’s first elegant and contemporary designs introduced a different way of thinking about what was possible for the new bell housing. That, and the decision to move the bell to a new location will make it more visible and accessible to the community, with added benefits of gardens and gathering spaces on benches around the bell, she said.
“This accomplishment and the fundraising it required was not just ambitious,” Postma said. “It was probably audacious, but Oak Ridge has a way of stepping up. Oak Ridgers are willing to support exceptional projects that speak for who we are as a city.” [Read more…]