Cermak Creative Industries District
2011-2012 PARTNERS: DEPARTMENT OF CULTURAL AFFAIRS AND SPECIAL EVENTS, CITY OF CHICAGO AND REHABILITATION INSTITUTE OF CHICAGO
ARCHEWORKS engaged in a City-led effort to transform an isolated industrial corridor into a new district for the creative industries. The proposed Cermak Creative Industries District, which borders the communities of Chinatown and Pilsen, will provide a mix of work spaces and collaborative opportunities for diverse enterprises that are part of Chicago’s expanding creative industries sector. The ARCHEWORKS design team, COLL Chicago, focused on a series of design challenges that laid important groundwork for the District’s predevelopment phase. Our goal was to help the City set a new standard for a world class creative business hub that attracts and spawns businesses across the creative sectors.
This ARCHEWORKS initiative closely aligns with Chicago’s long-term goal of building the capacity of cultural districts as a city-wide economic engine while developing new models for cultural economic development that strengthen neighborhood economies. Drawing from local field research surrounding best practices and ideas from around the world, our COLL Chicago team planned to expand access across the District while aiding in the city’s vision to reanimate the District as a hub for the creative industries. They constructed small scale physical and digital interventions to enhance the interaction between potential users of the site, current tenants, and the District.