"James R. Thompson Center" Chicago Things to Do Tip by Jefie
Chicago Things to Do: 1,643 reviews and 3,181 photos
I'm not exactly a big fan of "really modern" architecture, but sometimes one such building will strike my fancy. A few examples that come to mind would have to be the "Gherkin" in London, the Pompidou Centre in Paris, and I can now add to that list the James R. Thompson Center in Chicago. It was built in 1985 and right away its round shape sets it apart from all the other buildings in downtown Chicago. But it is mostly what's inside that impressed me - it felt as though I had just stepped into a scene from the Matrix trilogy! With its 49 m diameter, the skylit rotunda is one of the largest enclosed space in the world. The lights and colors all around give it a very distinct futuristic look, as glass elevators zoom up and down see-through shafts between the building's 17 floors.
The James R. Thompson Center mostly houses government offices, but there are also some shops and restaurants located on the bottom floors. It is open from 8:00 am to 6:00 pm on weekdays.
Address: 100 West Randolph Street
Directions: Downtown Chicago (the Loop)
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