Project DescriptionFROM THE AIA CHICAGO:
The Cube’s minimalist design is nearly invisible and ideal for the display of merchandise or exhibitions throughout the year. The only opaque portion of the building is the ‘cloud’ (or ceiling) that integrates all building systems into a sleek, sculptural element which orients visitors to the mall garden beyond. The building acts as a destination as well as a gateway.
To obtain The Cube’s transparency, the design team employed an innovative use of structural glass and bespoke connections. The Cube is supported on just four steel columns, inset at each corner. The eighteen-feet-high low-iron glass façade panels are laminated with an interlayer for extra strength while bearing on an embedded channel at the base. The eighteen-feet-high glass fins composed of three layers of tempered glass support the façade panels with structural silicone. The three-layer composition provides the opportunity to stop the middle layer short of the top. A horizontal stainless steel fin is integrated into the vertical fin, creating a connection that is minimal and elegant. The stainless steel fins are then bolted through to the other two layers. The stainless steel fins extend 4’-0" back to the primary structural beam bracing the glass fins laterally.