HouseHaus | NOBLE SQUARE

NOBLE SQUARE

Location: Chicago, USA

Open Competition: 1st Price

Design: Martin Kläschen, Carl Ray Miller

The location of the Eckhart Park public display is positioned facing Noble Street towards the West which is the most public access point to the park. The spatial configuration of the design creates a clear transition between the sidewalk and the park plane.

The design strategy is articulated by two distinct elements. A Corten steel band that functions as the display surface and as a retaining wall for an earth made mound. This mound has several slopes on all sides that provide opportunities of interaction with the park and street. The steepest sloping side shows toward Noble Street and functions as the donors display wall. All other slopes are facing toward the park and provide sites for various activities to occur upon it. The mound’s performance to the park is not only thought of as a viewing platform that captures vistas of the playing fields and activities of its users but also as an initiator for a multitude of potential activities throughout the year such as a sledding slope, stage,

seating for spectators, etc…

We propose a clear hierarchy organizing the individual levels of contributors. The Corten steel display is thought of as a canvas that will be able to accommodate an increasing number of names etched into its surface as individual donorship increases.

The project consists of two sustainable materials that are extremely durable. A reinforced concrete retaining wall that holds the Corten steel display. Corten steel is a material that is long lasting and weather resistant requiring minimal maintenance. Its beautiful warm color comes from a natural protective layer created through oxidization. We believe that this color is harmonious with the material palette of the park and its surrounding building context such as the field house and the pool.

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