Virtual Event on Thursday, October 7, 2021 – The Competition for the Harold Washington Library Center: 30th Anniversary Commemoration!
by Staff


Chicago Public Library Archives. Harold Washington Library Center, Design Build Competition Records

Canadian architect Arthur Erickson’s 1988 proposal for the Harold Washington Library Center would have dramatically spanned the CTA elevated tracks over Van Buren and created a landscaped park on State Street. During the final selection process, competition juror and Yale University professor Vincent Scully compared it to a “Houston or Marin County shopping center.”


Progressive Architecture, 1989

Join Patrick Steffes of DOCOMOMO US/Chicago for a 30th anniversary celebration on the decades-long battle to design and build a new Chicago Central Library. The largest municipal library in the U.S., what is now Harold Washington Library (HWLC) is also one of the largest public Postmodern buildings in the world.


Chicago Public Library Archives. Harold Washington Library Center, Design Build Competition Records

Included in our illustrated lecture are many unknown and unpublished images of South State Street and the South Loop, including never-published high-resolution photographs showing the site of the current Harold Washington Library Center and the surrounding area going back more than 100 years.

Thursday, October 7, 2021 at 6:00 p.m. Central.

For ways to view this anniversary commemoration, visit this Chicago Public Library event page.

We look forward to seeing you and celebrating the 30th anniversary of the Harold Washington Library Center!

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