Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Chicago's Aqua Tower

Aqua - Chicago, Ill
There are no shortage of cool buildings around the world, but appearing to be shedding waves of water at the same time is a new one on me.  This 86-story skyscraper is in the Lakeshore East development of Chicago.  Those extended balconies undulate outward to give the impression of water cascading down the sides.  The widest of these balconies are extended some 12 feet.  Of course, what they really do is shade large portions of the building - keeping energy costs down.

The building was designed by Studio Gang Architects, and sports quite a few other green amenities including a rainwater collection system and the largest green roof in Chicago.  According to one source, the building is going to seek LEED certification.

The name "Aqua" was given to the building primarily due to the wave-emulating balconies, but its proximity to Lake Michigan kind of sealed the deal - keeping with the water theme was a must.  It is a multi-functional building that includes retail space, offices, condos, apartments, a hotel and a few penthouses.  Word also has it that the 8-th floor base is topped with a terrace, gardens, gazebos, pools, hot tubs, running tracks and even a fire pit.  At least no one should lack for water if the fire pit gets out of control!  Anyway, that's the Aqua Building of downtown Chicago.  I'd like to have one of these in Colby, with our GMD offices on the terrace floor!

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