Chicago: Miles of landmarks & Skyscrapers 2011/09/18

走在 Chicago 的路上,是件很忙的事 ─ 忙著看建築。每每在某個不期然的轉身,就讓你碰到一幢已列入記載的 landmark;即使你年年造訪這個城市,它也總有辦法,時不時要你被迎面而來的新 skyscraper 嚇一大跳。這就是 Chicago !

Chicago Water Tower (1869): 806 N. Michigan Avenue, designed by William W. Boyington

                                                                                                        Chicago’s oldest tower survived the Great Fire of 1871 due to its limestone construction.

Cable House (1886): 25 E. Erie Street, designed by Cobb & Frost

Designed in the Richardsonian Romanesque style, this house was built for Ransom R. Cable, the President of the Chicago, Rock Island and Pacific Railway Company.

Former Chicago Historical Society Building (1892): 632 N. Dearborn Street, designed by Henry Ives Cobb

This monumental, picturesque-style structure is one of the city’s few remaining and best examples of Romanesque Revival architecture. The Chicago Historical Society occupied the building till 1931; it was that organization’s need for a fireproof structure that accounts for the structure’s granite-clad construction. The building’s later uses included the prestigious Institute of Design and recording studios for influential blues and rock n’ roll performers in the 1950s and ’60s. Now the Excalibur Nightclub takes the building.

Monadnock Block (1893): 53 W. Jackson Blvd. designed by North half – John Wellborn Root & Daniel Burnham, South half – Holabird & Roche

                                                                                                        At 16-story and 197 feet tall, this is the world’s tallest masonry building. The two halves of the building are similar in scale and color, but quite different in style. The north part, famed for its lack of ornamentation, is the last skyscraper to employ a wall-bearing building method. The exterior walls are six feet thick at the base and give the building a monumentally tough, straight-forward look. The south half is an early example of steel-frame construction, revealed by its narrow piers and wide windows. Together, they mark the end of one building tradition and the beginning of another.

p.s. May 1, 2003, the Chicago-based company Intelligentsia Coffee and Tea opened his second Coffeebar in Monadnock Block. The interior of this coffeebar has been beautifully restored and is straight out of 1920’s Chicago with art deco grating and fixtures, marble tabletops, exposed woodwork, and original tile floors.

Intelligentsia Coffee brews individual servings through the brew bar right in front of you, so you know you’re never getting a bottom-of-the-pot cup. The major impetus behind the move to drippers was “because we wanted something that wasn’t necessarily mechanical, brews a delicious cup and, finally, was something that people can take home and use at home.” http://www.intelligentsiacoffee.com

Art Institute of Chicago (1893): 111 South Michigan Avenue, designed by Shepley, Rutan & Coolidge

It was designed in the Beaux-Arts style for the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition as the World’s Congress Auxiliary Building with the intent that the Art Institute occupies the space after the fair closed.

                                                             The Art Institute’s famous western entrance on Michigan Avenue is guarded by two bronze lion statues created by Edward L. Kemeys in 1894. The sculptor gave them unofficial names: the south lion is “stands in an attitude of defiance," and the north lion is “on the prowl." When a Chicago sports team plays in the championships of their respective league, the lions are frequently dressed in that team’s uniform. Evergreen wreaths are placed around their necks during the Christmas season.

On May 16, 2009, the Art Institute opened the Modern Wing, the largest expansion in the museum’s history. The 264,000-square-foot addition, designed by Renzo Piano makes the one million square feet Art Institute the second largest art museum in the United States behind only the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City.

Chicago Public Library/Cultural Center (1897): 78 E. Washington Street, designed by Shepley, Rutan & Coolidge

The Beaux Arts style was influenced by the buildings of the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition. The interior is extensively decorated with mosaics, marbles, bronze, and two stained-glass domes designed by the Tiffany Glass and Decorating Company. (The world’s largest Tiffany glass dome was completed in 2008.)

Central Office Building (1914): 320 North Clark Street, designed by George C. Nimmons

The clock tower is no longer in the center of the building. One side of the building was shortened when LaSalle Street was expanded in 1926.

Wrigley Field (1914): 1060 W. Addison Street, designed by Zachary Taylor Davis

Originally built in 1914 to house a team in the now-defunct Federal Baseball League, Wrigley field has been home to the National League Chicago Cubs since 1916.

Archbishop Quigley Center (1919): 103 East Chestnut Street, designed by Zachary Davis

Prior to its close on June 22, 2007, Archbishop Quigley Preparatory Seminary was a Roman Catholic high school for young men contemplating the priesthood. Quigley was added to the National Register of Historic Places on February 16, 1996. Quigley’s Chapel of St. James was modeled on the Sainte-Chapelle in Paris, the royal chapel built by King Louis IX to house the relics of the crown of thorns. Its stunning rose window and other stained glass, composed of 650,000 individual pieces forming 245 scenes, have been called “the crown jewels of Chicago’s architectural treasures."

London Guarantee and Accident Building (1923): 360 N. Michigan Avenue, designed by Alfred S. Alschuler

One of the cities’s few and best examples of the Beaux Arts-style Classical Revival applied to the design of a tall office building. Built by a British insurance company to be its American headquarters, the building’s irregular-shaped site was part of the land once occupied by Fort Dearborn (1803-56).

Wrigley Building (1924): 410 N Michigan Avenue, designed by Charles Beersman

The Wrigley Building is home of the Wrigley Chewing Gum Company, which was founded by William Wrigley Jr. It was modeled on the Giralda tower of the cathedral in Seville. The clock tower on the south building features four large dials. Each dial has a diameter of about 20ft. The aluminum hour and minute hands on the clock are respectively more than 6 ft and 9 ft long.

p.s. William Wrigley Jr. started off as a soap salesman who gave away baking powder for free if people bought the soap. People started liking the baking powder more than the soap so he started selling baking powder. He gave away chewing gum for free with his baking soda. People liked the gum, so he decided that he should sell chewing gum. He started his own gum company and became a great success.

Allerton Hotel (1924): 701 N. Michigan Avenue, designed by Fugard & Knapp, Murgatroyd & Ogden


The Allerton represents a rare Chicago example of the North Italian Renaissance, a style of architecture that includes decorative brickwork, carved stone details, and a picturesque roofline evocative of buildings constructed in northern Italy during the 14th and 15th centuries.

Tribune Tower (1925): 435 N. Michigan Avenue, designed by Raymond M. Hood & John Mead Howells

This tower is home to the Chicago Tribune, the city’s oldest newspaper (1847), and built after the Cathedral of Rouen’s Butter Tower. The base of the building is studded with over 120 stones from famed sites and structures in all 50 states and dozens of foreign countries.

John B. Murphy Memorial Building (1926): 50 East Erie Street, designed by Marshall & Fox

The building is designed in the French Renaissance style, patterned after the Chapelle de Notre-Dame de Consolation in Paris.

35 East Wacker Drive (1927): Designed by Joachim Giaver & Frederick Dinkelberg

                                                                                                                Originally known as the Jewelers Building, it was created for the city’s diamond merchants and had an unusual security procedure – to reduce the chances that its tenants would be mugged walking between their cars and their offices, the building featured a central auto elevator that could lift cars as high as the 22nd floor.

Marina City (1964): 300 N. State Street, designed by Bertrand Goldberg

In each of the circular tower have four hundred and fifty wedge-shaped apartments. The low portion of the building can accommodate 450 automobiles. The river-level marina gives residents with boats easy access to Lake Michigan.

The John Hancock Center (1969): 875 N. Michigan Avenue, designed by Bruce J. Graham & Fazlur R. Khan

Chicago’s fourth tallest building stands 100 stories high (1127’). It is braced by a steel skeleton – seen as X’s up each side. Each X spans 18 floors. The X-bracing also virtually eliminates the need for interior columns. The John Hancock building boasts America’s highest indoor swimming pool, the world’s highest ice skating rink and Chicago’s highest cafe, Lavazza Espression Café.

Willis Tower (1974): 233 S. Wacker Drive, designed by Bruce Graham

                                                                                                                  The tallest U.S. tower (formerly “sears”) is a cluster of nine shafts, the highest soaring up 1450’. Its glass-balconied “Sky deck” offers views of three states.

Smurfit-Stone Building (1984): 150 N. Michigan Avenue, designed by A. Epstein & Sons

This tower’s diamond-shaped top is visible from almost anywhere in Grant Park.

One Superior Place (1999): 1 W. Superior Street, designed by Loewenberg + Associates

One Superior Place is a 502 feet tall, 52-story, and 809-unit tower. I lived there in 2009.

Grand Plaza Apartments (2003): 540 North State Street, designed by Loewenberg + Associates

Grand Plaza Apartments is a 641 feet tall and 56-story buildings. This is where I live now.

Trump International Hotel and Tower (2009): 401 N. Wabash Avenue, designed by Skidmore, Owings & Merrill

Chicago’s second tallest tower rises 1362’.

Aqua (2010): 430 E. Waterside Drive, designed by Jeanne Gang

With its rippling facade and vast green roof, Chicago’s Aqua Tower is a revelation. It’s also the tallest building in the world to be designed by a woman. The design was inspired by the striated limestone outcroppings common in the Great Lakes area. The distinctive rippled surface on this tower – as if water is flowing down its sides – was made by varying the curving balcony size and shapes on each floor.

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One Response to Chicago: Miles of landmarks & Skyscrapers 2011/09/18

  1. Good day, friend. I’d like to use one of the photos of Quigley North on the cover of a book I’m producing about minor seminaries in the US. Would it be possible for me to receive your permission to do that? I’ll send you a free copy of the book in exchange. Thanks! Sebastian Mahfood, owner of En Route Books and Media. My contact information is contactus@enroutebooksandmedia.com and my phone is 314-706-1009.

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