The 14th floor of the 112 and 116 South Michigan Ave buildings will become the new home for the SAIC Career Services group, which is part of the Student Affairs department. In developing a direct connection between these two buildings, the circulation and spatial experience will be transformed. Our proposal extends the student lounge currently located in the 112 building to the 116 building. This approach expands the student experience, capturing the stunning views out to Millennium Park and Lake Michigan. Understanding that there is approximately a 3’-3” level difference between the two floors we have made this into a design feature that the students are invited to experience, not just pass through.
The existing floor plate is long and narrow. Currently the circulation spaces are areas you want to quickly pass through to get to your destination. We feel the journey is just as important as the destination. The circulation is shifted to be against the ‘core’ of the building. With this arrangement the columns create a repetition of movement that becomes a feature and not an physical barrier. These spaces become ‘student alcoves’ for conversation, secluded study or peaceful meditation. The programed office spaces, both private and semi-private, are located to the exterior walls, with the potential classrooms to the west end of the floor.