AD Interviews: Philip Enquist, SOM

When I visited Chicago, I had to visit one of the key actors on shaping a city that breaths architecture, from big part of the skyline to the Millenium Park: SOM.

I have visited before, to interview Craig Hartman at the San Francisco office, but Chicago was were it all started back in 1936 with Louis Skidmore and Nathaniel Owings, and John O. Merrill who joined in 1939.

This time I interviewed (FAIA), the partner in charge of urban design and planning. Philip has been involved in development and redevelopment initiatives for college campuses, existing city neighborhoods, new cities, rural districts, downtown commercial centers, port areas and even in a master-plan for the entire nation of Bahrain.

It was amazing to hear from him on different processes that have been shaping the most important cities in the world, such as Beijing’s Central Business District or the master plan for the Millenium Park. But I was also surprised about a project we presented to you earlier, the vision for the Great Lakes area, a project that shows a lot of responsibility  as an architect and an example that we still have a very important role in our society.

After the break, the usual questions a bonus with what’s a good city, and some photos of the office.

What is Architecture?

What should be the role of architects in contemporary society?

What is the importance of innovation for your work?

What is the importance of networking for your work?

What is the importance of the Internet for your work?

What would you recommend to someone who wants to study architecture?

After your experience, what can you tell us on running, maintaining and expanding a practice?

Example of a good city and why

My visit to SOM Chicago office:

Philip's office, Gehry chairs
Philip’s office, Gehry chairs
The city of Chicago, with SOM buildings in grey color
The city of Chicago, with SOM buildings in grey color
The central void of the building
The central void of the building
The central void of the building
The central void of the building
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
Models of SOM project
The Burj Khalifa (former Burj Dubai)
The Burj Khalifa (former Burj Dubai)
Cite: Basulto, David. "AD Interviews: Philip Enquist, SOM" 22 Oct 2010. ArchDaily. Accessed 24 Apr 2014. <http://www.archdaily.com/?p=84164>

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