Launch Slideshow

Midway Crossings, The University of Chicago

Midway Crossings, The University of Chicago

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    Tom Rossiter

    The Midway Crossings on the University of Chicago campus connects the north and south sides of the ever expanding university. The site, a green expanse, dates back to the 1893 World Columbian Exposition.

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    Tom Rossiter

    During the day, the custom-designed light masts‑architectural  elements‑take on a sculptural quality, reflecting natural light. As day  transitions to dusk, the light masts illuminate from within.

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    Tom Rossiter

    The light masts, sidewalk luminaires, and illuminated handrails create a safe and pedestrian-friendly walkway.

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    Tom Rossiter

    The 40-foot-tall light masts are internally lit by 360-degree light pipes with 3000K 315W T9 ceramic metal halide illuminators located at each base. The base shrouds slide up for maintenance access.

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    Tom Rossiter

    The masts provide visually comfortable vertical illumination, lighting pedestrians’ faces to provide a greater sense of security. All of the lighting elements are controlled via time clock.

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    Tom Rossiter

    Stainless-steel grilles at the base of the sidewalk lights are hinged for maintenance. Narrow-beam 12W LED cylinders uplight angled, hammered reflectors that create pools of light marching down the path.

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    Tom Rossiter

    Standard street poles were required by the City of Chicago to meet roadway illumination levels. Calculations were done to determine which poles would have to be removed or relocated to coordinate with the new lighting scheme.

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    Tom Rossiter

    The illuminated handrails use 3000K linear LED fixtures to provide a wash of light along the sidewalk. Drivers are concealed in the niche at the retaining wall below.

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    Tom Rossiter

    The Crossings’ retaining walls are illuminated by concealed 45-degree, 3000K, linear LED fixtures.

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    Tom Rossiter

    Planters are integrated into the hardscape and delineate the pedestrian path and enhance the overall pedestrian experience.

 

The University of Chicago's historic north campus is separated from its new south campus by the Midway, a green expanse that dates back to the 1893 World's Columbian Expedition. While pleasant parkland during the day, at night the area presented the perfect environment for illicit activity. To remedy this, the university wanted to establish a safe and inviting passage across the expanse that would connect the two campuses and protect its students. It hired a consortium of designers—including James Carpenter Design Associates, Bauer Latoza Studio, and Schuler Shook—to provide a secure, light-filled crossing.

The team developed a series of vandal-resistant, custom-designed stainless-steel masts, handrails, and sidewalk luminaires that form a procession across the Midway. In the base of the 40-foot-tall masts, 3000K 315W ceramic metal halide T9 lamps direct light through 360-degree light pipes. These masts are constructed from stainless-steel rings that disperse light outward. The designers manipulated the rings to create a variation in the intensity of the light along the elevation of the mast that goes from light to dark and back to light again. The rings are more densely spaced at the bottom of the masts, providing visual comfort for pedestrians, and less densely spaced at the top to create the illusion of equal illumination at both ends. Reflectors at the top of the masts maximize efficiency and cut down on light pollution.

The handrails conceal 4W-per-linear-foot LED strips, and 12W LED fixtures at the sidewalk base uplight hammered-reflectors that create pools of light marching down the path.

Jury Comments: An inventive solution, beautifully done. • The integration of the fixtures creates a sense of place where once there was none.