Southside Unions Tour: Function and Form – visits to Illinois Institute of Technology and University of Chicago buildings
Saturday, Feb. 26, 2–6:30 p.m.

This tour will depart from the Conference Concierge, Level 5, where your registration materials will be presented to you. Please plan to arrive no later than 1:45 p.m. on Saturday. We will board a bus for travel to the Hermann Hall Conference Center part of the Illinois Institute of Technology campus for a tour, then proceed to the McCormick Tribune Campus Center for a tour with Illinois Institute of Technology staff. We will reboard the bus and move to the University of Chicago and tour the Reynolds Club and Mandell Hall before returning to the hotel at 6:20 p.m. Your items can remain on the bus between tours.

This tour is sure to appeal to anyone interested in architecture and the interdependence of form and function for college unions. The tour will visit four very distinct facilities at two very different institutions. As of Feb. 15, space is available for additional registrants.  

Illinois Institute of Technology: In 1976, the American Institute of Architects designated the Illinois Institute of Technology campus as one of the 200 most important works of architecture in the country. Our tour will include two facilities: The Hermann Union Building and the McCormick Tribune Campus Center.

The result of an international design competition, the McCormick Tribune Campus Center was designed by Dutch architect, Rem Koolhaas, and includes a concrete and stainless steel tube that encloses a 530-foot stretch of the Green Line elevated commuter rail (L) tracks, passing directly over the one-story campus center building. The tube dampens the sound of trains overhead as students enjoy food venues, student organization offices, retail shops, a recreational facility, and campus events. Formerly the university union, the Hermann Hall Conference Center features a glass curtain walls and internally supported huge plate girders spanning the roof. The facility also boasts the McCormick Auditorium, which seats 836 people and has two ballrooms, eleven meeting spaces, and the Bog, the campus tavern.

Upon arrival, registrants will be broken up into smaller groups. They will go on a facility tour of the two buildings, focusing on resources and services for serving their students.
Tour will focus on:

  • Traffic patterns of the building
  • Construction of the tube
  • Furnishings, fixtures, and equipment—some of it is very unique
  • Costs associated with the building
  • Student use and programming in the building

Illinois Institute of Technology Fast Facts
Location: 3241 S. Federal Street. Chicago, IL 60616
Full-time enrollment: 6,500
Campus type: Urban
Building name: Hermann Hall Conference Center & McCormick Tribune Campus Center
Completed: 1965 & 2003
Other notables: Illinois Institute of Technology has architecturally significant buildings. The McCormick Tribune Campus Center was built by "starchitecht" Rem Koolhaas while Hermann Hall was built by students of Mies van der Rohe using Mies' plans. The McCormick Tribune Campus Center has a 530-foot tube built into the structure so that the L train can continue to run through the structure.

University of Chicago: Founded in 1892, University of Chicago features architecture reminiscent of the English Gothic model of Oxford University. Our tour will include three facilities: the Reynolds Club, Mandel Hall, and Ida Noyes Hall.
The Reynolds Club is the university's primary union and is often thought of as the hub of student life. The building offers a variety of dining options, as well as performance spaces and meeting rooms. Mandel Hall, the university's premier performance venue, is located within the Reynolds Club. Mandel Hall's rich Victorian interior includes seating for 985 audience members, an ornate balcony, majestic windows (including one made by Tiffany & Co., given to the university by the class of 1902), and detailed oak woodwork.

Ida Noyes Hall is an 82,000-square-foot facility originally designed to be a women's gymnasium and social center at the University of Chicago. Over the years, the facility has undergone modest changes and has hosted many events, large and small, for the university community. The central goal of Ida Noyes Hall is to provide facilities and services to student organizations and university departments.

University of Chicago Fast Facts
Location: 1212 E 59th St Chicago, IL 60637-1604
Full-time enrollment: 5,100 undergraduate; 10,500 graduate
Campus type: Urban
Building name: Ida Noyes & Reynolds Club


Updated Feb. 16, 2011
Updated Feb. 16, 2011

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