Self+Tucker Architects

T. O. Fuller Interpretive Center

The site of the new interpretive center which is within T.O. Fuller State Park is located in the North quadrant of the Levi/West Whitehaven Neighborhood of Memphis, TN. T.O. Fuller State Park was the frst state park open for African Americans east of the Mississippi River. A Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) camp in the area initiated construction of the park facilities in 1938. It was designated Shelby County Negro State Park in 1938 and was later changed to T.O. Fuller State Park in 1942 in honor of Dr. Thomas O. Fuller, a prominent African-American educator, pastor, politician, civic leader and author, who spent his life empowering and educating African Americans. The project site is located atop a scenic hill adjacent to the original golf course to the East and an empty feld leading to the picnic areas to the West. The golf course has since been converted into a nature reserve. The existing Club House located on the site was converted into an event space catering to family reunions, receptions, and meetings. The project scope included minor renovation of the existing club house, demolition of the existing feld equipment storage building, the un-used storage shed, the fuel tanks and the Golf Cart storage building. The demolition of these building cleared the site for the construction of a new Interpretive Center. The center serves as an indoor and outdoor educational classroom in the Memphis/Shelby county area. Built to be as environmentally friendly and energy conserving as possible, the center is ideal for demonstrating energy effciency techniques such as photovoltaic cells and geothermal heating and air conditioning. The center houses fight cages, outdoor classroom, conference room, a gift shop and information about the native wildlife of West Tennessee.