Krueck and Sexton Architects
|Krueck and Sexton Architects|
|Projects||Herman Miller National Design Center, Chicago|
Krueck and Sexton Architects is a Chicago based, internationally recognized architecture practice founded by Ron Krueck and Mark Sexton. Tom Jacobs was named the third principal in 2011. During their 30-year history they have completed a wide variety of projects that have received numerous national and regional awards. Their design process is marked by close client collaboration in order to develop unique and specific solutions for each project. They are known for their interdisciplinary approach and research-based studio culture, which has produced a body of work that has been characterized as beautiful, environmentally efficient, and both visually and functionally enduring over time. Currently, the firm’s design for a New Federal Office Building with a net-zero energy target by 2030 is under construction and is scheduled to open in 2014.
Krueck and Sexton Architects is dedicated to realizing architecture that embraces creativity and innovation, which is achieved by listening, collaboration, and challenging of assumptions. The firm’s architectural point of view states that space, daylight, scale, proportion, materiality, and detail matter most.
Blair Kamin insightfully expressed his observations of this Chicago team, in an article he wrote about them when named Chicagoans of the Year by the Chicago Tribune, stating that “Unlike today’s solo-oriented “starchitects,” Krueck and Sexton form a true partnership, relying heavily on their complimentary talents. Krueck conceptualizes. Sexton questions. Krueck refines.”
Among their designs are Chicago's Spertus Institute and Crown Fountain. Spertus Institute is known for its striking all glass facade that provides views towards Grant Park and Lake Michigan, where 726 panes of glass in over 500 different shapes and sizes were used while simultaneously staying within a tight budget. Krueck and Sexton worked in close collaboration with artist Jaume Plensa to help realize his design for Crown Fountain in Chicago's Millennium Park.
The firm has also completed restoration work on Mies van der Rohe's 860-880 Lake Shore Drive Apartments where the facades were recoated and cleaned, the plaza was restored with a new concealed drainage system, and new sandblasted glass was used in the lobby, which more accurately represents the original design.
Honors and Awards
Krueck and Sexton Architects has been the recipient of many national and regional awards for their designs, most notably for the Spertus Institute of Jewish Studies, the Steel and Glass House, Crown Fountain, Herman Miller National Showroom in Chicago, and Phillips Plastics Custom Molding Facility. The firm’s work has been featured and exhibited nationally and internationally by The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, A+U, Global Architecture, The Whitney Museum, The Museum of Modern Art and many others. Both Ron Krueck and Mark Sexton are members of American Institute of Architects College of Fellows.
- AIA Chicago Firm of the Year, 2004
- American Institute of Architects National Honor Awards
- AIA Chicago Chapter Honor Awards
- Good Design is Good Business Award, Business Week/Architectural Record
- Top Ten Green Project, US Department of Energy
- Chicagoans of the Year, Chicago Tribune, 2005, Ron Krueck and Mark Sexton
- American Institute of Architects National Young Architect Award, 2012, Tom Jacobs
- ‘40 Under 40’ Top Architects in the USA, Interiors Magazine, 1986
- Interior Design Hall of Fame
- Rudy Bruner Award for Urban Excellence
The Chicago Children's Museum Controversy
In 2006, the Chicago Children's Museum announced that it was outgrowing its current space at Navy Pier and unveiled plans to relocate to a new Grant Park location designed by Krueck and Sexton Architects. Based on a winning competition entry in 2008, Krueck and Sexton Architects designed a primarily underground structure "that is elegantly integrated into Grant Park, akin to the inseparable relationship between tree root and ground. The Museum replaces a portion of an existing underground parking garage, thus allowing the entire project footprint to remain park land. Yet, with the grade change, and the building opening to the south, the design offers abundant openness and exposure to daylight."
Originally backed by former Chicago mayor Richard M. Daley, the proposal was met with opposition from many groups, chiefly among them the parks and planning groups argument that a building in the park "violated the city forefathers’ mandate that the lakefront remain 'forever open, free and clear.'" After numerous redesigns, the city approved a final plan in 2008. Fundraising for the project became difficult during the financial crisis, possibly putting a halt on the project. “We are no longer pursuing a move to Grant Park,” Chad Mertz, a museum spokesman told Chicago Tribune Reporter Blair Kamin in his January 27, 2012 article on the Museum. Instead, he said, the museum is focused on its discussions with Navy Pier officials about revamping and expanding its present home at the pier. “With recent changes in the economic and political climate,” Mertz said, “it made us take a step back and take a look at our position.” The recession hampered efforts to raise $100 million for the project and current Chicago mayor Rahm Emanuel effectively put a close on the issue when he said suggested it was time to "hit a reset button" on the project. Plan's for an expanded Children's Museum at their current home at Navy Pier were included in the plans for a Navy Pier renovation.
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