Chicago Illinois This project renovates an existing research laboratory tower space on the IIT campus into a demonstration and training center for Smart Grid technology, an energy initiative that employs digital technology to move electricity around the national system as efficiently and economically as possible. Existing cinder block walls in the public corridors are replaced with glazed partitions to allow daylight to penetrate through the outer ring of offices into the floor's common areas, reducing the energy demand for lighting and at the same time opening up views to the campus and city.
Visitors step off the elevator into a lobby space of mirrored and tinted glass which leads to Smart Grid demonstration rooms. Electrical risers and in-wall conduit are exposed between the layers of red-tinted and mirrored glass to celebrate the means of electrical distribution to the floor. A wall of video monitors leads to the training area, which includes classrooms for training people for careers related to Smart Grid technology. Electrical usage monitors are integrated into the interior architecture so that building occupants can monitor the energy they are using.