Built during the height of the Jazz Age, the 475,000 sf Shoreland was long one of Chicago’s most glamorous hotels, drawing famous and infamous guests with its opulent interior and proximity to Lake Michigan. Studio Gang’s renovation and restoration of the building transforms the Shoreland into a residential tower with renewed beauty and status, as well as full capacity to meet contemporary residents’ needs. Along with reconfiguring and upgrading the building’s 13 floors to include 330 apartment units, Studio Gang’s design also reactivates the Shoreland’s public areas, creating exciting spaces for events and dining while preserving residents’ privacy. The lobby and mezzanine are reconnected and the circulation between them is clarified with a new grand staircase that leads ballroom guests to the second floor. On the exterior, low plantings replace trees to open the building to the street at ground level. Outdoor terraces for public use as well as balconies for residents bring life to the building’s third floor.+ More details
The design of the 135,000 sf Starlight Theatre maintains the tradition of open–air performances at Rock Valley College while offering new flexibility, allowing the theatre company to extend its season and guarantee shows even when it rains. Technologies typically employed to move roofs over massive stadiums were adapted to fit the scale and budget of its elegantly sculptural roof form, which opens like the petals of a flower in fair weather, providing both shelter and drama that the former stage lacked. Beneath the roof, the central theatre space forms an unexpected vertical axis to the sky that enhances the audience’s pleasure of being outdoors. With the new building and expanded programming possibilities, Starlight has transformed itself into a popular regional destination and favorite summer venue for the community. Film by Spirit of Space spiritofspace.com+ More details
The project transforms a picturesque urban pond from the 19th century into an ecological habitat buzzing with life. With the design’s improvements to water quality, hydrology, landscape, accessibility, and shelter, the site is able to function as an outdoor classroom in which the co-existence of natural and urban surroundings is demonstrated. A new boardwalk circumscribing the pond passes through various educational zones that explicate the different animals, plants, and habitat found in each. A pavilion integrated into the boardwalk sequence provides shelter for open-air classes on the site. Inspired by the tortoise shell, its laminated structure consists of prefabricated, bent-wood members and a series of interconnected fiberglass pods that give global curvature to the surface. Film by Spirit of Space spiritofspace.com+ More details
By making typically behind-the-scenes aspects of the filmmaking process visible, the Columbia College Media Production Center is more than a building in which learning takes place: it is itself a valuable teaching tool. Including three large sound stages for instruction in film, video and motion capture, as well as teaching space for lighting, set-making, directing and animation classes, the Media Production Center is a professional-quality facility whose design encourages a new level of interdisciplinary collaboration among students and faculty. The first new construction building in Columbia's 118-year history, it is also a new model for sustainability in a discipline known for its high energy consumption. Film by Hedrich Blessing and Thirst hedrichblessing.com 3st.com+ More details
The twenty-first century is an age of electronic connectivity that radically expands pop music's audience, but simultaneously threatens its economic viability. The Taipei Pop Music Center challenges the notion by making real space and live experience more exciting and more enduring than their virtual counterparts. Two primary venues compose the building: the one-of-a-kind Oculus (which accommodates 13,000 fans under a giant void that opens to the sky) and the Indoor Main Hall (which can hold 5600 fans in a range of configurations). Leading to the Main Hall are the "Famous Steps,” whose amphitheatre-like topography creates opportunities for spontaneous performances and social gatherings. Additional program—including restaurants, retail kiosks, and recording booths—is connected by the “Public Loop” that culminates at the Hall of Fame on the building’s third and highest floor. The building's compact design preserves the majority of the site for use as a vibrant urban park, serving the many outdoor music festivals of Taipei while adding important green infrastructure to this rapidly-developing neighborhood of Nangang.+ More details
At 82 stories and over 1.9 million sf, Aqua Tower is one of few high-rises in the world that creates a community on its facade. With a hotel, apartments, condominiums, parking, offices, and one of Chicago's largest green roofs, this multi-use tower demonstrates both architectural and technical achievements. Its outdoor terraces—which differ in shape from floor to floor based on criteria such as views, solar shading, and dwelling size/type—create a strong connection to the outdoors and the city, as well as form the tower's distinctive undulating appearance.+ More details
At 82 stories and over 1.9 million sf, Aqua Tower is one of few high-rises in the world that creates a community on its facade. With a hotel, apartments, condominiums, parking, offices, and one of Chicago’s largest green roofs, this multi-use tower demonstrates both architectural and technical achievements. Its outdoor terraces—which differ in shape from floor to floor based on criteria such as views, solar shading, and dwelling size/type—create a strong connection to the outdoors and the city, as well as form the tower’s distinctive undulating appearance. Film by Spirit of Space spiritofspace.com+ More details
Studio Gang Architects hired Spirit of Space to document the building of their exhibit Building: Inside Studio Gang Architects, featured at the Art Institute of Chicago through February 24th, 2013. http://www.artic.edu/exhibition/building-inside-studio-gang-architects+ More details
Building: Inside Studio Gang Architects, the first solo exhibition dedicated to the work of Studio Gang, opened at the Art Institute of Chicago on September 24, 2012 and will run through February 24, 2013. For more information on the exhibition, please visit http://www.artic.edu/exhibition/building-inside-studio-gang-architects. Film by Tom Harris (c) Hedrich Blessing.+ More details
Video by Tom Harris and Matt Messner documenting the full presentations during the event that MAS Context and Studio Gang Architects organized on Wednesday, May 2nd 2012 to celebrate the release of the OWNERSHIP issue of MAS Context, and Studio Gang’s “The Garden in the Machine” project, currently on display at The Museum of Modern Art’s Foreclosed: Rehousing the American Dream exhibition in New York. Iker Gil is an architect, urban designer, and director of MAS Studio. In addition, he is the editor in chief of the design journal MAS Context and an Adjunct Assistant Professor at the School of Architecture at UIC. He is the recipient of the 2010 Emerging Visions Award from the Chicago Architectural Club. Jeanne Gang is an architect, and the founder and principal of Studio Gang Architects, a Chicago-based collective of architects, designers, and thinkers whose projects confront pressing contemporary issues. In 2011, Jeanne was named a MacArthur Fellow.+ More details
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