Built in 1935 on the Mother Road of America, the Market C building was one of the original iconic Phillips 66 service stations, witnessing the rise, fall and rebirth of one of Oklahoma City's busiest commercial districts. The renovation of this historic structure into an upscale take-out deli and catering company marks a milestone in the resurgence of urban revitalization in the city.
The intent of the overall design approach was to blend the often disparate aesthetics of the historic building's exterior with a freshness created through modern design influences by refinishing the interior into clean, open and airy spaces that serve as a showcase for the business and its products. Low ceilings were removed to open into a loft-like space emphasizing the building’s volume from within. Simple but dramatic lighting was incorporated for both ambient- and task-oriented purposes.
The exterior of the building was stripped and cleaned of years of grime accumulated while the building served as various auto repair shops. Colors that spoke to the color schemes of the original service stations and period lighting fixtures were added to enhance the historic feel of the building. New glass panel overhead doors combined to create an open storefront on the street/entry side and to provide access to and from the catering kitchen in the rear of the building. A small copper-roofed bay window was restored near the entry door and a simple, lighted “welcome” sign was fabricated and installed where the original Phillips 66 logo light fixture once shone.
Design elements taken from iconic service stations were created for the building’s signs and lighting. The “C” sign serves as a bold visual marker with distinctly different personalities both day and night. During daylight hours, the “C” with the circle is a clearly visible element among competing signs and graphics along the street while at night the bright neon “C” stands out with its simple statement.
Fabricated using sections of the original light poles, the lanterns installed over the original pump island still bear the cracked rusted paint layers from seven decades. The fixtures allude to the glass-topped gas pumps of times past and incorporate neon “filaments” reminiscent of incandescent bulbs.