Bloomingdale Trail Project

For
Student Work at Columbia College Chicago
Description

The program asks for a cafe/eatery, exhibit space, staff office, and areas integrated with the proposed public park. The Bloomingdale Trail has yet to be built in Chicago, but efforts are still being made to clean up and convert the abandoned railroad line into a linear park.

My concept was inspired by sunlight, and ways in which we can capture it through architecture and art not only for daylighting strategies but to convey emotion and contemplation. Light art is reserved for the exhibit space along the pathways and entrance into the trail via Damen Avenue 15 ft. below, as well as in a contained life-size Camera Obscura space which can be darkened completely to allow for artificial light art exhibits. The offices and Camera Obscura space are constructed from an abandoned train car, many of which lie on the west end of the Bloomingdale Trail.

Visitors can ascend the ADA accessible ramp up to the trail or beyond, onto the green roof that connects to the cafe. The space is accessible from the trail itself, from the street below, and from an elevator accessed from the ground level park to the north.