Text description provided by the architects. The skyline of Chicago can be seen as the timeline of skyscraper history, which started in 1885 with the Home Insurance Building.
The new Aqua Tower by Studio Gang is a highlight along this timeline, not just because of its height (250m tall) but also because of its sculptural condition.
The design was inspired by the striated limestone outcroppings common in the Great Lakes area (see photo below). But this sinuous shape is not just a mere formal gesture, but it is also a strategy to extend the views and maximize solar shading. And by looking at the plans we see a rational structure, true to the Mies legacy in the city.
I discovered Studio Gang in a lecture by Jeanne Gang at the 2009 AIA Convention, and I was impressed by her work. You can see our previous coverage of Studio Gang projects in ArchDaily, such as the Bengt Sjostrom Starlight Theatre.
- 82-story mixed-use residential tower (819 ft, 250 m tall):
- 215 hotels rooms (floors 1-18)
- 476 rental residential units (floors 19-52)
- 263 condominium units & Penthouses (floors 53-80)
- 55,000 square feet (5,100 m2) of retail and office space
- 6 levels of underground parking.
- 8-story base (140,000 sqf, 13,000m2) with a a 82,550 sq ft (7,669 m2) terrace with gardens, gazebos, pools, hot tubs, a walking/running track and fire pit.