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Tue May 17 2022

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Lead designers picked for Chicago’s $8.5bn airport expansion

28 Mar 19 The winner has been chosen from five shortlisted teams competing to lead the design of a US$8.5bn (£6.4bn) expansion of O’Hare International Airport in Chicago, USA.

Studio ORD has been selected and will now enter into contract negotiations with the City of Chicago. Upon contract award, Studio ORD will work with the city of Chicago and airlines to design the US$2.2bn Global Terminal & Concourse. The team is made up of Corgan Associates, Milhouse Engineering & Construction, STL Architects, Solomon Cordwell Buenz & Associates and Studio Gang Architects.

In the coming months, a second team will be selected from the remaining four finalists to design two new satellite concourses to be built west of Terminal 1.

The search for a lead architect was launched by a request for qualifications in June 2018, wherein 12 teams submitted statements of qualifications. A request for proposals followed in November 2018 to the five teams that were shortlisted based on the city's evaluation: Fentress-EXP-Brook-Garza Joint Venture Partners; Foster Epstein Moreno Joint Venture Partners; Santiago Calatrava LLC; Skidmore, Owings, & Merrill; and Studio ORD Joint Venture Partners (link opens in new tab).

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“After an intensive procurement process, the City has selected the top scoring team to deliver the design for O’Hare Global Terminal,” said Chief Procurement Officer Shannon E. Andrews. “We are excited that the winning team has committed to substantial mentor-protégé agreements as part of their plan, to ensure that local firms will benefit from the economic activity of this major project.”

Mayor of Chicago Rahm Emanuel said: “The City of Chicago called upon teams from across the city and around the world to lead O’Hare’s historic expansion, and Studio ORD answered that call. During this historic competition, the world’s best architecture firms submitted their incredible visions for the world to see—with each of these five world-class designs strengthening our plans to bring O’Hare into the 21st century.  Today we congratulate Studio ORD who has proven they have the experience, expertise, and the talent needed to work with the City of Chicago as we usher in a new era at O’Hare.”

The 2.2-million-square-feet Global Terminal will more than double the space at today’s Terminal 2. It is currently slated to break ground in 2023.  

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