Chicago's architecture is famous throughout the world and one style is referred to as the Chicago School. Much of its early work is also known as Commercial Style.In the history of architecture, the first Chicago School was a school of architects active in Chicago in the late 19th, and at the turn of the 20th century. They were among the first to promote the new technologies of steel-frame construction in commercial buildings, and developed a spatial aesthetic which co-evolved with, and then came to influence, parallel developments in European Modernism. A "Second Chicago School" with a modernist aesthetic emerged in the 1940s through 1970s, which pioneered new building technologies and structural systems, such as the tube-frame structure.
While the term "Chicago School" is widely used to describe buildings constructed in the city during the 1880s and 1890s, this term has been disputed by scholars, in particular in reaction to Carl Condit's 1952 book The Chicago School of Architecture. Historians such as H. Allen Brooks, Winston Weisman and Daniel Bluestone have pointed out that the phrase suggests a unified set of aesthetic or conceptual precepts, when, in fact, Chicago buildings of the era displayed a wide variety of styles and techniques. Contemporary publications used the phrase "Commercial Style" to describe the innovative tall buildings of the era, rather than proposing any sort of unified "school."
Some of the distinguishing features of the Chicago School are the use of steel-frame buildings with masonry cladding (usually terra cotta), allowing large plate-glass window areas and limiting the amount of exterior ornamentation. Sometimes elements of neoclassical architecture are used in Chicago School skyscrapers. Many Chicago School skyscrapers contain the three parts of a classical column. The lowest floors functions as the base, the middle stories, usually with little ornamental detail, act as the shaft of the column, and the last floor or two, often capped with a cornice and often with more ornamental detail, represent the capital.
The "Chicago window" originated in this school. It is a three-part window consisting of a large fixed center panel flanked by two smaller double-hung sash windows. The arrangement of windows on the facade typically creates a grid pattern, with some projecting out from the facade forming bay windows. The Chicago window combined the functions of light-gathering and natural ventilation; a single central pane was usually fixed, while the two surrounding panes were operable. These windows were often deployed in bays, known as oriel windows , that projected out over the street.
Architects whose names are associated with the Chicago School include Henry Hobson Richardson, Dankmar Adler, Daniel Burnham, William Holabird, William LeBaron Jenney, Martin Roche, John Root, Solon S. Beman, and Louis Sullivan. Frank Lloyd Wright started in the firm of Adler and Sullivan but created his own Prairie Style of architecture.
The Home Insurance Building, which some regarded as the first skyscraper in the world, was built in Chicago in 1885 and was demolished in 1931.
In the 1940s, a "Second Chicago School" emerged from the work of Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and his efforts of education at the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago. Mies sought to concentrate on neutral architectural forms instead of historicist ones, and the standard Miesian building is characterized by the presence of large glass panels and the use of steel for vertical and horizontal members.
The Second Chicago School's first and purest expression was the 860–880 Lake Shore Drive Apartments (1951) and their technological achievements. The structural engineer for the Lake Shore Drive Apartments project was Georgia Louise Harris Brown, who was the first African-American to receive an architecture degree from the University of Kansas, and second African-American woman to receive an architecture license in the United States.
Skidmore, Owings & Merrill, a Chicago-based architectural firm, was the first to erect buildings conforming to the features of the Second Chicago School. Myron Goldsmith, Bruce Graham, Walter Netsch, and Fazlur Khan were among its most influential architects.The Bangladeshi-born structural engineer Khan introduced a new structural system of framed tubes in skyscraper design and construction. The tube structure, formed by closely spaced interconnected exterior columns, resists "lateral forces in any direction by cantilevering from the foundation." About half the exterior surface is available for windows. Where larger openings like garage doors are required, the tube frame must be interrupted, with transfer girders used to maintain structural integrity. The first building to apply the tube-frame construction was the DeWitt-Chestnut Apartment Building, which Khan designed and was completed in Chicago by 1963. This laid the foundations for the tube structures of many other later skyscrapers, including his own John Hancock Center and Willis Tower.
Today, there are different styles of architecture all throughout the city, such as the Chicago School, neo-classical, art deco, modern, and postmodern.
A skyscraper is a tall continuously habitable building having multiple floors. Modern sources currently define skyscrapers as being at least 100 metres (330 ft) or 150 metres (490 ft) in height, though there is no universally accepted definition. Skyscrapers are very tall high-rise buildings. Historically, the term first referred to buildings with between 10 and 20 stories when these types of buildings began to be constructed in the 1880s. Skyscrapers may host offices, hotels, residential spaces, and retail spaces.
Louis Henry Sullivan was an American architect, and has been called a "father of skyscrapers" and "father of modernism". He was an influential architect of the Chicago School, a mentor to Frank Lloyd Wright, and an inspiration to the Chicago group of architects who have come to be known as the Prairie School. Along with Wright and Henry Hobson Richardson, Sullivan is one of "the recognized trinity of American architecture". The phrase "form follows function" is attributed to him, although he credited the concept to ancient Roman architect Vitruvius. In 1944, Sullivan was the second architect to posthumously receive the AIA Gold Medal.
The architecture of the United States demonstrates a broad variety of architectural styles and built forms over the country's history of over two centuries of independence and former Spanish and British rule.
Modern architecture, or modernist architecture, was an architectural movement or architectural style based upon new and innovative technologies of construction, particularly the use of glass, steel, and reinforced concrete; the idea that form should follow function (functionalism); an embrace of minimalism; and a rejection of ornament. It emerged in the first half of the 20th century and became dominant after World War II until the 1980s, when it was gradually replaced as the principal style for institutional and corporate buildings by postmodern architecture.
The Home Insurance Building was a skyscraper that stood in Chicago from 1885 to 1931. Originally ten stories and 138 ft (42.1 m) tall, it was designed by William Le Baron Jenney in 1884 and completed the next year. Two floors were added in 1891, bringing its now finished height to 180 feet. It was the first tall building to be supported both inside and outside by a fireproof structural steel frame, though it also included reinforced concrete. It is considered the world's first skyscraper.
The buildings and architecture of Chicago reflect the city's history and multicultural heritage, featuring prominent buildings in a variety of styles. Most structures downtown were destroyed by the Great Chicago Fire in 1871.
William Le Baron Jenney was an American architect and engineer who is known for building the first skyscraper in 1884.
Fazlur Rahman Khan was a Bangladeshi-American structural engineer and architect, who initiated important structural systems for skyscrapers. Considered the "father of tubular designs" for high-rises, Khan was also a pioneer in computer-aided design (CAD). He was the designer of the Sears Tower, since renamed Willis Tower, the tallest building in the world from 1973 until 1998 and the 100-story John Hancock Center.
The Wainwright Building is a 10-story, 41 m (135 ft) terra cotta office building at 709 Chestnut Street in downtown St. Louis, Missouri. The Wainwright Building is considered to be one of the first aesthetically fully expressed early skyscrapers. It was designed by Dankmar Adler and Louis Sullivan and built between 1890 and 1891. It was named for local brewer, building contractor, and financier Ellis Wainwright.
The Bayard–Condict Building at 65 Bleecker Street between Broadway and Lafayette Street, at the head of Crosby Street in the NoHo neighborhood of Manhattan, New York City is the only work of architect Louis Sullivan in New York City. It was built between 1897 and 1899 in the Chicago School style; the associate architect was Lyndon P. Smith. The building was originally known as the Condict Building before being renamed the Bayard Building. The building was considered to be a radical design for its time, since it contravened the strictures of American Renaissance architecture which were the accepted status quo, but had little influence on architectural design in New York City, because of its location in the industrial area that Bleecker Street was during that period. It is located in the NoHo Historic District.
The Monadnock Building is a 16-story skyscraper located at 53 West Jackson Boulevard in the south Loop area of Chicago. The north half of the building was designed by the firm of Burnham & Root and built starting in 1891. The tallest load-bearing brick building ever constructed, it employed the first portal system of wind bracing in America. Its decorative staircases represent the first structural use of aluminum in building construction. The later south half, constructed in 1893, was designed by Holabird & Roche and is similar in color and profile to the original, but the design is more traditionally ornate. When completed, it was the largest office building in the world. The success of the building was the catalyst for an important new business center at the southern end of the Loop.
The design and construction of skyscrapers involves creating safe, habitable spaces in very high buildings. The buildings must support their weight, resist wind and earthquakes, and protect occupants from fire. Yet they must also be conveniently accessible, even on the upper floors, and provide utilities and a comfortable climate for the occupants. The problems posed in skyscraper design are considered among the most complex encountered given the balances required between economics, engineering, and construction management.
The Guaranty Building, formerly called the Prudential Building, is an early skyscraper in Buffalo, New York. It was designed by Louis Sullivan and Dankmar Adler and completed in 1896. The building has been declared a National Historic Landmark.
The Rookery Building is a historic office building located at 209 South LaSalle Street in the Chicago Loop. Completed by architects Daniel Burnham and John Wellborn Root of Burnham and Root in 1888, it is considered one of their masterpiece buildings, and was once the location of their offices. The building is 181 feet (55 m) in height, twelve stories tall, and is considered the oldest standing high-rise in Chicago. It has a unique construction style featuring exterior load-bearing walls and an interior steel frame, providing a transition between accepted and new building techniques. The lobby was remodeled in 1905 by Frank Lloyd Wright. From 1989 to 1992, the lobby was restored to Wright's design.
The First Leiter building was a Chicago commercial structure built in 1879 by William Le Baron Jenney. It was renovated and extended in 1888, and demolished in 1972.
Burnham and Root was one of Chicago's most famous architectural companies of the nineteenth century. It was established by Daniel Hudson Burnham and John Wellborn Root.
In structural engineering, the tube is a system where, to resist lateral loads, a building is designed to act like a hollow cylinder, cantilevered perpendicular to the ground. This system was introduced by Fazlur Rahman Khan while at the architectural firm Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM), in their Chicago office. The first example of the tube's use is the 43-story Khan-designed DeWitt-Chestnut Apartment Building, since renamed Plaza on DeWitt, in Chicago, Illinois, finished in 1966.
The Everett Building is a 16-story commercial tower at 200 Park Avenue South at the northwest corner with East 17th Street, on Union Square in Manhattan, New York. It was designed by the architectural firm of Starrett & van Vleck and opened in 1908. Goldwin Starrett, the lead architect, had worked for Daniel Burnham for four years in Chicago, and as such the building reflects Burnham's functionalist philosophy. It marked the development of fireproof commercial skyscrapers with open plan interiors and simple, classical exteriors.
The earliest stage of skyscraper design encompasses buildings built between 1884 and 1945, predominantly in the American cities of New York and Chicago. Cities in the United States were traditionally made up of low-rise buildings, but significant economic growth after the Civil War and increasingly intensive use of urban land encouraged the development of taller buildings beginning in the 1870s. Technological improvements enabled the construction of fireproofed iron-framed structures with deep foundations, equipped with new inventions such as the elevator and electric lighting. These made it both technically and commercially viable to build a new class of taller buildings, the first of which, Chicago's 138-foot (42 m) tall Home Insurance Building, opened in 1885. Their numbers grew rapidly, and by 1888 they were being labelled skyscrapers.
A Chicago window is a large fixed glass panel flanked by two narrower sashes of the same height, filling a structural bay. The large pane is a single panel of plate glass, and the flanking elements are vertical double-hung sash windows with no dividing muntins. The fenestration was first used by architect Charles B. Atwood in the 1895 Reliance Building, and immediately after by Louis Sullivan at the 1899 Carson Pirie Scott department store, both in Chicago, Illinois. The window design was made possible by advances in glass-making technology and steel structural framing, and became a defining feature of the Chicago school style. The design offered both abundant natural light and practical ventilation. Projecting oriel bays are a common variant of the Chicago window.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Chicago school architecture .|