Architecture firm Pelli Clarke Pelli has been selected to design the new $195 million McCormick Place Event Center in Chicago that will double as home for the DePaul Blue Demons basketball program. With 10,000 seats, the building will also house large business and professional meetings as well as concerts and special events.
“We have designed a light, luminous event center that we hope will be a good neighbor and a dynamic expression of the events that it will house,” said Fred Clarke, FAIA, senior principal of Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects. “Its gently arching roof, visible from surrounding buildings and streets, will tie architecture to the image of DePaul basketball and McCormick Place events.”
The competition originally sought “professionally respected and admired design architects” known for “striking, imaginative and innovative buildings” that “generate public enthusiasm and become major urban attractions.” The evaluation committee was also looking for a design that would be “sensitive and accommodating to the surrounding neighborhood” – and they found that in Pelli Clarke Pelli’s design.
“The dynamic yet elegant design created by Pelli Clarke Pelli for the event center fits perfectly into the fabric of the community,” Reilly said. “The firm’s innovative design provides a functional and flexible space that will make the event center a wonderful complement to the convention center. The quality and distinction of this design will support our goal of attracting new business and serve as a catalyst to further enhance the economic vitality of the South Loop.”
The Event Center is scheduled for completion in the fall of 2016 and will be accompanied by a 1,200-room hotel for conventions and trade shows and a 500-room mid-market hotel for dining and entertainment. These buildings will come together to make up the McCormick Place Entertainment District.
Architects: Pelli Clarke Pelli
Location: McCormick Place
Photographs: Courtesy of Pelli Clarke Pelli