Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship at Illinois Institute of Tech | The Plan
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Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship at Illinois Institute of Tech

A Classical temple of the third millennium

John Ronan Architects

America settentrionale | Chicago

The IIT campus was designed by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe on an expansive site in Chicago’s Near South Side. Originally a mixed-use neighborhood, IIT is today close to block after block of impoverished housing and major traffic infrastructure including Chicago’s famous elevated train. Mies also designed several dozen buildings for the ambitious new campus, from the iconic Crown Hall and laboratories - temples for the technological faithful - to smaller components such as the IIT chapel and boiler house. If the IIT campus is marked by a pragmatic, at times bleak, mid-century Modernism, it also on occasion beguiles with the physical evidence of Mies’s sublime skill. In the late 20th Century, the IIT campus had seemed locked in its Miesian legacy, unable or unwilling to evolve and incorporate new voices or, arguably, new needs into its physical plant. That status quo was...

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