Skyline challenge, going back to the office and Chicago's Theatre District

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MAY 28, 2020 • ISSUE 09

Explore the wonders of Chicago as a CAC member! You’ll see our fascinating city in a whole new way with great perks like FREE CAC Live virtual tours led by expert docents—and a host of amazing benefits including FREE walking tours (when the CAC reopens) that are second to none. Memberships start at just $80.

CAC membership


Virtual Workshop on Returning to the Office
Tuesday, June 2 at noon

Register now for this workshop providing tools and clear-cut steps toward a safe return to the workplace. Presented by Todd Heiser, Co-Managing Director of Gensler’s Chicago office, with an introduction by Ann Thompson, Senior VP of Architecture and Design at Related Midwest, this program is designed for employers, building managers and others charged with reopening an office. Bring your questions for a Q&A moderated by CAC President and CEO Lynn Osmond.

Virtual workshop program

The Future of the Hospital
Friday, June 5 at 8:30am

Lynn Osmond hosts this timely discussion with people involved in the design of Rush University Medical Center—a facility uniquely suited to contain infectious diseases and respond to surges that occur during public health crises. We’ll examine how the design community can lead a united response to such a crisis while supporting under-resourced and temporary facilities. With retired Rush University Medical Center CEO Dr. Larry Goodman and Perkins and Will Principal Ralph Johnson.

Future of the hospital


Chicago Architecture, Page by Page
Saturday, May 30 at 1pm

Chicago’s distinctive architecture illustrates the works of numerous writers, from Midwest naturalist Theodore Dreiser to poet Carl Sandburg to graphic novelist Chris Ware. Join us as CAC docent Leanne Star explores intersections between Chicago architecture and literature, revealing how each art form continues to enrich the other.

Page by Page program

Chicago’s Downtown Theatre District
Wednesday, June 3 at 7pm
Saturday, June 13 at 1pm

Concentrated along Randolph Street and home to landmark venues including the Chicago Theatre and the James M. Nederlander Theatre, this bustling strip reflected trends and preferences in live performance throughout numerous eras. CAC docent Robin Simon outlines the district’s history, sharing interesting facts about ways it evolved—and continues to change.

Theater program


Contemporary tour

Sunday, May 31 at 1pm

Chicago experienced a construction boom in the early 21st century that utilized a variety of design approaches. This live, 45-minute tour with CAC docent Mike McMains describes influences on recent projects and explores the forms and materials presented in contemporary architecture. Get to know several buildings—and the architects who designed them—from the past two decades.

CAC Live brings the world of architecture and design to you—wherever you are—through timely discussions with industry leaders, talks with acclaimed authors and experts, virtual tours focused on landmarks and historical styles, building and neighborhood stories with CAC docents, and more! Visit to browse and register for upcoming events.


Architecture Essentials


For this week’s episode of Architecture Essentials, we gathered all the LEGO blocks we could find for design challenges based on Earth, in the water, in the air—and in outer space. Let’s meet up with CAC Senior Manager of Education and Experience Angela Esposito to get started.

Neighborhood Strollers


Un poco de lluvia no impidió que Mizael Robledo saliera a caminar para apreciar los murales de Pilsen. (A little rain didn’t stop CAC Interim Education Coordinator Mizael Robledo from taking a walk to appreciate the murals of Pilsen.)


Previously on “Storytime with the CAC,” Manager of Teen Programs Kennda Mims-Burt brought us “Islandborn” by Junot Díaz and Leo Espinosa. This Friday, May 29 at 12:30pm Central Time, tune into the CAC’s Facebook page to read “Maybe Something Beautiful” in English—“Quizás Algo Hermoso” in Spanish—by F. Isabel Campoy and Theresa Howell, with illustrations by Rafael López.

Fullerton State Bank Building story


Better known for a pair of icons downtown from the Roaring Twenties, architect Karl Vitzthum also designed a Lincoln Park bank where the neighborhood meets the Chicago River. CAC docent Steven Redfield tells the story of a stately building adapted for multiple uses since its completion in 1923.


CAC Recommends


This summer, you might find you have more time than usual to read; fortunately, the CAC has you covered with a trio of novels whose stories are anchored in the art of architecture. To get even more ideas for your reading list, be sure to check out CAC Live: Chicago Architecture, Page by Page this Saturday, May 30 at 1pm.



Test your knowledge of Chicago’s skyline by naming all eight skyscrapers shown in red silhouette—without searching online, if you can. Download the full image and look for the answers in next week’s issue of CAC@Home!

Name that building challenge


The CAC mourns the recent death of Robert Coles, the first African American chancellor of the American Institute of Architects’ College of Fellows, and a founding member of the National Organization of Minority Architects (NOMA). Follow the links below to learn more about Coles’ innumerable contributions to the field.

Robert T. Coles. Photo courtesy of the New York Coalition of Black Architects and NOMA.”

“Robert Coles, 90, pioneering architect who designed UB’s Alumni Arena” —Mark Sommer, The Buffalo News

“Robert Coles, trailblazing Buffalo architect, dies at 90” —Matt Hickman, The Architect’s Newspaper

“Activist and architect Robert T. Coles dies at 90” —Madeleine D’Angelo, Architect magazine

The CAC was honored to have NOMA’s current national president, Kimberly Dowdell, with us for an International Museum Day discussion on equity. Watch the full program.


The CAC is committed to providing a safe experience for its entire community of members, staff, visitors, volunteers and tour attendees. Visit our COVID-19 information page for the latest updates.

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