At the 64th annual AIA Chicago Designight event, held in the Navy Pier Grand Ballroom on October 25, Goettsch Partners received two design excellence awards, including the highest honor in the Distinguished Building category and special recognition for historic preservation in the Interior Architecture category.
Distinguished Building Honor Award
150 North Riverside
150 North Riverside is located at the confluence of the three branches of the Chicago River on a site that previously sat undeveloped for decades. Exposed railroad tracks on the west side and a city-required riverwalk on the east left an area on which to build that was considered impossibly narrow. Utilizing a core-supported structure with a small footprint at grade and a bridged podium over the tracks, the design resolves the site challenges and provides a 54-story office tower with efficient, column-free floors. The small building footprint allows for a majority of the two-acre site—more than 75 percent—to become a landscaped public park, plaza and riverwalk.
One juror commented, “I really like how they addressed their structural limitations—it’s creative.” Another noted, "It engages the ground nicely and public spaces look inviting. They intentionally made the private and public barrier thin.”
Special Recognition for Historic Preservation
Chicago Union Station Great Hall Restoration
Named a Chicago landmark in 2002, Chicago Union Station was designed by noted architecture firm Graham, Anderson, Probst & White and completed in 1925. The station's ornate Beaux-Arts main waiting room, the "Great Hall," is one of the United States’ most historic and memorable public spaces with its 219-foot-long vaulted skylight and connecting lobbies and stairwells.
Jurors were especially impressed with the restoration of the 219-foot-long vaulted skylight, along with the construction of a new watertight skylight built above to preserve the original. “This is a technically difficult thing to do; it’s a heroic effort to protect the interior and provide lighting to an exquisite space,” commented one juror.