jueves, 18 de abril de 2024

IPW 2024


On Saturday, April 27, the Chicago Architecture Center (CAC) will open its new exhibition, Loop as Lab: Reshaping Downtowns, to the public. The timely exhibition focuses on trends influencing downtowns in Chicago and beyond—such as remote work, increased vacant office space and less retail—and how cities can adapt to these new realities. Focusing on the Loop, the exhibit explores how designers, civic leaders and residents can work together to reshape the city and confront the challenges of the post-COVID era.

“Chicago has always been at the forefront of architectural innovation, and 'Loop as Lab' exemplifies our city's ongoing commitment to pioneering new approaches in urban design,” said Eleanor Gorski, CEO and President, Chicago Architecture Center. “From the Marina Towers revolutionizing mixed-use space in the 1960s to modern equivalents in the reuse of the Thompson Center and development of Fulton Market, this exhibit demonstrates Chicago's forward-looking approach to tackling issues that downtowns worldwide currently face.”

The exhibit highlights four types of transformations that Chicago is already experiencing and the corresponding local projects that are finding solutions: Reside, Renew, Rewild and Reconnect. The Reside section explores transforming office space into residential buildings, using examples from Marina City to Manhattan's Financial District. Renew focuses on opportunities for reusing structures in creative new ways, with an in-depth look at plans for Chicago's Thompson Center. Rewild brings attention to the importance of green spaces and native plants through projects like the Wild Mile and Riverwalk, and Reconnect spotlights Chicago's connection points—from biking to the Chicago River to the L train, as central to the urban experience.

Each thematic section offers interactive experiences, inviting visitors to engage with hands-on design elements. From interactive models of iconic buildings to displays of native plants that are part of the “Wild Mile” along the Chicago River, "Loop as Lab" encourages active participation and reflection on the future of downtowns.

“We've designed 'Loop as Lab' to resonate with audiences of all backgrounds, from architecture enthusiasts to curious tourists,” said Eve Fineman, Director of Exhibitions at CAC. “By fostering inclusivity and engagement, we hope to empower people of all ages to have meaningful conversations about the future of our urban centers and what would make each of them see downtown as more of a true neighborhood.”

The exhibition's opening preview program on Thursday, April 25, will feature a provocative discussion on the architectural concepts presented in the show, moderated by Danny Ecker of Crain's Chicago Business and featuring representatives from the City of Chicago and real estate development. Tickets for the opening night event are available for purchase at architecture.org.

Friday, April 26 will be a preview day of the exhibition open exclusively for CAC members and their guests. On Saturday, April 27, the exhibition will open to the public with a special “Family Day” activity from 10 a.m. - 12 p.m., when admission will be free.

Visitors who want to learn more about the buildings and architectural concepts featured in the exhibit also can buy tickets to the “Loop as Lab” walking tour. The specialized tour launches May 15, with sessions on Wednesdays and Sundays.

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