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Koolhaas beats field in Mies Campus competition


Rem Koolhaas has won the competition to design a new campus centre at the Illinois Institute of Technology's historic Mies van der Rohe campus. Koolhaas, who beat an illustrious shortlist including Zaha Hadid, Peter Eisenman, Helmut Jahn/Werner Sobeck and Kazuyo Sejima and Ryue Nishizawa, plans to build a 10,000m2, one-storey building spanning under elevated rapid-transit tracks with a steel tube on its roof to cut the ensuing noise. It will house student organisations and services, dining entertainment and retail, a bookstore, meeting rooms, and a unique Mies interpretative centre.

Mack Scogin, chair of the jury and partner in Atlanta firm Scogin Elam Bray Architects, said: 'Rem Koolhaas recognises that a primary imperative facing the iit campus is to create an urban intensity with a relatively low density of population. His innovative design creates an urban condition within the campus itself. It brings the students together not only physically, but spiritually.'

The building has received a $10 million donation from the McCormick Tribune Foundation, from which it will also take its name. The main campus and 20 of its 50 buildings were the work of Mies, who headed the college of architecture from 1938-1958, with many of the other buildings designed by his students.

The design competition was announced last November as part of a five- year, $250 million campaign, launched by $120 million from Robert Pritzker, chairman of iit's trustees.

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