The Chicago Architecture Biennial named the winning entry in the Lakefront Kiosk Competition. The winning design, "Chicago Horizon," was awarded the BP Prize—a $10,000 honorarium and $75,000 for construction. The kiosk will debut at the biennial when it opens in October.
Selected from 421 entries in the competition, Chicago Horizon is designed by Yasmin Vobis and Aaron Forrest, AIA, of Rhode Island firm Ultramoderne. Brett Schneider, a senior associate at New York's Guy Nordenson and Associates, is the structural engineer on the project.
At 56 feet wide, Ultramoderne's square kiosk design is designed on two levels. The base includes a lending library enclosed with galvanized steel chain-link fencing, as well as space for seating. Chicago Horizon also includes a viewing platform suspended from the roof, composed of fencing as well as steel grating. The cross-laminated timber roof is supported by glulam columns.
The architects describe the project: "The lateral reach of the roof recalibrates the experience of two extremes of the Chicago landscape: at ground level, the Lake Michigan horizon dominates, forming a line of symmetry between ground and canopy. From the viewing platform, the roof becomes a new artificial horizon, shutting out the foreground and emphasizing the floating vertical Chicago skyline above an abstract floating plane."
The kiosk will be installed in Chicago's Millennium Park during the biennial, which runs from Oct. 3, 2015 through Jan. 3, 2016, and then moved to a permanent home along Lake Michigan in spring of 2016. The kiosk's library space will be converted to space for vending at the permanent site.
The Chicago Park District and the City of Chicago partnered on the design competition. The jury included: David Adjaye, Hon. FAIA, principal of London's Adjaye Associates; Jeanne Gang, FAIA, founder and principal of Chicago-based Studio Gang Architects; Joseph Grima and Sarah Herda, co-artistic directors of the Chicago Architecture Biennial; Sharon Johnston, FAIA, a founder and principal of Los Angeles–based Johnston Marklee; Michael J. O'Brien, AIA, of BP; and Rob Rejman, director of the Chicago Park District's Division of Planning and Development.
Chicago Horizon is one of four kiosks to be installed for the biennial. The biennial also unveiled the other three designs, which are being created by local schools in partnership with architects.
The Chicago Architecture Biennial also announced three finalist concepts in the competition: "Behind the Curtain," a proposal by Lekker Architects, and a proposal by TRU Architekten. There were also three honorable mentions.