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Ross Barney Architects, Urban Works


Chicago Department of Transportation


  • General Contractor: F.H. Paschen, S.N. Nielsen
  • Other: T.Y. Lin International
  • Other: Singh and Associates
  • Other: LTK Engineering

Project Status


Year Completed

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Project Description


The CTA Cermak/McCormick Place Green Line station serves the country’s largest convention center which was station-less since 1977. The innovative design, a tube covering the platform and tracks, is a response to the narrow right-of-way, a minimal platform, the need for low-maintenance materials, and the creation of a “gateway” to welcome visitors to Chicago.

To maximize the limited platform, canopy and windbreaks were combined into a single element, supported on a new structure independent of the tracks. The bent pipe structure was assembled on an adjacent site and lifted into place during low traffic hours to minimize train disruptions.

The polycarbonate and stainless steel enclosure maximizes rain and wind protection while providing light and views. Translucent panels are provided directly over the platform. Perforated shingles form the sides of the tube. The shingles are attached with a specially designed clip allowing replacement of individual shingles for ease of maintenance.  Four perforation densities with up to 23% open area are used to deflect rain and wind while allowing summer ventilation.  Perforation densities are arranged to maximize views over Cermak Road and to protect from prevailing winter winds. Slight entasis at the center of the tube emphasizes and celebrates arrival and gateway.

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