5 US Presidents gather in Dallas to dedicate the George W. Bush Presidential Center
As dedication ceremonies go, one held yesterday in Dallas, Texas to dedicate the George W. Bush Presidential Library was attended by a roster of dignitaries from around the world including U. S. Presidents Jimmy Carter, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, Barak Obama and George W. Bush. Also in attendance were former British Prime Minister Tony Blair and former Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.
Located on the campus of the Southern Methodist University( SMU) - First Lady Laura Bush’s alma mater - The George W. Bush Presidential Center houses the Presidential Library and Museum and a policy institute in a single environmentally sustainable building designed to LEED Platinum standards.
Designed by New York architect Robert A. M. Stern the 226,560 sq ft complex is a low slung classically disposed building with spaces organized around a series of courtyards and lobbies. Built of brick and Texas Cordova Cream limestone the structure is designed to compliment SMU’s campus.
Mark Langdale, the Center’s president calls the museum ‘a personal scrapbook’ of the 43rd president and his wife. As such it includes a full scale replica of the Oval Office and a Texas rose garden modeled on the Rose Garden at the White House. Also included among the more than 40,000 artifacts housed at the center is a twisted steel beam from the World Trade Center and a megaphone from which President Bush gave one of his most inspiring speeches at Ground Zero shortly after the twin towers fell.
The estimated $250m facility, which officially opens on 1 May, sits in a 14-acre native Texas landscape designed by Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates.