Abrahamic Interfaith Center
Chicago, IL | 2009
The new Abrahamic Interfaith Center was to create a bridge of understanding between eastern and the western cultures. Toward this overarching mission, the client envisioned a facility on the former site of the Michael Reese Hospital, south of downtown Chicago on Lake Michigan. The program elements include a mosque, inter faith cultural centers, museum, hotel & apartment tower and parking plinth.
The mosque was given the most visually prominent location in a white stone courtyard at the southeast corner of the site and is the first structure that a visitor encounters as they approach the complex. It is faced in white stone cladding of an Islamic parquet pat¬tern with small openings at its base which become ever larger as the structure ascends, allowing for light and views upward. The cultural and convention center is a four-story building that encloses the courtyard and forms the base of the tower. The thin, curving, hotel/apartment tower is designed to optimize views to the city and lake, and to be visually provocative when seen from a great distance. The design of both the tower and the cultural center includes a glass skin is based upon a 12th century Persian girih tile pattern which pro¬vides a simple modular system capable of conforming to the complex curves of the architectural forms.