Gridwerk

Gridwerk Architecture awarded 3rd place in 2012 Chicago Prize Competition: Future Prentice

We are proud to announce that our partner firm, Gridwerk Architecture has won 3rd place in the 2012 Chicago Prize Competition: Future Prentice.


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The Chicago Prize Competition occurs every other year and is an open, single stage, international competition run by the Chicago Architectural Club with the Chicago chapter of the American Institute of Architects. This year there were 71 entries from 13 different countries. This years challenge, Future Prentice, was to study Bertrand Goldberg’s Prentice Women’s Hospital and explore solutions for the historic site that set the stage for modern hospital design, even today.

The team was led by James Wild, founder and principal of our partner firm Gridwerk Architecture, with Ashley Wendela and Andres Lemus. Overall rendering by Saman Moayer. Presentation layout and entourage by Lauren Haras and Katelyn Smith. Additional support by Katherine Lee, Pedro Melis, Kerry Rutz, Tom Marquardt and marquardt+.


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Gridwerk’s design strategy looks to preserve Prentice as a center for community education with learning labs and science focused galleries, while creating a state-of-the-art laboratory research center connected by an open green roof ‘park’, accessible to the surrounding community, in the center of the NW campus.

Prentice and the adjoining site are ideal for promoting the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Education Coalition (STEM), which promotes the pursuit of careers in the sciences and technology.

The new, state of the art 500,000 sf lab building houses research labs and offices for NW, and supports the community with a needed public green space and knowledge resource center.


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A subtractive design approach was taken with the existing Prentice structure. Removal of floorplates opens the volumes and creates a large central atrium to connect programs, allow natural light, and create an open terrace garden. These moves celebrate the sculptural qualities of the building and create a sequence of slow ascent.

The top level of the existing plinth is transformed into an elevated public street and park that provides the community with a much needed green space and respite to NW patients and staff, while creating an intimate relationship between Prentice and the community.

Nestled between the lake and Michigan Avenue, and adjacent to public thoroughfares, the site is often overlooked. This new program and design strategy makes Prentice and the new plaza a destination for the world and provides NW a visible signal of health, wellness and community.


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