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Illinois Institute of Technology Completes Three-Building Housing Project

Photo courtesy of Tom Harris
Photo courtesy of Tom Harris
CHICAGO, IL — The Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) has completed a $70 million, three-building housing project with the opening of the Carman Hall residential facility. All three buildings, situated at the campus entryway and offering views of the Chicago skyline, were designed by German American Architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, a pioneer of modernist architecture.

“These magnificent buildings have transformed the campus landscape, providing a striking front door to the vibrant Illinois Institute of Technology campus and positioning Illinois Tech for one of its highest recorded enrollment numbers,” said Illinois Tech President Raj Echambadi, noting that first-year undergraduate enrollment for the 2022-2023 academic year is more than 25 percent higher than the previous year. “We’re thrilled with the outcome of this project and are grateful to our partners at Gilbane and Denison for honoring the history of these beautiful buildings while infusing energy and natural light into state-of-the-art living spaces for our students.”

Historic preservation was a top priority for the project, while ensuring energy efficiency and environmental sustainability.

“Gilbane values the positive and productive relationship we’ve built with Illinois Tech, and we’re proud to have contributed to bringing these spectacular, historic structures back to life,” said Karrie Kratz, Vice President and Business Leader for Gilbane Chicago. “It’s fitting that an institution that prepares some of the most talented emerging leaders in construction, architecture, and design is home to this exceptional trio of buildings. This project illustrates Illinois Tech’s commitment to historic preservation and creating community through inspiring learning and living spaces for its students.”

Dirk Denison, the lead Architect on the project, is also a Professor of Architecture at Illinois Tech. He incorporated the project into his classroom, with students regularly visiting the job sites on campus for a hands-on, up-close learning experience. Denison’s firm includes five alumni from Illinois Tech and two recent graduates who studied under Denison and have joined the Gilbane team.

“Experiential education is at the core of Illinois Tech’s mission and approach. It was rewarding for students to have the opportunity to apply their knowledge and skills as part of this iconic project located on their campus,” said Denison, Founding Principal of Dirk Denison Architects and Professor and MCHAP Director at Illinois Tech. “It’s particularly gratifying to help deliver projects that acknowledge the timeless quality of Modernist architecture and the value of preserving them. IIT has a respectful commitment to its Mies legacy and has led the way to recognize the original intent of the buildings by bringing them back to life through thoughtful reuse and sustainable strategies.”

Gilbane provides comprehensive construction and facilities-related services — from preconstruction planning and integrated consulting capabilities to comprehensive construction management, general contracting, design-build, and facility management services — for clients across various markets. Founded in 1870 and still a privately held, family-owned company, Gilbane has more than 45 office locations worldwide. Since 1978, Gilbane has delivered construction solutions in Chicago for clients across multiple market sectors, including health care, higher education, K-12, public sector, corporate and interiors, developer, residential, life sciences, and industrial.

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