Urban Land Institute Names 21 Finalists for 2022 ULI Americas Awards for Excellence
Winners will be announced this summer and will become finalists in the 2022 ULI Global Awards for Excellence.
Location: Chicago, Illinois, USA
Developers: Blackstone; EQ Office
Designers: Willis Tower/Catalog – Gensler; SkB Architects; Turner Construction Company/Clayco
Skydeck – Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM); Thinc Design; Clark Construction Group; Chicago Scenic Studios; JC Anderson
Site Size: 3.6 Acres
Willis Tower is located in the heart of downtown Chicago and has stood as a landmark on the city’s skyline since 1973. In 2017, EQ Office began a massive repositioning to redevelop the iconic building – transforming it from a closed-off, foreboding tower with zero streetscape into a welcoming and lively neighborhood center that invites the public in with a carefully curated, hospitality-focused experience.
The project forged ahead despite the challenges of supporting a daily worker population of nearly 15,000 and hosting thousands of daily Skydeck tourists. Now complete, EQ Office has reinvigorated an entire city block and created a human-centered experience that brings the best of work, life, and experience under one roof. The $500+ million restoration project is the biggest in the building’s 49-year history, encompassing a completely modernized base building system including the largest elevator modernization ever completed, 300,000 square feet of dining and experiential space known as Catalog, 150,000 square feet of tenant-exclusive amenity spaces, two world class art installations, a 30,000 square-foot outdoor terrace, and a brand-new multi-level Skydeck tourist experience.
Throughout all phases of the transformation, EQ made a conscious effort to find ways to improve energy efficiency and reduce Willis Tower’s environmental footprint. As a result, Willis Tower achieved LEED Platinum status, the largest building in the country to ever earn these accolades on an existing building from the U.S. Green Building Council.