HYDE PARK — The architects behind the High Line in New York City will build their first project in Chicago at the University of Chicago.
Diller Scofidio + Renfro will design the new Rubenstein Forum for a vacant lot on campus at 60th Street and Woodlawn Avenue.
“As our first building in Chicago, the Rubenstein Forum presents a unique challenge: to imagine a contemporary place of discourse for all of the university’s constituent departments and institutes as well as invited scholars and dignitaries from around the world,” said Elizabeth Diller, a founding partner of the firm.
The building, funded by a gift from Carlyle Group founder David Rubenstein, is expected to open in 2018 as a mix of student union and gathering space for academics and students on campus.
“The new building will combine a variety of spaces, both formal and informal, large and small, calm and animated, focused and diffuse, scheduled and spontaneous,” Diller said. “The Forum's unique position on the Midway [Plaisance] will allow for expansive views toward the campus and surrounding communities as well as downtown Chicago and Lake Michigan.”
Sam Cholke says this project is in the very early phases:
The firm is best known for its adaptation of a disused railroad overpass as a park in New York City called the High Line, as well as art museums, including the Institute for Contemporary Art in Boston, the Broad Museum in Los Angeles and the Museum of Modern Art expansion in New York City.
“Diller Scofidio + Renfro brings exceptional talent and vision to the design of this important addition to our campus,” said university President Robert Zimmer. “The Forum will reinforce and enhance the convening power of the university and its role as a leading intellectual destination.”
The full scale of the gift from Rubenstein, who Forbes estimates is worth $2.5 billion and who has already contributed $20 million to the university’s Law School, is still unknown.
The university has not yet released the estimated cost of the Forum project.
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