Winter has arrived in Chicago. We are no strangers to the wind, snow, ice and sub-zero temps. Coping strategies include down coats, waterproof boots and gazing on sun-dappled projects like Morgan Park. Enjoy.
The complex program was developed around design strategies that connect nature into the office space, engaging an active office culture and creating opportunities for increased movement and interaction, leading to an enjoyable, balanced workspace that supports team rapport, encourages personal health, and increases overall work and life satisfaction.
The most pressing design challenge was introducing natural light into the vast, monolithic volume. To address this, two open air courtyards were cut into the building footprint, creating a dynamic indoor-outdoor experience that floods the workspace with natural light. This also creates a literal and physical connection to the outdoors, providing a lively and refreshing indoor-outdoor relationship for the formerly enclosed space. The inclusion of parklike vistas and abundant daylight in the middle of the floorplate offers a delightful and welcoming outdoor space for staff enjoyment, and paired with responsive lighting systems and varied interior landscapes, creates a dynamic interior environment
In addition to office and training space supporting HCSC/BCBS IL business needs, the adjacent Blue Door Community Center provides health and wellness programs for the community, establishing a resource designed for preventative health and community wellness. The facility incorporates a multi-function event space which can be partitioned as required to serve as a large meeting space, intimate training room, and host for other community events, gatherings, and demonstrations such as yoga, senior events, and health classes. Community outreach has a measurable impact on the neighborhood, filling a much-needed social gap.