Hancock Highlighted as Google Honors Fazlur Khan

Google has honored thousands of events, celebrities, scientists, and others over the years with its “Google Doodles,” the cartoons that often replace its logo when people search for things.

Today, Chicago gets a two-fer. The primary beneficiary is Fazlur Khan, the legendary structural engineer who worked at Skidmore, Owings and Merrill’s Chicago office until his death in 1982. Today would have been his 88th birthday.

Google doodle honoring Fazlur R. Khan's 88th birthday (screenshot)

Google doodle honoring Fazlur R. Khan’s 88th birthday (screenshot)

Mr. Khan is best known for his work on the Willis Tower, the John Hancock Center, and the United States Air Force Academy. At a time when 20-story buildings would grab headlines around the world, Khan’s work was enabling Chicago to put up 100+ story towers in designs the world had never seen before.

But Google is featuring not only our adopted hometown hero (Khan was born in 1947 in what would eventually become Bangladesh). The illustration by Lydia Nichols features the John Hancock Center standing tall right in the middle of the Google logo.

While buildings have been featured in Google Doodles before, this is the first Chicago building we can remember being honored so. If we missed one, please let us know in the comments section below.

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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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1 Comment

  1. It’s a great honor and recognition to see Google do this for Fazlur Khan. I just wish they would have paid a little more attention to detail and finished the top of the building with a diamond rather than an X.

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