Before the end of 2016, the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University won’t just be culminating another successful year, it’ll be celebrating the opening of its immense new Global Hub.
The approximately 410,000-square-foot center, located on the edge of Lake Michigan in Chicago, will serve as Kellogg’s new modern epicenter. Included in the enormous 103-foot complex designed by Toronto-based architecture firm KPMB Architects will be advanced, green-friendly classrooms, a 1,400-square-foot student lounge, an auditorium and a picturesque 2,000-square-foot terrace overlooking Lake Michigan.
The complex is comprised of four separate buildings joined together by a 6,000-square-foot atrium called Collaboration Plaza. This adjoining central point aims to create an environment of “connected neighborhoods of academic teaching and research,” KPMB Founding Partner Bruce Kuwabara said in a statement.
“This building is going to send a big message about the future of education, especially within management institutions,” Kuwabara continued. “You don’t want to be just another business school; you want to set the standard, and that’s what Kellogg has done.”
Perhaps the most alluring, inventive feature of the Global Hub is the remarkable flexibility it offers within its walls. Every classroom in the building can be modified for size, becoming tiered, flat, divided or expanded. Similarly, Collaboration Plaza doubles as both a centralized point of the complex and a space that can be used for conferences or similar events. Even the 350-seat White Auditorium can be modified for dining, making it perfect for larger formal events.
“We designed a building that’s adaptable so that as technology and programs change in the future, the building can adapt with those needs,” Kellogg Lead Project Manager Leann Paul said in a statement.
The exterior of the facility was designed to appropriately reflect the surrounding environment, creating a naturalist element to the modern design. The unique curvature of the buildings was conceived with the winding shores of Lake Michigan in mind, and the earth-tone color scheme was inspired by the untouched nature of the region. As well, the exuberance of glass panels invites natural lighting, adding to the already environmentally-friendly atmosphere of the complex.
In a matter of weeks, the Global Hub will “set a standard for how we teach at Kellogg,” Dean Sally Blount said in a statement. An exact opening date has not yet been confirmed.