IIT’s Main Building to Become Student Housing

The IIT Main Building (Courtesy of Artefaqs architecture photography)

The IIT Main Building (Courtesy of Artefaqs architecture photography)

One of the great architectural institutions that helped transform Chicagoland is undergoing a change, itself.  The Illinois Institute of Technology wants to renovate the Main Building at 3300 South Federal Street into residences.  Right now, according to I.I.T.’s web site, it is used for “student services.”  It was built in 1892, and named a city landmark in 2004.

The plan is to completely re-do the inside of the building, transforming it into 81 “dwelling units.”  How many students fit in a dwelling unit is open to speculation these days.  Just be glad we’ve passed the era when sophomores in letter sweaters would cram themselves into phone booths to impress girls.

In a nod to the college’s early years, when the neighborhood was more aligned with swine than steel, the paperwork pushed to the city for the conversion was filed by the “Armour Institute.”  Though, the current Armour Institute LLC is just a shell for MCM Development Group out of Cleveland, Ohio and not actually related to the college’s founder.

The paperwork also includes architectural drawings of the historic building done by Pappageorge Haymes, which gives us an opportunity to admire its design in vector form.  It also tells us that the building is exactly 123 feet to the top of the its gables. Now you know.

Illinois Institite of Technology - Main Building - Chicago, Illinois - November, 2009 - 003a

If it wasn’t for highways and railroad tracks, this feature of the building would be on Clark Street, making this the Clark Gable. (Courtesy of Artefaqs architecture photography)

Diagram of the Illinois Institute of Technology Main Building

Location: 3300 South Federal Street, Bronzeville

Author: Editor

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

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