Zurich Insurance Group has officially opened its new North American headquarters in Chicago. The 783,800-square-foot building that takes form of three stacked and offset bars was designed by Chicago-based Goettsch Partners. Thanks to sustainable energy strategies deployed by consulting agency Thornton Tomasetti, the building is expected to achieve the coveted LEED Platinum certification.
The building comprises three bars stacked and arranged to maximize views of the surrounding landscape and optimize solar orientation. Its form and programmatic flexibility is rarely found in typical office buildings.
Thornton Tomasetti analyzed and developed several sustainable strategies which were incorporated into the design of the building. Greywater reuse and rainwater harvesting systems were combined with detailed daylighting studies to reduce solar gains in the summer. The team used Honeybee software to evaluate the effects of automated interior blinds and calculate the efficiency of exterior shading devices. Other sustainable features include multiple green roofs, accommodation for low-emitting vehicles and native landscaping.
Photos by James Steinkamp