The Chicago Architecture Center and the Chicago Architectural Club announced the jury's selection of three winning designs for the Thompson Center Design Ideas Competition that represent three distinct, creative visions for the State of Illinois Thompson Center designed by Helmut Jahn, built in 1984 and put up for sale in May 2021.
The three winning design proposals were created by Eastman Lee Architects, Solomon Cordwell Buenz and Perkins&Will. The winning designs, and the four finalist designs awarded honorable mention, are now available for viewing through October at a free pop-up exhibit at the Chicago Architecture Center, 111 E. Wacker Dr. (Note: COVID-19 protocols are being followed.)
Eastman Lee submitted "Offset: The Vertical Loop," which proposes a new thermal enclosure behind the original curtain wall set atop a ground-level public park. Each floor is zoned, from public uses at the ground level to commercial above, along with private residences and vegetable gardens at the roof.
Solomon Cordwell Buenz submitted "One Chicago School," promoted as a new prototype public school focused on public policy and civic engagement for students in Chicago to learn, question and ignite change.
Lastly, Perkins&Will submitted "Public Pool," which reimagines the Thompson Center's iconic atrium as a public water park with active ground-level programs and a hotel above the area.
A November public forum on the future of the Thompson Center will feature the architects of the three winning design proposals, a jury representative and civic leaders. For more information, visit architecture.org .