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The University of Chicago Gwen and Jules Knapp Center for Biomedical Discovery in Chicago.

The University of Chicago Gwen and Jules Knapp Center for Biomedical Discovery

  • COMPLETION DATE
    2009

Overview

Thornton Tomasetti provided structural engineering services for a 330,000-square-foot science and medical research facility for The University of Chicago. The 10-story concrete building, one of the tallest structures on the University’s Hyde Park campus, accommodates the wet laboratory programs of the departments of medicine and pediatrics, and cancer research.

The award-winning building features multi-story spaces to facilitate the exchange of ideas among personnel on adjacent floors, and provides efficient and flexible areas for laboratories, laboratory and office support, and a vivarium. A 21-foot-long cantilever on the south side of the building supports all 10 floors and the serrated west wall affords each office a view.

The center’s exterior is a limestone base with glass curtain walls. Two wing-like architectural elements, supported on steel trusses, cantilever from the building, extending the façade. Contributing to the building’s visual appeal is the roof canopy, formed by a structural steel cornice.

A 90-foot-long pedestrian bridge extends from Knapp Center at its third floor to the Gordon Center for Integrative Science. A second bridge, spanning 38 feet, links to the Donnelly Biological Sciences Learning Center.

A green roof tops the building’s one-story mechanical penthouse.

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