Memorial services held for Vermillion City Hall architect By David Lias
Plain Talk An individual who is largely responsible combining beauty and function in the design of Vermillionâ�?�?s new city hall sadly wonâ�?�?t be present for the structureâ�?�?s dedication next year. The buildingâ�?�?s architect, Owen M. Mamura, 61, of Sioux City, IA, died Friday, Nov. 7, in Rochester, MN. A memory and sharing service was held Nov. 14 in the Monterey Room at the Marina Inn Conference Center in Sioux City. Arrangements were under the direction of Morningside Chapel, Christy-Smith Funeral Home. Condolences may be sent online to www.christysmith.com. Owen was born in Lihue, Kauai, HI on June 5, 1947, the son of Misuku and Fujiko (Arinaga) Mamura. He was raised in Hawaii and graduated from high school in Lihue. He attended Kansas State University and graduated with a bachelorâ�?�?s degree in architecture. In 1971, he joined the U.S. Army and served as a combat engineer platoon leader for the Army Corps of Engineers. In 1974, he came to Sioux City and worked as a principal and project architect for the Duffy, Ruble, Mamura and Brygger, P.C. from 1974 to present. The firm is now Cannon, Moss, Brygger and Associates. On Aug. 3, 1975, he married Judy Dandurand in Sioux City. He was a member of the American Institute of Architects (A.I.A.) and the International Facility, Management Association (I.F.M.A.). He was very active with the Boy Scouts of America. He earned his Eagle Scout rank and distinction from the Kauai, Hawaii district of the Aloha Council, Boy Scouts of America. He later served as an assistant Scout Master and Merit Badge Counselor for the Sioux City Boy Scout Troop 225. He served several years as the Council Commissioner (the second highest volunteer position) for the Prairie Gold Area Council, now part of the Mid-America Council of the Boy Scouts of America. Thanks to the efficient work of Mamura and the staff of Cannon, Moss, Brygger and Associates, the Vermillion City Council was able to add extra design elements to the new city hall building. â�?�?Thereâ�?�?s been talk for a long time about a terrazzo floor in the lobby of the new building,â�? Prescott said in a news story earlier this year. â�?�?Since the contractorâ�?�?s bid was under what was projected, we were able to add the floor to the contract. Weâ�?�?ll also have some additional vinyl wall covering in the building. Both of those features were things that could have been left out of the project if necessary.â�? The estimated date for completion of the project is March 2009. The new building site leaves room for future expansion and parking areas on both sides. It will also offer numerous amenities not possible in the old structure. â�?�?The old building was refitted to be a city hall,â�? Prescott said. â�?�?The new one is designed to be a city hall. It will provide American Disabilities Act access for the public and will have an elevator that accesses all three floors. We will have some space that we can offer the community for meetings. Itâ�?�?s possible that USD will use some of the space for government classes that they would like to hold in a government facility. Thatâ�?�?s been discussed.â�? The new building will also meet fire codes that were not possible to upgrade in the old structure. While the new facility is designed to provide for all the needs of modern day government offices, Prescott noted the building design incorporates a number of historic architectural characteristics that will cause the building to blend with other historic structures downtown. Palladian or arched windows and granite marble trim on the buildingâ�?�?s exterior are two of the design elements intended to preserve Vermillionâ�?�?s historic flavor. â�?�?We believe the new building will enhance the communityâ�?�?s overall image in regard to how we serve people and provide services,â�? Prescott said.