I believe that Andrew Probert’s original deck layout was too small to be really discernible, so here is a larger version to visualize how he envisioned the deck layout.
To put the “Observation Deck” into better perspective and scale, here is also his sketch to illustrate the basic idea. I think it doesn’t take a lot of imagination to realize that there is simply no place for a place like the Ten Forward lounge introduced in the second season of TNG.
Andrew Probert on the Ten Forward addition:
“With ALL of the window groupings I provided for such a space, on the saucer's forward underside, why did they decide to put it in the rim as they did?
At least work with the model (already established) and have header and footer windows with some sort of full-width graphic display running across the sensor-strip housing,… but, no.”
Obviously, both the people that made the proposal for Ten Forward and the people who sanctioned it did not (want to) understand the actual scale of the Enterprise-D and/or simply didn’t care.
It’s another sad and erroneous example of the infamous “nobody will measure it with a ruler” Hollywood prejudice Andrew had already been fighting against during TMP production (e.g. size of movie Enterprise’s
The problem with Ten Forward is not only its height, another problem are its three windows that cannot be rationalized with the acclaimed 6-footer VFX model of the Enterprise-D Andrew meticulously supervised – because the 6-footer only has two of these large windows at the bow!
Did they try to fix this mistake?
Yes, by commissioning another and less popular model (the one with the protruding surface panels) known as the 4-footer for the third season. They made the forward saucer hull thicker to somehow accommodate Ten Forward and changed the alignment of windows to have three at the bow’s center. As an unpleasant side effect the entire interior and vertical deck arrangement changed if you really want to rationalize the design alteration (I don’t dare to examine if the exterior windows still match those decks).
Here is an article
with many graphic illustrations to reveal the problem.
I can only
agree with the authors that “it’s a pity that the Art Department did not go with Probert’s well-thought out concept in the first place.”
(and that’s not the only item once you google for “Probert Ambassador Class”...)
For a general and occasional TNG viewer none of this is probably relevant, but given the amount of most commendable accuracy illustrated in this thread, Ten Forward could apparently be an issue that somehow needs to be resolved. YMMV