Chicago Illinois The Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship at the Illinois Institute of Technology is devoted to fostering collaboration, innovation, and entrepreneurship between IIT’s students, faculty, alumni and partners. Conceived as a hybrid of campus space and building, the building is organized around two open-air courtyards through which visitors enter the building; circulation inside the building is indirect and dispersed, designed to promote collaboration and interaction. The building provides flexibly adaptive space which can be reconfigured easily and support a wide variety of uses.
The design of the Innovation Center is forward-thinking in its approach to sustainability. The second floor of the building, which cantilevers over the ground floor to provide sun shading, is enclosed in a dynamic façade of ETFE foil cushions which can vary the amount of solar energy entering the building through sophisticated pneumatics. The ETFE foil is 1% the weight of glass and gives the building a light, cloud-like appearance.