The Chicago Architecture Club named Lake Forest’s Kwong Von Glinow Design Office the recipient of the 2016 Chicago Prize. This is a biennial prize given for the design of an international competition. This year’s competition, titled On the Edge, asked architects and designers to rethink Lake Shore Drive’s connection to Chicago’s waterfront.
Kwong Von Glinow Design Office’s proposal, titled Lattices on the Drive, seeks to enhance the pedestrian’s relationship to Lake Shore Drive. At each underpass which leads to the Lake, an access point at the media brings pedestrians up to a steel-frame viewing deck from which they can see the Lake, the city, and of course, Lake Shore Drive. An exhibition of their winning proposal will be in the lobby of the Chicago Architecture Foundation through June.
Our project seeks to intensify the experience of Lake Shore Drive by providing pedestrian access along the Drive. Lake Shore Drive is no longer a driving-only experience. For the pedestrian, it becomes a gateway to access the waterfront, see the city, and admire the Lake.
Chicago is known for its post-and-beam, steel-frame construction which provides the bones for all of the magnificent buildings in the city. The idea of the open-lattice structures takes on the fundamental, bare bones of steel-frame construction without the need of a facade. As seen from Lake Shore Drive, the lattice structures serve as successive landmarks for the underpasses below.
From many blocks away, the lattice structure at each underpass serves as a signal that the lakefront is just beyond. Each Grand Entrance is a unique figure that gives an identity to each access street. The north- and south-bound lanes of Lake Shore Drive often split, creating an in-between space that is open to above.
We use this space as an opportunity to give the pedestrian a vertical access point above Lake Shore Drive by inserting a lattice structure. For the first time, the pedestrian can enjoy views to the lake and city above Lake Shore Drive. Source and Images, Courtesy of Kwong Von Glinow Design Office.