Northwestern Selects Five Big Names to Replace One Goldberg

What is, and what may be

What is, and what may be

For the last few years, Chicago’s architecture and preservation communities have been waiting for the other shoe to drop. After losing a heated battle against Northwestern University to preserve the beloved former Prentice Womens’ Hospital Building by Bertrand Goldberg, the question has been what would Northwestern eventually replace the building with?

Today three shiny, finely tailored loafers fell out of the sky in Streeterville.

If you’re a follower of our Twitter or Facebook feeds, you got to see pictures of the proposals very early this morning — hours before they were formally unveiled to the public.    It’s just one of those things we do because we like you.

Each candidate for the new Northwestern University Biomedical Research Building comes with an outstanding pedigree. All are rooted in Chicago, with two seeking outside help from Boston and Philadelphia.

Each is also designed to be built in two phases. The first dozen stories, about 600,000 square feet, starting in 2015. The remainder of the building? It’s hard to say. This Northwestern building is hardly the first Chicago skyscraper to be constructed in phases, but skyscraper fans who have written in so far are still disappointed at having to wait for the structure to reach its full intended potential of 1.2 million square feet.

Below are three photo galleries of the entries from each competitor or team. Take a look at the proposals, and then let Northwestern know what you think of them by clicking here to send an e-mail to the team that is going to make the final decision.

There isn’t a deadline for when the choice will be made yet, but we’ve been told it’s definitely going to be before the end of the year.

Goettsch Partners and Ballinger (Chicago and Philadelphia)

Perkins and Will (Chicago)

AS+GG and Payette (Chicago and Boston)

Author: Editor

Editor founded the Chicago Architecture Blog in 2003, after a long career in journalism. He can be reached at

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